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Who makes the best ash vac?

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by jonnyd, Jan 12, 2008.

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  1. jonnyd

    jonnyd New Member

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    hey guys Im relatively new to this whole pellet stove thing and apparently my wife is starting to revolt against cleaning out the ashes with our daughters toy shovel. sooooo, I guess I have to break down and buy the little lady an ash vac. are these things all generally of the same quality or do some companies stick out as far as quality goes. any info would be greatly appreciated. I dont need a hot ash vac I dont htink. thanks

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  2. jtp10181

    jtp10181 Minister of Fire

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    If you don't plan on sucking up hot ashes you can just get a shop-vac from the hardware store and by filters rated for drywall dust of "HEPA" filters. The really cheap filters will let some ash through them.

    MoHeat also made a post a while about about a home-made ash vac that I think used a bucket of water to trap the ashes before they made it to the vacuum.
  3. jonnyd

    jonnyd New Member

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    ok thanks, so there is no need for a specific ash vac... i dont have a shop vac so i would have to get that anyway ...would it be easier for me to just get the ash vac ...instead of getting the shop vac with the special filters?????do you know of any brands of ash vacs that are worth buying???
  4. jtp10181

    jtp10181 Minister of Fire

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    All I know is ash vac cost a LOT more than a normal shop-vac. Other than that I have no experience with them.
  5. jonnyd

    jonnyd New Member

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    ok....is there anyone who knows about ash vacs ..i think i want a hot ash vac this way i dont have to wait for it to cool correct????
  6. fraxinus

    fraxinus Feeling the Heat

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    There are a couple of vacuums on the market which bill themselves as hot ash resistant. They are very pricey ($200+) and if you read the fine print they are not designed for truly hot ashes. I don't know if it would work in your particular stove, but I've been very pleased with the Ashtrap (purchased just this year) for removing truly hot ash with very minimal mess. The small amount of inevitable fine fly ash I deal with by using a 5 gallon Shopvac equipped with a bag filter designed for ash and drywall dust.
  7. jeffd

    jeffd New Member

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    Virginia
    http://www.lovelessash.com/

    Sold a zillion of these where I used to work... They are a high quality unit. Doubt they are 100% fireproof though.
  8. Henz

    Henz New Member

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    "The Crickett vac"
  9. kalevi

    kalevi Member

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    A standard shop vac uses bags. You buy the bags that can handle dry wall dust instead of the standard bags if you are going to be sucking up ash.
  10. MainePellethead

    MainePellethead Minister of Fire

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    Thats what I have is a 2.5 h.p 6 gallon shop vac I bought for the stove(prob will use it elsewhere too lol....) It does a great job...doesnt take long for the ash to cool down....paid enough for the stove, I'm not gonna go for another 200+ for an ash vac lol...
  11. Tailrace

    Tailrace New Member

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    Bullville NY
    Shop Vac here too.... I've got a nice little 5 gal. Shop Vac that a buddy gave to me and it works perfectly for cleaning my stove. I just got done changing the bag on mine and giving my stove a thorough cleaning...NICE!
  12. davevassar

    davevassar Member

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    I've never seen a shop vac that uses a bag.
  13. johnnywarm

    johnnywarm Minister of Fire

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    I use a shop vac. it did catch on fire once. After you you are done, empy it as soon as you are done. They do work good.
  14. kalevi

    kalevi Member

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    Sorry, I meant filter. Brain was working on something else when I responded. I have a small shop vac and you just have to buy the right filters for drywall. You also have to clean and change them fairly often if you suck up the drywall dust and ash.
  15. Xena

    Xena Minister of Fire

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    If you don't want to wait for the stove to cool down
    then I think your best bet is either the Cheetah or
    the Cougar by Loveless. Saw a lot of folks on other
    forums mention they have one and never heard a bad thing
    about them.
  16. MainePellethead

    MainePellethead Minister of Fire

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    Yes.....its a wet/dry vac(shop vac) that uses a bag or just the filter and no bag........I love mine!
  17. hearthtools

    hearthtools Moderator Emeritus

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    Ho need to buy a ash vac.
    Even the ASH VAC type vacuums say not to vacuum hot ashes.

