Can You Vacuum Glass? (Clear The Mess Safely)


It is in the middle of your keg party. Several wine glasses slide off your serving tray amid guests’ excitement, cheers, and roars. The loud crash is evident that you lost all your glasses. In a millisecond, the entire lounge has shards flying in every direction. This is the least of anyone’s expectations but is common in most gatherings. Though wine glasses aren’t cheap, that’s not your worry for now. Can you vacuum glass to clear this mess?  

You can vacuum glass shards with the right vacuum machine. Use a handheld vacuum or wet/dry shop vacuum machine to clean glass pieces without errors. If you use a vacuum with a flexible hose, it will get ruined. There are other ways to clean broken glass from your floor, carpet, sink, or upholstery. Keep learning!

How To Clean Broken Glass

Broken glass is a safety hazard to everyone in your house. So, any time an accident happens, you must calculate your next move. You must ask everyone to leave the room, including children and pets. 

Once all are safe, grab your gloves and slide in your rubber boots. Also, wear goggles on your eyes. You will need a soft broom and a pan to sweep and collect the mess. Sweep your room towards a free space at the center. That allows you to collect large pieces of glass. 

This step lets you decide whether to use a handheld vacuum/dustbuster or a wet/dry shop vac. Don’t give up if you do not have any of this vacuum! I will tell you another safe way to clear broken glass from your room, sink, or carpet, including sweeping with a soft broom. Let’s have a look at these methods.

Vacuuming Cleaning Broken Glass

A handheld vacuum or a shop vac is a powerful suction cleaner that most homeowners use to clean pet hair and mites from upholstery. These vacuums are robust and have adjustable suction power. So, they can suck shards without leaving any on your surfaces or getting damaged. 

Unlike the flex hose vacuum, the vacs are ideal and safe for cleaning broken glass pieces. The machines have HEPA filtration, suitable for sucking tiny pieces of glass and other objects. Also, their rubberized nozzle provides a better grip and helps prevent the glass from scratching or damaging the vacuum’s attachments.

Steps For Vacuuming Broken Glass Pieces

  1. Safety first! So, wear your safety gear, including gloves, rubber boots, and gloves to prevent pricks and flying shards from hurting.
  2. Sweep the larger glass pieces together. Ensure that you reach all the corners of the room.
  3. Collect the shards with a dustpan. 
  4. Please place them in a carrier bag, seal them well, and set them aside. When you finish vacuuming, you will combine the water, label, and dispose depending on your country’s disposal laws for hazardous waste.
  5. Grab the vacuum and line it with an appropriate disposable bag.
  6. Cover the vac’s discharge port. You can attach a fine mesh or cloth over it to prevent glass particles from frying out during vacuuming.
  7. Set the vacuum machine on low power. 
  8. Vacuum the entire room on the low and shift to the highest setting. Also, vacuum the entire room.
  9. Ensure that you have suctioned all the glass pieces by lighting the room bright to get hold of all of the glass pieces.
  10. Remove the bag with the waste and place it in a cardboard box. 
  11. Grab the waste bag you set aside in Step 3 and place it in the cardboard box.  
  12. Label the “Hazardous Waste” box and dispose of it in the trash bin for collection.

2. Cleaning Broken Glass With A Broom, Lint Roller, And Wet Paper Towels

With the mess in your room, you will have to act swiftly. If you do not have the right vac to suction the glass shards from your floor, sweep it. But you must follow some steps to ensure your home is free from broken glasses. You will need a soft broom, a dirt pan, and a lint roller. If you do not have a lint roller, some serviettes or paper towels can help you to collect the tiniest pieces of glass.

  1. Brighten your room with an LED spotlight.
  2. Sweep the glass towards the middle of the room and collect them.
  3. Wrap them in a thick trash bag and place them in cardboard.
  4. Roll the lint roller around the room to pick up the shards. Alternatively, paper towels/serviettes can collect the pieces. Wet the towels sparingly and press them on the floor to collect the finest pieces of glass. Ensure that they are not dripping wet. An adhesive take can also do a great job. Whatever you choose to clean broken glass, ensure that there are no tiny pieces in hidden areas. 
  5. Drop the dirty towels and adhesives into the trash bag and the cardboard. 
  6. Label the box “Hazardous Waste.”
  7. Dispose of it in the trash bin for collection.
  8. Once you have ensured there are no pieces around, mop your house depending on the type of floor. If it is carpeted, vacuum it clean. 

What if it was all about cleaning glass surfaces with a vacuum? It isn’t a perfect idea. The reason is glass is solid content and does not accumulate dust or debris. So, don’t complicate things. Instead, wipe the surface with a cloth or a glass cleaner.

Dos and don’ts when vacuuming broken glass pieces

When vacuuming broken glass, following specific dos and don’ts is essential to ensure safety and prevent further damage. Here are some important guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Wear protective gear, including sturdy gloves and safety goggles, to protect your hands and eyes against potential injuries caused by sharp glass fragments.
  • First, pick up the large debris before vacuuming and place them directly into a designated sturdy container or bag for glass disposal.
  • Use a wet/dry or handheld vacuum, not the flexi hose vacuum. These two vacuums have stronger suction power and sturdier components for small shards.
  • Use an appropriate attachment: for the task. A special rubber strip or brush nozzle can help capture small glass fragments more effectively.
  • Vacuum slowly in the affected room and repeat several times.
  • Do not press down on the glass fragments, as this can increase the risk of breakage.
  • Empty the vac safely and empty the canister into a labeled container for proper disposal.  
  • Don’t vacuum sharp and protruding shards.
  • Do not touch the glass fragments with bare hands.  

Parting Shot

Can you vacuum glass? Yes, you can with the right vacuum machine. You need a vacuum with stronger suction power and sturdy components. The wet/dry vac fits in this category. Remember to vacuum glass cautiously and ensure you reach all the hidden areas. If the accident happens, prioritize a manual cleanup method, including sweeping and using a lint roller to remove the shards. Contact us if you are uncertain about the safest way to vacuuming broken glass. And no, you cannot vacuum a glass surface as it doesn’t absorb dust. Consider wiping the surface with a lint cloth or seek assistance from a professional cleaning center. Happy vacuuming!

By Shawn Roberts

Shawn Roberts is a renown culinary enthusiast with a deep love for food and cooking. He has decades of experience in the kitchen. In his career, Shawn Roberts shares his expertise, recipes, and insights to inspire and guide you on your own culinary journey. Together with his team of kitchen décor experts, you can make your cooking space a little heaven. Get ready to explore a world of flavors and creativity with Shawn Roberts