Category Archive: Dust Collection Design

Baghouse vs Cyclone Dust Collector

Choosing the Right Dust Collection System

There are two common approaches for using cyclone dust collectors, as a stand-alone system or as a pre-filtration unit paired with a larger dust collector. This article includes information on:

Understanding these variables can help you identify whether a standalone cyclone system is best for your application or if you need to pair your cyclone with a larger dust collection system.

US Air Filtration Baghouse Dust Collection System

How Does a Cyclone Dust Collector Work?

Cyclone dust collectors are small-scale stand-alone units that work to remove large dust particulates from the air using centrifugal force. The filtration process starts with dirty air being drawn into the cyclone dust collection system at a high speed. This high-speed motion works as a controlled “hurricane” inside of the cyclone. The “hurricane” motion allows larger particles to be pushed out and up against the cyclone walls. Then once the dirty air hits the walls of a cyclone, momentum slows down, which is enough to permit larger particles to drop out of the airstream and into a hopper beneath.

Dust Characteristics, Capacity, CFM, and Cyclone Dust Collectors

Understanding your Dust characteristics is the first step to understanding whether you need a baghouse, cyclone or both? 

Cyclone dust collectors are ideal for applications dealing with large, coarse dust particulate. If your application contains a mixture of large and small dust particulate, you’ll likely need tofilter larger dust particulate out first with a cyclone and then direct the remaining gas stream to a larger baghouse that uses filters to handle finer particulate. This two-step filtration process helps prevent large particulate (e.g., wood chips) from creating unnecessary wear and tear on baghouse filters.

Beyond dust characteristics, dust loading rates and CFM are factors when considering which dust collection system is best for a specific application. Because cyclone dust collectors are small-scale units, their capacity to handle dust particulate is finite. General dust loading rates can be between a 5-to-30-gallon drum. In terms of CFM, most cyclones operate anywhere around 1000 CFM or below.

Baghouse Dust Collector for an Industrial factory

Common Applications for Cyclone Dust Collectors

Applications for Stand-Alone Cyclones:

  • Woodworking applications with only large dust particulate 
  • Agricultural applications with only large dust particulate

Applications for a Baghouse or Baghouse and Cyclone System:

  • Woodworking (all)
  • Agricultural (all)
  • Mining & Minerals
  • Recycling
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Paper Products
  • Chemicals
  • Rubber Plants
  • Food Manufacturing
  • Bulk Powder
  • Industrial Equipment and Machinery
  • And More!

Food on a conveyor belt at a food manufacturing plant

Advantages and Disadvantages of a Cyclone Dust Collector

Cyclone dust collectors  are designed as a simple steel structure with no moving parts or filters. Because of this simplicity, the main advantages and disadvantages are:

Advantages of a Cyclone:

  • Low up-front investment. There are a wide variety of models, but generally you can find a cyclone dust collection system ranges anywhere from $500-$3000.
  • Long-term cost savings on maintenance and repair
  • Paired with a larger baghouse, can increase the efficiency and life of filter bags or cartridges

Disadvantages of a Cyclone: 

  • Low dust loading rates
  • Limited CFM capabilities
  • Low efficiency at capturing fine particulate
  • Unable to process sticky materials 
  • Application use is limited

Benefits of a Cyclone with a Baghouse Dust Collection System

In specific cases, an engineer may determine that your plant can benefit from pairing a cyclone with a larger dust collection system. Typically, processes that have a mix of large and small particulate are the ideal candidates for this type of setup. 

A cyclone could be implemented as a pre-filtration system to eliminate any large, coarse particles that could damage a dust collector’s filter bags or cartridges further downstream. The result is an increase in the performance of a dust collection system and the service life of the baghouse filters. In certain cases, cyclones can also help to reduce dust loading into a baghouse with a high inlet entry. This method reduces internal velocities (e.g., can velocity) resulting in improved efficiency and increased filter life.

