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Do you have a barbeque or a fireplace? If so, you probably know how annoying it is to clean the ashes from there.
You’ve probably tried cleaning ash by hand. Not only you can burn yourself on some hot residue, but you can even inhale some of that debris flying around. In the long term, this could cause severe lung issues.
Cleaning hot and cold ash is equally as messy and dangerous. However, if you have an ash vacuum, the chore becomes simple, safe, and even fun to do.
We’ve researched the best ash vacuum for you with our own pros and cons.
Continue reading as we discuss several of the top ash vacuums with their features and specifications.
|Product||Weight||Canister Capacity||Power Cord|
|8.8 lbs||4.8 Gal||8.5 ft|
|9.53 lbs||5 Gal||16.4 ft|
|15.3 lbs||4 Gal||16 ft|
|24.4 lbs||3.5 Gal||15 ft|
|13 lbs||5.2 Gal||16 ft|
|5 lbs||5 Gal||N/A|
|11 lbs||5.3 Gal||N/A|
|12.3 lbs||6 Gal||N/A|
Ash Vacuum Reviews
Snow Joe SHJ201
If you’re sure you’ll only vacuum cold ash, you should consider this ash vacuum. It’s designed to pick up cold debris from pellet and wood stoves, firepits, fireplaces, and BBQ grills.
The SHJ201 has a reusable fine dust cartridge filter that helps reduce clogging and is quite easy to clean. On top of that, it has a dual filtration system made of pre-filter pleated filter that’s meant to clean all the ashes dust-free.
One of the best things is that you won’t have to clean the ash vacuum constantly. It comes with an extra-large metal canister that can store up to 4.8 gallons of particles.
This is a powerful ash vacuum that features 4 Amp motor generating up to 500W of continuous suction power. It’s easy to use and carry around as it weighs 8.82 pounds.
- Large capacity
- Dual filtration system
- Reduce clogging
- Cannot clean hot particles
If you’re after something that can clean both cold and warm particles, you should take a closer look at the PVC03A by Tacklife.
It’s specifically built to clean both cold and warm wood ash out of your fireplace, wood burner, wood stove, pellet stove, and BBQ grill.
The ash vacuum comes with a dual filtration system that’s fire-resistant, washable and reusable. The system is made to filter out finest dust as well as ashes.
This one can clean hot ashes thanks to its heat-resistant metal hose and canister. The hose is flexible and easy to work with regardless of the shape of your fireplace or stove. It’s quiet but still powerful with an 800W motor allowing up to 15 Kpa of suction power. The machine comes with a user manual.
- Picks up cold and hot debris
- Large capacity
- Flexible and heat-resistant hose
- Filters require often cleaning
Plow & Hearth 13997
This Plow & Hearth model is ideal for small ashy messes. Though it’s large in capacity, it includes only one filter which makes it tricky to clean bigger areas.
However, you have the option of purchasing two additional filters separately. With this addition, the machine can perform much better when it comes to picking up large quantities.
It comes with a 4-gallon stainless steel base with wheels, a handle, and a 10’ hose. The construction and maneuverability of these components make the ash vacuum quite simple to use. Keep in mind that it weighs a bit over 15 pounds. There are lighter ash vacuums as well if weight is a factor for you.
It features a 10-Amp motor that sucks both cold and warm ash. Make sure that hot ash isn’t warmer than 140° since you might melt some of the components. It comes with crevice and brush tools, pellet stove hose and a storage bag.
- Heavy Duty: has a powerful 10-amp motor.
- Heat-Resistant: vacuums wash ash up to 140°F.
- Quick, Clean & Easy: extra-long 10’L hose, 16’L power cord
- Item Weight: 15.3 pounds
- Works with cold and warm particles
- Comes with several attachments
- It’s a bit heavy
BACOENG 5.3 Gallon Cleaner Filtration
This is a multi-functional vacuum you can use for cleaning ash as well as any dry debris. It’s excellent for most indoor jobs, thanks to its features and specifications.
It comes with a double-stage filtration that prevents fine particles from getting back into your breathing space. This also protects the motor from being damaged by these fine pieces of dust.
It features 10-Amp motor and heating protection for continuous suction power, better performance, and more safety. On top of that, the vac has a filling level indicator that tells when it’s time to empty the canister.
BACOENG also comes with a 5-foot extended lined-metal hose along with the 15-foot cable for better maneuverability in tight spaces. It includes a HEPA filter, filter bag, extension wands, upholstery nozzle, crevice nozzle, and a Combi-attachment for different floors.
- Long hose and cable
- Level indicator
- It weighs 24.4 pounds
PowerSmith PAVC101 Amp Ash Vacuum
If you don’t have as much time to wait for the particles to cool, you might try this PowerSmith vacuum. It’s designed to pick up both cold and warm ash from your wood stove, fireplace, BBQ grill, and pellet stove.
