A shop vac is one of the tools that have to be present in a garage to call it complete and functional. Whether you are interested in woodworking, or DIY projects, or cars, a shop vac is always there to clean up the mess you made.
As a result, this machine does take quite a beating. Often, the first sign of this is seen on the hose. Thus, knowing how to remove and change a shop vac hose is necessary. If you’ve been using a shop vac for a while, you will know what I mean when I said knowing how to change a shop vac hose is important.
Those often tend to break, leak, or simply wear down and eventually snap out of the socket mid-operation. And trust me, once this starts happening, things just keep getting worse.
The problems are common since the parts are often made of plastic or some other synthetic materials. Not knowing how to remove or replace the parts properly doesn’t help either. If it does anything, it helps the abrasion and makes the annoying snaps more frequent. To solve those, here’s how to remove a shop vac hose.
How To Remove A Shop Vac Hose | Precautions
Removing a shop vac hose is a simple and fast process. However, you do need to be careful. Often, the parts are made of plastic or other polymers like PVC, which makes them light, flexible, but they are neither the strongest material nor are they abrasion-resistant.
So, taking good care of them is crucial. And the “taking care” part begins even before you bought the replacement hose. Here are some precautions you should follow-
1. Get The Right Hose For Your Shop Vac
Most of the shop vacs nowadays use one of the two universal diameters sized hoses. Thus, getting the exact size for your tool is not that big of a deal. What is a big deal is the quality of the hose you are buying?
Do your resource first and see which hose is available for you, which are made of the best material that fits your budget, and the overall public response regarding the item.
Some models of the vac hose come with adapters. Adapters help you attach your hose to other vacs even with a different diameter outlet. It is generally a good idea to use an adapter. In case things do not work the way, it was intended to, it is the adapter that is at the risk of breaking or being damaged.
2. Get Proper And Enough Accessories
Accessories are some of the things that are very handy to have, but by no means are compulsory. But accessories like wide funnel nozzles, different brushed nozzles, narrow hose heads, elbow attachments, or wands do make life a lot easier.
In addition, when using the proper attachment, you will not be pulling your hose left and right. Thus, it will help the tool last longer. Depending on the model of the hose, you may or may not get extensions as a part of the hose pack. If you did not get them, you could always search for some.
How To Remove A Shop Vac Hose | The Process
There are a few types of connectors used in the shop vac hose connector. While the Posi lock style/push-n-click type connectors dominate the market, there are also unorthodox ones like the threaded ones, or cuff couplers, or something else.
The majority of the shop vac hose has this kind of locking mechanism. To unlock the old hose, first, you will need to locate the two/three oval-shaped holes on the side of the female connector end.
There are two (or three) same-sized notches on the respective position of the male connector end that rests inside the dents of the female part. Take a metal pin, screwdriver or, something similar that fits inside the little holes.
Gently push the screwdriver inward, pressing the notch of the male counterpart like a button, and apply pressure on the hose to pull it out at the same time. Slowly increase the pressure until the hose comes out partially. Repeat the same process and release all the notches until the hose comes out free.
However, be careful not to scratch/damage the notches. Otherwise, they will not lock properly the next you use it. Thus, it is better if you can avoid using sharp items for this.
To lock the new hose, simply put the male part in position and push it in. Make sure that the notches of the hose and the holes of the female connector are aligned.
Once you head a small “click,” your new hose is installed properly. In case you didn’t get the click, then try rotating the hose left or right. This should ensure that the hose sits properly.
If the inlet of your shop vac has a threaded face, that means you will need to use a threaded hose as well. Removing and installing a new threaded hose is as simple as opening a bottle of Coca-Cola.
All you really need to do is just hold the hose firmly with one hand and hold the vac with the other. Start turning the hose clockwise to unlock the hose. Did I forget to mention that the threads are reversed? I may have. Yes, the threads are reversed. Why so? No idea. Anyway, a clockwise turn will unlock the hose from the vac.
Installing the new hose is just as easy. Put it in place and rotate it counterclockwise until all the threads are covered.
One important thing to keep in mind, grab the hose on the thick and rigid end of the hose. Never try to turn the hose holding it on the soft parts. It has a high chance of breaking the hose.
If your shop vac has neither of the two mentioned above, or if it had one, but you had to cut the part off, resulting in a plain old end, then cuff couplers are one of the very few options you have available to connect the hose with the vac.
To do so, Take a scrap piece of rigid pipe with an outer diameter of the same size as the inner diameter of the inlet of your shop vac. Insert the piece of pipe halfway in the inlet and fix it in place either by glue or by some other means.
Then insert the other end into the hose and tighten it with a cuff coupler. Next time you need to change the hose, you will need to unlock the coupler.
For this, you might need to cut off the connector from the hose. Because those are genuinely rigid, and a cuff coupler is not the best option for a rigid object. It will work on the squishy soft part.
Removing and changing the hose of a shop vac is a fairly simple task. And this is one of the most performed maintenance works done inside a workshop. It will turn into a habit very soon once you start attending it relatively frequently.
However, it may seem a little daunting the first few times. But that is a part of learning, and learning is never the easiest thing to do. I tried to explain the process as simply as I could, and if you followed closely, the process of changing the hose of a shop vac should be fun. Just like another DIY project almost.