To determine whether your application would benefit from a combination cyclone and larger dust collection system, some questions you may be asked include:

Questions to Consider:

  • Do you have a dust analysis or DHA (dust hazard analysis)?
  • What’s the size of your particulate? Is it big? Small? Mixed?
  • How much dust are you filtering out in a given work shift?
  • Could your dust collection design incorporate an end inlet as an alternative? While there is no cyclonic action with an end inlet, the attributes are similar. An end inlet helps bring in the dust high, but as it hits a baffle, it redirects the air directly downward. In this scenario, heavy particulate hits the baffle, then slows down and drops out. Then rest of the air is kicked down below the bag, allowing your system to still have can velocity. The disadvantage to an end inlet is these types of baghouses tend to be considerably larger because there must be space for air to hit the baffle.

Even in similar industries, plants will have different requirements and variables from one another that will determine the right dust collection solution. To get beyond the basics, we recommend speaking to an engineer who can help with your specific application and needs.

Conclusion

To summarize, cyclones are limited in their capabilities. In certain conditions you could add a cyclone to be helpful and reduce dust loading on larger systems, but cyclones alone are not typically adequate for most industrial applications. At U.S. Air Filtration our engineers can help determine if the dust collection system you’re looking for would benefit from adding a cyclone. Our goal is to do what we can do to help save you costs, while also ensuring we are designing a solution that will perform long term.

High Inlet versus Low Inlet Baghouse Design

A critical part of the dust collection design process is where to position your baghouse inlet. The purpose of the baghouse inlet is to draw dirty, dust laden air into the system so the air can be filtered.  In this article, we will focus on the design factors that help determine a system’s inlet placement (high versus low), can velocity, and the advantages of a high inlet versus a low inlet baghouse.

Dust Collection System Design Factors

When designing a dust collection system, we consider your dust properties and the characteristics of your work environment carefully to identify the best solution.  Below are the five most critical dust collection design elements.

Dust Collection Design Factors

During the design process, we consider two primary characteristics that influence baghouse inlet placement:

  • The amount of dust you are bringing into the collector
  • The heaviness of the dust

When you have a large amount of dust and that dust is heavy, a dust collection system may benefit more from a low inlet design. When heavy dust enters the unit at the bottom of the system, the natural force of gravity will pull the dust down. Conversely when you have light to medium dust loading and very light dust, a dust collection with a high inlet design would typically be best.

However, even in similar environments the dust loads, work environment, and space can vary drastically. Our best recommendation is to work closely with your U.S. Air Filtration equipment specialist. Understanding all the details and nuances to your specific project will allow us to make the best design recommendations.

Dust Collection Assembly

Can Velocity and Dust Collection Design

Can velocity is the speed at which air moves from low in the baghouse to high. The higher the can velocity, the faster air moves up in the system.  We calculate can velocity based on your CFM, the size of the collector, and your space restrictions.

During the design process, your equipment specialist can help determine if there will be a high enough can velocity that would require a high inlet. A high inlet will eliminate or counter can velocity. This way, dust can drop or if the dust is heavy enough, the dust will overcome upward air movement and drop out without issue.

CFM, space restrictions, and dust loads are all straightforward questions. But depending on the answers provided there can be different results. Here are two different scenarios that could occur during the design process that require two different inlets.

Baghouse Inlet Scenario 1:

  • No design preference for the inlet.
  • No space issues
  • In this case, it’s possible for a customer to have a system that’s designed to hold 700 filter bags, 8’ in length, with a low inlet. This scenario is possible with just about any type of dust. All that is needed to drive that air to cloth ratio down as low as possible, is to eliminate as much can velocity as you can. As a result, your dust collection system will work as intended with a low inlet design

Baghouse Inlet Scenario 2:

  • No design preference for the inlet.
  • Yes, there are space constraints.
  • In this example, if there is only a 15’ by 15’ space to install a dust collection system, the system must be taller and require longer filter bags of 12’ to adequately handle the dust load. filter bag. By design, there will be a much higher can velocity even though the same air to cloth ratio is being used. This is because the filter bag is longer, the dust collector is thinner, more vertical rather than wider, and shorter. These factors all increase can velocity. Because the can velocity is higher, a high inlet would be required to allow better dust dropout.

High versus Low Inlet Dust Collector Design Advantages

When considering a high versus low inlet for your dust collection system, there are certain design advantages that are considered based on dust type and application. There are additional costs for a high inlet baghouse. If your project will allow for a low inlet design, then that’s the route we recommend. Our goal is to help you avoid spending more money than necessary both upfront and in long term maintenance costs.