This ash vacuum comes with a washable and replaceable filtration system that’s also fire-resistant. It’s efficient in filtering out the finest dust and ash particles.
The included hose is also fire-resistant as it’s made of metal as is the canister. Overall, the ash vacuum is powerful thanks to its 10-Amp motor, but it’s also reasonably quiet.
It comes with a 16-foot cord and a few additional accessories such as two straight extension wands, turbo nozzle, and brush nozzle. You can also use it as a regular shop vacuum to clean messes that don’t include ash.
- For both cold and warm debris
- Comes with several attachments
- Level indicator
- The exhaust gets very hot
This one is designed for ash and dust, so you can use it for more than just collecting debris from your grill, oven, fireplace, etc.
It comes with an aluminum hose and a steel dust canister. It’s built in a way to allow vacuuming of warm ash as well as cold. The components are quite resistant though make sure it isn’t hotter than 104° Fahrenheit.
The vac sports continuous, strong suction and is ideal for highly dust and ashy areas. Its HEPA filtration keeps everything clean and collects even the tiniest particles.
It’s a 5-gallon unit with a 3.3-foot hose that’s easy to maneuver within tight and hard-to-reach areas. It weighs about 13 pounds and is relatively easy to carry around thanks to the wheels it comes with.
- Strong suction
- Suitable for dust as well
- HEPA filtration
- No replacement filters
Costway Ash Vacuum Cleaner
This 5.3-gallon ash vacuum is made to suck in both hot and cold ash from your wood and pellet stove, barbeque grill, fireplace, etc. It’s easy to use and won’t disturb your neighbors since it only emits 76 decibels.
It comes with a washable and replaceable filter that’s fire-resistant. It filters the smallest dust and particles, exhausting only clean air back into your breathing space. The filter requires often cleaning, but you can reuse it many times again.
This one comes with several attachments such as aluminum nozzle, fire-resistant HEPA filter, and a user manual to help you with your first use. It also features a 1.3m metal pipe that’s flexible and easy to maneuver with around tight and hard-to-reach areas.
It weighs approximately 11 pounds, which is fairly standard for ash vacuums.
- Weight: 11 lbs
- Capacity: 5.3 Gallon
- Quiet Working: The ash vacuum cleaner emits a maximum sound of only 76 decibels
- Additional Features: Replaceable fire-resistant filter system, HEPA filter
- For cold and hot ash
- HEPA filter
- Comes with several attachments
- No wheels
Channellock 6 Gal.
This Channellock vac is intended for both indoor and outdoor use on your fireplace, grill, wood stove, etc.
It’s powered by an 8-Amp motor but is relatively quiet and won’t disturb your household. It comes on a sturdy and strong base with rolling casters allowing easier maneuverability. The vac can be reversed if you ever need to use it as a blower, which is quite convenient.
To discard the waste, remove the powerhead, and throw the contents out. Another thing worth noting is that the machine is made for cold particles only.
The ash vacuum comes with a heat-resistant filter, 8’ power cord with a wrap, 4’ aluminum hose, and cord storage. It also features LED lights and onboard hose for more comfortable use. The handle on top makes it easier to carry the machine around even though it weighs some 12 pounds.
- LED light
- Heat-resistant filter
- Can work as a blower
- Cold ash only
What is an Ash Vacuum?
In most cases, ash remains hot for hours after the fire is out. This makes vacuuming it a bit tricky since most of the popular vacuums that we know, have plastic components and paper filters. Needless to say, such construction isn’t as suitable for cleaning possibly warm ashes.
For this reason, you need a different kind of vacuum, and that’s where ash vacuums come into play. These are made of mostly metal and aluminum components and come with fire-resistant filters.
Still, some can only clean cold ash while others can handle warm to hot as well. It depends on the material used to make the canister as well as the hose. If there’s even minimal amount of plastic, the vacuum should only be used on cold ash.
What you want is a perfect blend of resistance and maneuverability. Some products come with several attachments and are also suitable for indoor use on dust and dirt.
Why Should You Clean Your Fireplace?
Different things can block and clog your chimney depending on how often you use your fireplace. Soot, built-up creosote and blockages are dangerous in more ways than one.
This is why you should get your fireplace and chimney cleaned regularly. Though cleaning ashes out of the fireplace is relatively easy with an ash vacuum, chimney cleaning should be left to professionals.
When the area is clean, it’s much safer to use, and there aren’t as many risks attached to the operation. This is quite important since even the smallest accumulation of creosote can potentially cause a chimney fire.
It’s a highly flammable substance that builds up as a result of burning fire. The rate of accumulation is higher if your fireplace isn’t working properly or you’re not cleaning it regularly.
