If you have a house or workplace with many trees, especially during autumn, you will have a lot of leaves to clean up.
Having the best commercial leaf vacuum in your gardening toolkit makes it easier and quicker to gather the leaves from outside areas than using a broom.
Choosing the Correct Model
There are many different models of leaf vacuums available on the market. Knowing the difference between the various blowers and vacuums available will help you choose the machine best suited to your needs.
We will help to guide you.
Leaf Blower versus Leaf Vacuum or Combo Blower/Vac
Although leaf blowers have a considerable advantage over using a leaf rake and are effective in clearing leaves quickly from a large yard into one place, you still have to dispose of these leaves in one way or another.
With a leaf vacuum, the leaves are sucked directly into a bag. Most handheld and wheeled model vacuum models have a toothed impeller that shreds the leaves, resulting in a mulch that takes up a fraction of the whole leaves' space and is better suited to composting.
Manufacturers are constructing a blower and vacuum combo with mulching capabilities that come with a vacuum tube and blower tube that allows the commercial leaf vacuum to change from blowing to vacuuming with ease.
When choosing which leaf vacuum to purchase, the following factors are worth considering:
When deciding on which type to choose, consider what weight you will be able to carry and the area you will have to cover.
- Handheld leaf vacuums are the smallest and least powerful but often the lightest and most affordable. A handheld vacuum is carried over your shoulder and comes with a small vacuum bag best suited for small areas.
Handheld models can be vacuum only or a combo that can work as a blower too. They are powered either electrically via a cord or cordless using a rechargeable battery.
- Backpack leaf packs distribute most of the weight evenly on the user's back. In addition, these bags are much larger and can hold more leaves than the handheld model, thus requiring emptying less often. These models have leaf blowing as the primary function
- Walk-behind leaf vacuums look like lawnmowers and suck the leaves up into a large collection sack. These models often include a mulch function and hold the most leaves. However, they are more expensive, and leaf-blowing or sweeping is impossible.
There are three power sources: gas, electric, and battery-powered. Each option can affect the running time and suction capability of the vacuum.
- Gas-powered models have sufficient power to cover large areas and remove large amounts of leaves. Suction power is strong enough to vacuum both dry and wet leaves. Due to its extra power and suction ability, gas models are the preferred commercial use model for many contractors.
These leaf vacuums run off gasoline and, as with most gas-powered tools, require regular maintenance to ensure the longevity of the power tool. On the negative side, these models tend to be more expensive, are much louder, and emit fuels that contaminate the environment.
- Corded electric leaf vacuums are less expensive, quieter, and easier to maintain, plus they are more eco-friendly because they don't emit any fumes.
Factors against electric vacuums are that they are not as powerful as gas-powered units, and the length of your extension cord will determine the area you can cover.
- Battery-powered leaf vacuums are cordless with rechargeable batteries and are quiet and lightweight but do not have the power of the other power units and need recharging periodically. Purchasing an additional set of batties would reduce this problem.
The speed at which air rushes up the vacuum tube is rated in mph (miles per hour). Most units run between 110 and 180 mph.
CFM (cubic feet per minute) describes how much air moves through the vacuum in sixty seconds and indicates how powerful the unit is. CFM ratings for leaf vacuums range between 150 to 600 CFM.
Dry, loosely held leaves require less power to suck up than picking up wet matted leaves that require higher power; thus, a leaf vacuum with a higher mph and CFM rating is preferable. 200 CFM would be inadequate to pick up wet, matted leaves or vacuum a large area.
Collection Bag Capacity and Weight to Carry
Ensure that the collection bag you choose is large enough to reduce the number of trips required to empty the pack but will still be light enough to carry around and be comfortable.
For example, most leaf vacuums double as blowers and mulchers; thus, choosing a vacuum with a high mulching ratio is advisable so that the leaves occupy less space. Shoulder strapped bags allow you to strap them on your shoulder and carry it effortlessly as the weight increases.
The following Commercial Leaf Vacuums are worth considering if you are looking for a unit to clear and remove leaves from your yard:
Toro 51621 UltraPlus Leaf Blower Vacuum, Variable Speed with Metal Impeller
- Style: Blower Vacuum
- Speed: 250 mph
- Air Flow Capacity 410 CFM
- Item Weight 9 lb
- Lightweight design. Easily maneuverable
- Powerful 410 CFM vacuum mode
- Patented shred-all shred ring and oscillating tube
- The Impeller is metal and solid
- Variable speed control and easy to switch from blow to vacuum
- Good bag design. Removing mulch is quick and easy
- The Toro Leaf Vacuum requires an extension cord, but it is easier to secure an extension cord to the blower with a built-in cord lock.
The Torro UltraPlus Leaf Vacuum is a powerful three-in-one leaf blower, high-speed vacuum, and leaf shredder designed for medium to large yards with heavy debris to make the clearing of your yard a breeze.
This powerful, lightweight 12 A, variable speed electric motor can move up to 410 CFM of air at speeds as high as 250 mph. The metal impeller shredder will grind leaves up to a 16:1 ratio in vacuum mode.
It comes with a patented Shredz-All shred ring which reduces large leaves by up to 97% of your mulched leaves into pieces a half-inch or smaller, and the bottom dump zipper on the bag empties the vacuum bag fast and easy.
The vacuum model has an oscillating nozzle that sweeps air back and forth to get a wider blowing path on hard surfaces, saving you time and effort.