    In all our service truck we use a metal canned SHOP VAC brand vacuum.
    A vacuum will last us a few years on abuse and getting left in rain Thrown around the back of a truck
    i rebuild the motors after that.

    with a Paper filter.
    http://www.shopvac.com/images_accessories/90304.jpg
    and then the secondary Super Performance Dacron® Full Cloth Filter
    http://www.shopvac.com/images_accessories/90637.jpg
    This filter stops the heavy ash from collecting in the paper filter.
    http://www.shopvac.com/detail.asp?id=171

    We replace the Paper cartridge filter about 2 -3 times a year in year vacuum.
    the secondary will last 1 - 2 years of our use but home use FOREVER.



    No dust every comes in the 100's of home we use them in to service pellet stove every day.

    Another trick is we us the larger hose Shop VAC hose.
    then use a short 3/4 polly hose for a Suction hose for cleaning the nooks and crannies.
    A spray paint can lid fits over the large SHOP VAC hose you cut a smaller hole in the cap to put the 3/4 polly hose into to adapt down.

    The problem with the commercial ASH vacs are they dont have a lot of lift or large hose to suck up large chunks and or pellets.
    some like the Cheetah you have to buy the expensive bags.
  18. tinkabranc

    tinkabranc Minister of Fire

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    I have one like the loveless ash vac. Got it cheap for $30 at a
    going out of business sale at a local fireplace/stove shop this summer.
    Has a small dent on the side but has no effect on the operation.
  19. stoveguy2esw

    stoveguy2esw Minister of Fire

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    i have a loveless ash vac myself,works great , while not "fireproof" the filter is "fire resistant" so if you suck up a hot ember its not going to hurt it , but you still need to shut down to use one. the body of the vac is simply a steel 5 gal. bucket , the vac is bult into the top. one very nice feature they have is a "shaker" that clears the filter without having to open up the vac, just screw off this little tube thingy and shake the rod around and you are back to full suction. no ash release in the home at all. they are in the 200+ range, but i like mine and wouldnt go back to a shop vac after using the loveless.
  20. carlie1784

    carlie1784 New Member

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    I have a lovelees cougar ash vac{the cheetah is quiter] works great metal hose fire resistant filters. I got mine on Ebay, A buy it now or make an offer but not a bid . I made an offer of $180.00 and received ashvac. A friend lit his shop vac on fire thinking he was vacing cool ash.For piece of mind go with somthing that can vac hot ash cause more than likly you will be vacing some at some point. Only bad thing is they are noisy.
  21. Mr Whitfield

    Mr Whitfield Feeling the Heat

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    I have to agree with Mike, I love my Love-Less Ash Vac. I had a shop vac, the ash vac is much better. The ash vac will last along time. Check E-Bay you can find some great deals.
  22. jamorris

    jamorris New Member

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    Ohio
    Check your local hardware store. I use a bag in my shop vacs, this is in addition to the HEPA filter I have installed. It makes it easier to clean out the vac when full. But, it will reduce power just a bit.

    Jerry
  23. cntbill

    cntbill New Member

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    I was at my local Sears the other day and they sell bags for shop vac's, mostly from what I seen it was for there brand, but notice on one said it would fit most 5 gal vacs.

    Paste from sears.com ->

    Craftsman Filter Bags for Wet-Dry Vac, 2 pk. Sears item# 00917896000 Mfr. model# 17896 high-efficiency filter bags collect ultra fine particles and drywall dust. Fits wet-dry vacs #17761 and #17762. Dry pick-up, non-hazardous, non-toxic, non-flammable materials only.

    <- end paste.

    Not that I am trying to promote Sears shop vacs, but yes they do make bags for them. :)
  24. pegdot

    pegdot New Member

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    Upstate, SC
    Lowe's sells the dry wall dust bags for the shop vacs as well. I was cleaning my stove yesterday and my big shop vac bit the bullet. Oh well.....I've been wanting a new one anyway. ;-)
  25. CygnusX1

    CygnusX1 Feeling the Heat

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    Central MA
    It really depends on how impatient you are to wait for the stove to cool down.

    I turn my stove off, let it cool down and clean it with my shop-vac.

    $200.00 + is too much for a single use tool.
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