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on November 29, 2003
I can't believe some people are dissing this because they thought it could be a shop vac replacement. If it could, no one would buy any shop vacs! And I also can't believe people think that this kind of money would buy them a charger and battery all included. Not exactly reasonable expectations.
What IS reasonable is to expect this to be a great tool for quick clean ups. Hanging pics, minor trim projects, installed closets, etc. All things that generate a mess that isn't worth setting up a shop vac, including hauling a probably dirty and bulky unit into the house, or worse a customer's house, running a cord etc. for a 2 minute clean up. If you want to clean up your car quick or pick up some dust or shavings from a smaller job, this IS the ticket. I have even used it as dust collection on my miter for that occasional cut or two.
If you are already a DeWalt user with batteries and chargers for other tools, this is a great complement to your gear. If not, it certainly doesn't warrant going out and buying the charger and battery for a stand alone vacuum. Use your head.
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on July 10, 2005
Very handly tool for small clean up jobs. Great suction for its size. Is compatable with other 1-1/4" accessories as from Home Depot or Sears if needed.

Opposite end is good for blowing light debris into a more confined area. Very light in weight even with a battery.

Do not expect the power of one battery to last all day so have another battery(s)on hand if you are a neat-nick.

Does not have a shoulder strap but has clip hoops if you buy your own.

You should have an extension cord handy as it has a 6'cord. This is a great little vac for job site, auto, home and don't be afraid to use on your computer keyboard and CPU if that is in a dusty environment (with care of course).

Outdoors people will find it handy with the battery(s) for quick tent clean up or as a fireplace bellows without passing out blowing.

If you do not need the versatility and expense of corded/cordless, it is not for you. After all, it was designed just for that versatility and the price is not unfair, considering.

If you do not already have Dewalt batteries, the price will be more in order to accomodate the battery power but if you need/want the cordless feature, and a small, cordless, wet/dry, vac/blower for small jobs this thing is great. If you need more power you will have to buy something bigger or less versatility.

Dewalt could have thrown in a shoulder strap. (Had to find something bad)...

...Oh yeah, wife thought I was nuts for paying a hundred bucks for this, until she used it. She loves it and after remindinding her of her intial response, I finally, did get an apology out of her...That does carry some weight too...It reduces the pain of bla, bla, bla.

She read my review and laughed about my posting her thoughts with her just saying...OK OK...
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on April 10, 2004
I've owned this for about 2 months now and actually have used it a lot more than I thought that I would. For its size, it has good vacuum power. In fact the power is the same whether you are on the cord or the battery. Some have complained that you only get :10 minutes of use. Well, that's a lot of use. You are not supposed to vacuum the house. Typically I have it on for about 30 seconds to a minute. I think that I am getting more than 10 minutes of use by the way. It's great for cleaning up small messes and I think that it has amazing suck power.
Things that I would like to see improved:
1. Add a battery charger
2. The cord should be about 3 feet longer
3. The price is a little steep, but no one else is making this thing and they have to pay for all those NASCAR's.
All in all it's a great little tool especially if you are a handy man and want to leave your clients house clean.
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on June 10, 2004
I bought the DC500 vacuum a few months ago to keep in my truck. Before that, I always had a little 120v 2-gallon wet/dry shop-vac in my truck for small cleanup jobs on service calls. I was keen on the idea of having a decent small cordless wet/dry vac that can run off my Dewalt 18v batteries. Mainly because it seems that when working on smaller jobs, I always end up making little messes that are scattered all around a finished building wherever I have been drilling or cutting, sometimes in remote areas where there is no electrical outlet to be had. This little vac makes it much easier to clean up as I go instead of leaving it until the work is finished and then going back with a dustpan and brush or extension cord and my old 2-gallon shop-vac.
The suction is quite good and the DC500 also has a blower function for getting fine dust out of tight spots and crevices. It uses a single pleated filter for both wet and dry use. Dewalt says the 1-1/4-inch hose is five-feet in length, but the hose actually stretches to almost seven-feet.
I used it to clear a clogged laundry sink and it does pick up water quickly, but of course, since it is only a 2-gallon tank, it fills up fast. A fresh, fully charged 18V XR-Plus battery will last for around ten to fifteen minutes of continuous use. Since I usually only use it for a couple of minutes at a time, I get can get by for quite a while with just one battery but, if needed for extended use I can always go the traditional route an plug it into a 120v outlet with an extension cord. The DC500 doesn't come with a brush attachment, which I use often, so I bought a Shop-Vac 1-1/4 inch right angle brush for about four dollars and just leave it on the hose. That way I can carry all three attachments with the vac for any type of cleanup that comes along.
This little vac gets banged around pretty good in the back of my truck and other than the attachments sometimes falling out of their holders, it seems to be very rugged and takes the rough handling in stride. Overall, I have been quite pleased with this little vac and would recommend the DC500 as an accessory to anyone who already owns other Dewalt cordless tools and battery packs.
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on November 29, 2004
After reading the reviews on Amazon, I got the impression this was a decent, yet imperfet product. After trying it out for myself, I concluded those Amazon reviewers were dead on!