With the oscillating nozzle installed, the whole unit will weigh about 8 lbs. you can carry it by hand or attach a shoulder strap.
Black + Decker 3 in 1 Electric Leaf Blower & Mulcher with Leaf Vacuum Kit BV6000
- Style: 3-in1 Leaf Blower/Vacuum
- Speed: 250 mph
- Air Flow Capacity 400 CFM
- Item Weight 1 lb
- No tools needed to change from blower to vacuum
- Easy to use and lightweight
- Powerful, relatively quiet 12 amp motor
- Variable speed control
- Customer reviews indicate that the bag is weak and does not last long.
The Black + Becker BV6000 has a 12 amp corded electric motor that can operate as a blower, a vacuum, and a mulcher. Converting the unit from a blower to a vacuum or vice versa is a simple operation.
If you do not like leaf blowers, you can use this unit solely for vacuuming. It has a powerful vacuuming capacity, and the mulcher reduces debris by 16:1. It has two-speed settings.
Work on low settings and change to high settings if leaves are wet or clogging occurs.
The Black + Decker is sturdy and durable, with solid plastic components used to construct this unit. Although using metal impellers is recommended for mulching, reviews regarding mulching effectiveness are generally positive.
It is comfortable to use, weighing only 8.1 lbs, and is well balanced with well-placed handles making it possible to use without a shoulder strap, but if you plan on working for long hours at a time, it is advisable to invest in a good shoulder strap.
It is quieter than most commercial leaf vacuum/blowers at 68 Dba. In addition, it comes with a 1.5-bushel collection bag with a reusable leaf bag design that is easy to empty.
Husqvarna 2-cycle Gas Handheld Leaf Blower/Vacuum
- Style: Blower/Vacuum
- Power Source 28cc 2-cycle gas engine
- Speed 170 mph
- Air Flow Capacity 425 CFM
- Item Weight 6 lb
- Inline design
- Cruise control
- Good vacuum and mulching function
- Husqvarna 125BV Is loud. It may be above the permitted noise range of some homeowner associations
- Weight of the unit
The Husqvarna 125BV is a 2-cycle gas leaf blower/vacuum that has a Vac-Kit for vacuuming and mulching. It is easy to start, and an auto-return stop switch automatically resets the unit for easier starting.
The blower tube is directly in line with the handle and reduces the rotational force on the wrist. It also features cruise control for easier handling and to minimize hand fatigue.
Though the Husqvarna 125BV weighs 9.6lb,. It comes with a wide shoulder strap for the mulch collection bag that is comfortable, fully adjustable, and easy to clip and unclip.
The mulching bag, constructed of heavy-duty, durable material, has a good quality zipper
The 2-cycle gas unit uses a fuel mix of 50:1 gasoline to 2-cycle oil. With air movement of 425 CFM, it quickly sucks up large quantities of leaves, twigs, and small cones even when the debris is wet without clogging. It has a mulching ratio of 16:1.
- An extra battery is advisable
- The suction tube tends to clog up with wet debris
The Greenworks Leaf Vacuum 24322 has a brushless, battery-operated motor. Its 4Ah 40 V LI-ION battery with a charger included has a standard, full charge run of up to 21 minutes.
Being cordless eliminates the risk of tripping over cables
The Greenworks 24322 is handheld, making it easier to handle and carry than larger leaf vacuums. A helpful feature is a low-high button plus a 5-speed thumbwheel allowing you to turn the speed down to protect flower beds and increase battery time.
The battery time of the 4ah 40V battery is almost 45 minutes when used on low power; however, if used at max capacity, the time is reduced to 21 minutes.
If you have a large yard to clean, it is advisable to get a spare battery as recharging will take about two hours.
The vacuum draws in air at five-speed options up to 235mph with an airflow volume of 380 CFM and is suitable for small to medium-sized areas with moderate leaf accumulation. A plastic impeller breaks up the leaves to a mulch ratio of 10:1
The Sun Joe SBJ606E features an interchangeable tube design to convert the unit to a blower, vacuum, mulcher, or a gutter cleaner, powered by a powerful 14 amp plug-in electric motor
The interchangeable tube design can convert from blower to vacuum in seconds. It is a corded model and will require an extension lead if covering a large area.
A Cord Lock Mechanism prevents the cord from being unplugged during use.
The SBJ606E has a 6-speed setting to adjust the air output to suit your requirements. The vacuum with an airflow capacity of 440 CFM sucks up all debris, including wet leaves, into an 18gallon collection bag.
The mulcher with metal impellers has a mulching ratio of 16:1
Best Commercial Leaf Vacuum – Conclusion
The Toro 51621 UltraPlus Leaf Blower Vacuum, Variable Speed with Metal Impeller, is the Best Commercial Leaf Vacuum of the leaf vacuums tested.
Although the Husqvarna and the Greenworks 24322 are the best gas and cordless models tested, additional costs such as purchasing gasoline and recharging batteries count against them as the Best overall Leaf Vacuum.
Of the three corded electrical Commercial Leaf Vacuums tested, the Toro 51621 UltraPlus Leaf Blower Vacuum is the most cost-effective, with a high speed of 250 mph and an Air Flow Capacity of 410 CFM, has a lightweight design, and is easily maneuverable.
The metal impeller is solid and produces a mulch ratio of 16:1. In addition, the Torro 51621 has variable speed control and can easily switch from blower to vacuum mode. The unit has a well-designed bag that makes removing mulch quick and easy.