San Jose set an MLS record with 43 shots, had 16 corner kicks and enjoyed possession for 74.9 percent of the time. The New York/New Jersey MetroStars held the former mark of 38 shots on May 3, 1998.
The Earthquakes (12-10-5, 41 points) snapped a four-game winless stretch (0-3-1) with the strong showing. San Jose put 19 shots on target.
Vancouver goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau broke the MLS record with 16 saves. Tony Meola had 15 in a 1997 match for the MetroStars.
Defender Jakob Nerwinski scored for the Whitecaps (6-13-9, 27 points). Vancouver took just five shots with two on target.
Despite the offensive display, the Earthquakes didn't have a cushion until Rios scored in the 73rd minute to make it 3-1.
Midfielder Magnus Eriksson passed the ball back to his left to Rios, and the forward received the ball just outside the box. He sent a blistering right-footed blast that hit the low corner of the left post, and the ball caromed into the goal.
Defender Florian Jungwirth missed an opportunity to add to the margin in the 85th minute when his rocket right-footed direct kick slammed into the crossbar.
San Jose had edges of 25-3 in shots -- 12 were on target -- and 11-0 in corner kicks while dominating the first half. The 25 shots represent an MLS record for a half, but the Earthquakes led just 2-1.
Vancouver struck in the sixth minute when Nerwinski dribbled from the right side to the center and sent a left-footed shot into the left corner of the net.
The Earthquakes equalized in the following minute when Wondolowski sent a quick pass to Judson, and the midfielder delivered a close-range right-footed shot inside the far post to make it 1-1.
San Jose moved ahead on a corner kick in the 34th minute. Midfielder Cristian Espinoza booted the ball toward the pile of people in front of the net, and Jungwirth headed the ball toward Wondolowski. The striker was unmarked at the left post and easily headed the ball into the net to extend his MLS goals record to 151.