It's a great idea. You use this little vac to clean up after cutting holes in walls, drilling holes or light sawing or sanding. Why drag out the huge shop vac? Seemed like a godsend.

However, the execution is only 75% there. The cord is only 4 ft. (would it kill them to add 2 more feet?) So you have to bring an extension cord. The hose is high quality, but fits rather loosely in the vaccuum body as others have noted and could pop off easily. Suction using AC is decent-- does the job-- but gosh darn it, could have been a little better. Seems like my filterstream dustbuster (also cordless) has better suction. My miele vaccuum definitely has better suction, and compared to a real shop vac-- well, there is no comparison.

I have not tried it with a battery, but I don't know if I want to invest more $s into this. This is my first Dewalt product... I usually only buy Makita tools. Maybe they will come out with one of these...
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VINE VOICEon February 7, 2005
I have one of these units at work. It gets used on a daily basis cleaning computer shelves, cabinets, and keyboards. Let me state that it is perfect for that type of application. It holds more debris than your typical cordless handheld vacuum. The suction power is also more powerful. This unit has dual power source capability. Meaning, you can use the attached power cord to run it off of AC power, or you can insert a DeWalt power tool battery to run it as a cordless vacuum cleaner.

This unit would be a very nice addition to your DeWalt cordless tool collection. It is a perfect tool for light clean up jobs around your home or work place. However, like the previous reviews have stated, "this is not a replacement for your heavy duty shop vacuum". The motor is simply too small for heavy duty work. Anyway, that is not its intended purpose. Removing water out of a flooded bathroom is probably too much to ask from this vaccum. However, it will do nicely for cleaning your car's carpet and upholstery.

This vacuum uses the same battery as the DeWalt heavy duty cordless drills. It will use a 12, 14.4, or 18 volt. Naturally, the bigger the battery, the more run time you can expect. At work, I have access to an unlimited number of 18 volt XRP batteries. Our maintenance shop has dozens of them constantly charging at any given time. I do not have to worry about running out of battery power. I can expect at least 15 minutes of continuous usage out of an 18 volt XRP battery. That is more than plenty for my light usage. The ability to use AC power is always there. That is the advantage of the dual power source capability. The one feature that is lacking in this area is that the unit does not recharge the attached battery even when the power cord is plugged. To recharge the battery, you must use a DeWalt charger.

Batteries and chargers are not included. This vacuum would be more beneficial to those who already own a set of DeWalt batteries and a battery charger. DeWalt batteries are expensive. But, if you already own a DeWalt drill, then it would be relatively inexpensive to add this drill to your collection.

I highly recommend this DeWalt cordless vacuum cleaner. It is another brilliant and innovative product from the folks at DeWalt. At this time, I know of no other similar product.
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on March 2, 2005
Handy little vac for impromptu small pick-up chores. I keep it in a cubby near the kitchen for quick crumb and dust pickup, and nailing those pesky red beetles that accumulate in the ceiling corners. The wand, brush, etc from my Hoover up-right all seem to fit well on the DC500 hose. I bought an extra filter but it was a waste of $$, as the filter cleans easily with a tap, or blow it off with compressed air. Best tool I ever have had for drawers, closet corners, cabinets, all those little clean up chores that wipeing and dusting don't do the job. Also handy for electronic equipment. Consider it as a Dust Buster on steroids. ShopVac it aint!
UPDATE: The on/off rocker switch failed in Fall 2007. I was able to pry it out of the case using a razor knife. I squirted some WD40 into it, and it seems to be working. Have contacted DeWalt about a new switch. The WEB site was no help, but a Human at the 800 was able to provide a part number. In process of getting a new switch.
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on August 13, 2005
Have used this itme quite a few times since it arrived. Love it. Easy to carry, to the job has plenty of suction both pluged in or on battery. It's not a replacement for your big vac, but for small quick clean ups it suits the job. Cutting plaster walls and sheetrock can be messy. This little vac. is up to the job of keeping dirt and dust down. Don't expect hours of run time on batteries, but if you have several charged up you can clean for a while. Great for the car, and getting water out of a clogged sink (this is when the battery came in handy, no threat getting a 115v zap.)

The Dewalt DC500 is a great addition to your portable tools. I goes where you go.
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on October 16, 2003
This is a great vac, Less than 5 minutes out of the box i swept out my SUV, Removed the battery and put it back in my 18 volt trim saw and still had power to cut some plywood. on a fresh battery you get a good 10 minutes of excellent cleaning, better than any other vac of this size i have ever seen. Leave it to Dewalt to keep on coming out with such great products. After my wife used it the first time she said to buy another so she doesn't have to hunt for mine, sounds good to me since i won't be hunting for it either.
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on September 10, 2005
Good points:

Battery and cord

Well built

Powerful for size


Easy to empty and clean

Bad points:

Narrow hose clogs with large items

Limited battery life

Overall I would recommend.


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