Dental Vacuum Pumps: Wet vs. Dry | Atlas Resell Management

You are here

Dental Vacuum Pumps: Wet vs. Dry

Dental Vacuum Pumps: Wet vs. Dry

In dentistry, what’s the difference between a wet vacuum pump and a dry vacuum pump?

A “wet” vacuum pump vs. a “dry” vacuum pump can sometimes refer to whether the pump system uses oil to operate.

But for this discussion, and often for dentistry specifically, “wet” or “dry” refers to how each system creates vacuum pressure.

Check out the following infographic for a breakdown of these 2 types of vac pump systems.


Dental Vacuum Pumps: Wet vs. Dry


Source of Vacuum Pressure

Wet vacs, or wet-ring vacuum pumps, use water to create vacuum pressure. They require an average of 360 gallons of water per day. Minerals and other residue from city water can wear down the vacuum pump over time and shorten its lifespan.

Dry vacuum pumps create vacuum pressure by pumping air out of the vacuum chamber. They use rotary vanes, turbines, or air to create suction power. As a result, they require significantly less water than wet vacuum pumps.

Current Trends

Most newer dental vacuum pumps are dry vacs and provide many benefits over older models.

However, you can still find reliable wet vacs on the pre-owned market. We recommend the VacStar series.

Want to Learn More?

Get more of your dental vacuum pump questions answered in our Dental Vacuum Pump FAQ.

Learn 5 facts about Hg and vacuum pump strength in our recent blog post.

Sources/Additional Reading: