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October 28, 2021

Professional Tool Reviews for Pros


Milwaukee M12 Fuel 1.6-gallon Wet-Dry Vac

Milwaukee M12 Wet/Dry Vac

Milwaukee Touts Highest Performance from 12V Wet-Dry Vac

To-date, the only M12 vacuum (model 0850) looked like a Dustbuster. Now, Milwaukee has expanded the 12V lineup with an M12 Fuel 1.6-gallon Wet-Dry Vac (0960-21). The company claims it provides 18V performance on a 12V battery platform. Milwaukee also touts this as the most compact wet-dry vac available today. Lastly, it has a noise profile that sounds off at half the decibel level of other vacs in its class.


10-Second Summary

  • Model: Milwaukee 0960-21
  • Brushless motor generates 45CFM and 42″ water lift
  • Washable HEPA filter
  • Up to 26 minutes runtime with 6.0Ah battery
  • 11.9 x 13.7 x 8.7 in. and 10.6 lbs.
  • Wall mountable
  • Internal accessory storage; includes crevice tool, utility tool, hose, and wall mount kit
  • 87 dBA
  • 5-year warranty
  • Available late 2020/early 2021

18V Performance from a 12V Platform

The brushless motor on the Milwaukee M12 Fuel Wet-Dry Vac provides up to 40% more suction than many 18V wet-dry vacs on the market. It delivers up to 45 CFM and 42-inches of water lift—that’s less CFM, but more suction power than the impressive Makita 18V XCV11 wet/dry vacuum we tested earlier this year. And, everything filters through a washable HEPA filter.

Milwaukee M12 Wet/Dry Vac

Runtime always presents an issue with vacuums and blowers. Surprisingly, with a 6.0Ah battery installed, the Milwaukee 0960-21 runs for up to 14 minutes on High and 26 minutes in its Low setting. The fact that it has two modes bodes well. As a smaller, 1.6-gallon task-cleanup vacuum, 10-14 minutes of run-time can likely take care of most small jobsite cleanup. We’re thinking drywall cutout dust and similar localized messes.

One of the benefits of going the 12V route with a battery platform revolves around the weight and space savings. And the Milwaukee M12 Fuel Wet-Dry Vac takes advantage of that with a compact and stackable design that stores neatly in your van or on your cart. With a 11.9″ x 13.7″ x 8.7″ frame, the vacuum weighs in at 10.6 lbs.


Milwaukee M12 Wet/Dry Vac

Organization and Accessory Storage

For even more space management, the M12 Wet-Dry Vac features a hanging mount that lets you attach the vac to walls and fixtures. It features enclosed internal accessory storage that houses the hose, crevice tool, utility tool, and wall mount kit. We love this as we frequently drop or misplace any accessory that doesn’t have a home.

Finally, the Milwaukee M12 Fuel Wet-Dry Vac won’t kill your (or anyone else’s) eardrums. At 87 dBA, you can comfortably run this vacuum in occupied spaces.

Expect the Milwaukee M12 Fuel Wet-Dry Vac to hit stores toward the end of this year or early next year. The $199 kit includes a battery (we’re hoping 6Ah) and charger. It will also come with a 5-year warranty on the tool and a 3-year warranty on the battery.

Milwaukee M12 Fuel Wet-Dry Vac Specs

  • Model: Milwaukee 0960-21
  • Air volume: 45 CFM
  • Sealed suction in water: 42 in.
  • Capacity: 1.6 gallons
  • Inlet diameter: 1-1/4 in.
  • Dimensions (HxLxW): 11.9 x 13.7 x 8.7 in.
  • Weight: 10.6 lbs.
  • Warranty: 5-year tool, 3-year battery
  • Price: $199

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