Though different wood creates a different amount of creosote, it’s still critical to clean the area of all the ash to prevent more unnecessary buildup.
On another hand, it’s quite hard to start a fire in a fireplace that already contains ash from the last time you used it. For this reason, you should use an ash vacuum to pick up the cold or warm particles and get your fireplace ready for the next time.
Different Types of Stoves for Cleaning
Some stoves are different than others, and as such, they require special cleaning and maintenance. In most cases, cleaning these stoves is relatively simple if you have a quality ash vacuum to help you with the job. Here’s the main difference between wood and pellet stoves that you should know of.
Pellet stoves are among the most popular heating solutions. It looks much like, but how it operates is much more modern and innovative.
It has a hopper that you have to fill with pellets made from sawdust. The other thing you have to do is set the thermostat, and that’s all.
The stove deposits the pellets into a pot where the temperatures are so high that there’s almost no creosote, ash or emissions. This means cleaner inside as well as outside. In most cases, these stoves are nearly twice as efficient as traditional woodstoves.
A proper woodstove is much more efficient than a traditional fireplace. They’re much different than what they used to look like and can make a significant difference in your heating bill.
The fuel for these stoves is cheap and renewable, and what’s best of all, you don’t require petroleum. In most cases, there’s also less pollution than what a fireplace would produce.
Still, a woodstove is only efficient if the installation on your house is as efficient. If the house installation isn’t as impressive, you might not get much from your woodstove.
Tips on Cleaning a Fireplace with The Best Ash Vacuum
- The first thing you should do is make sure you have an appropriate vacuum for the ash you’re vacuuming. This mostly refers to the temperature. After your fire is out, you should let the ashes cool down to the allowed temperature that your ash vacuum can handle. If your machine can only handle cold ash, let it cool completely.
- If you notice the suction isn’t as powerful anymore, you might have to clean the filters. Most of these ash vacuums come with washable and reusable filters you should clean from time to time. Some machines can be used as blowers which makes it easier to clean the filter.
- To prolong the life of your machine, make sure not to skip on cleaning and maintenance. Don’t let ashes sit in the container for too long since it could become damp and harder to empty. Ideally, you should clean all tools after each use, so the ash vacuum is ready for the next time you need it.
- Clean your fireplace after each fire, or at least after each second. The more often you do it, the less buildup you’ll have in your chimney.
- Avoid using a blower to remove the ash since most of it will end up in your breathing space, which is dangerous.
- Make sure you use an ash vacuum instead of a traditional floor vac. Most have HEPA filters that are among the most efficient to trap the finest particles.
- If you’re sensitive, you should use a dust mask to protect yourself from inhaling any of these particles. Also, you should wear some long sleeves to protect your skin.
- People who suffer from lung or heart disease should consult their doctors before coming as near such fine particles.
- Every time you vacuum stuff out of your fireplace or stove, you should also clean the floors of the room where that took place. If the ash is outdoors, you should do some gentle sweeping.
- Make sure not to empty the vacuum container into water and storm drains. Instead, dispose of all the debris in the regular trash.
Can I vacuum Ash with a Shop Vac?
A: You probably already know the different types of ash vacuums and what they’re intended for. While upright, canister and stick units are ideal to use around the house, they’re terrible for cleaning ash.
Try avoiding everything else when it comes to picking up ashes from your fireplace, BBQ, wood stove, etc. The reason behind this is mainly the materials and components most regular vacuums come with. Upright, canister and even shop vacuums feature many plastic parts that aren’t suitable for handling warm ash.
Where can I buy an Ash Vacuum?
A: While these are fairly easy to find, by far the best place to buy them at is Lowe’s. It’s where you get the most choices when it comes to capacity, attachments, and warranty deals.
What can I do with Firepit Ash?
A: Make winter traction – spread firepit ashes on driveways and sidewalks to melt ice. You might not get the same results you’d get with salt, but you’ll get some traction making the paths somewhat less slippery.
Use it on garden soil – if you burn wood, you have ashes rich in minerals that are useful to plants.
Repel slugs – sprinkle ashes around plants to irritate and repel slugs. Still, you might have to repeat the process after each rain.
Clean metal and glass – hardwood ash is ideal for cleaning grime and grease and for tarnishing on silverware, glass, grills, and ovenware. It’s a great way to remove residue from labels and stickers.
At this point, you probably picked one of the ash vacuums we’ve reviewed above. These are the top of what the market has to offer, so you can hardly make a mistake in choosing one.
Use our Buyer’s Guide to figure out and consider the most critical factors that can help you make the final decision. Choosing an ash vacuum isn’t as hard though you should think about a few things before you opt for any of the above.
The right machine can make all the difference in how you maintain and use your fireplace, BBQ, pellet, or wood stove. Consider your needs and preferences, and we’re sure that one of the vacs above will satisfy them with ease.