However, in certain situations it may be worth investing in a high inlet.  These situations include:

  • When you are worried about the dust not dropping out of the airstream
  • If you’re concerned the bags won’t clean properly
  • If you are afraid you are going to lose suction over time

In these cases, it may be worth spending the extra money to design a dust collection system with a high inlet, to avoid these issues. You will also have the added benefit of avoiding additional maintenance problems down the road.

Baghouse Design

Additional Baghouse Inlet Options

What if your application has light dust, but high dust loading? An additional option in this case would be an end inlet. This helps bring in the dust in high, but as it hits a baffle, it redirects the air directly downward. In this scenario, heavy part particulate hits the baffle, then slow down, and drop out. Then it kicks the rest of the air down below the bag, so you still have can velocity. However, we reduce the amount of dust in the airstream so much that can velocity is not as much of a concern as if it was just a standard low inlet baghouse. The disadvantage to an end inlet is those baghouses tend to be considerably larger because you must have space for that air to hit the baffle.

The Design Process with U.S. Air Filtration

Baghouse Design

At U.S. Air Filtration, our V.P. of Engineering, generally recommends a low hopper entry or side entry inlet baghouse with a full blast height plate/drop-out box plenum, if the particulate from the process is highly abrasive and/or has a bulk density of greater than 70 lbs./CF. (I.e., Sand, silica, glass, etc.) If you have questions regarding this exception, please contact U.S. Air Filtration’s engineering department for further explanation.

At U.S. Air Filtration, we understand that a dust collection project may just be one piece of a larger project for you. Our engineers are here to help solve your concerns and design a solution that best fits your application and facility. If you need to speak with an equipment specialist, please feel free to contact us at 888-221-0312 or email [email protected]. If you’re just starting your dust collection project, access our “Dust Collector Purchasing” article for more information on design considerations, airflow, air-to-cloth ratio, and more.

Guide to Calculating Dust Collection CFM

CFM is a measurement of airflow related to air conditioning, heating and ventilation environments. In dust collection applications CFM measures the amount of air per minute that can be moved from a space.

If you’re not familiar with how to calculate dust collection CFM, the process can be intimidating. In this article we will help you understand our approach to calculating CFM requirements for you. Along with the questions you should be asking your dust collection engineering firm to identify the optimal solution for your plant.

Dust Collector Purchasing Guide

Dust Collection CFM Questions to Consider

  • Where is your dust being created?
  • Are you using taps or hoods at the points of dust creation?
  • What type of dust are you working with?
  • What are your dust characteristics?

One of the first questions we ask is, “Where is your dust being created?” This allows us to understand where your pick-up points are, and how many of those need to factor in when calculating your CFM.

Methods of Dust Collection

How Much Does a Dust Collector Cost

Once we understand where the dust is being created, then the next question becomes, “What’s the best way to collect the dust at that dust creation point?” Three common methods are:

  1. Tap
  2. Hood
  3. Articulating Arm

Many facilities include source taps at every machine. If there are no taps, then a hood or a smaller pickup point can be added. For example, a hood can be added above a table to capture dust if there is a need to constantly maneuver around the table.

If there is movement happening around the machine in different ways (e.g., leaning over a machine) then there may be a need for an articulating arm. An articulating arm allows a way for the hood or pick up duct to be as close as possible to the actual creation of the dust. As U.S. Air Filtration helps you calculate the right CFM, we will work together with you to gather these details machine by machine.

What’s Needed to Calculate CFM?

You may not know the CFM you need, but here are the things you can provide that will allow us to help solve that for you.

  • How close can we get to the machine?
    • For example, if the machine has a six-inch tap, then we would know that would require a six-inch duct. Generally, when the machine is designed, your pickup points are also designed with the intention to efficiently capture dust.
  • Blueprint of your facility or a roughly drawn layout
    • This helps us understand the distances between the machines, walls, and where the dust collection system will be placed.
  • Photos of your machines. This helps us identify if you are using taps or hoods.
    •  Tap
      • If there are no taps, how are people using the machine?
      • Is the machine stationary?
      • Does someone need access 360 degrees around the machine?
    •  Hood
      • If there are no hoods, what is the size of the machine or table that’s creating dust? This helps us properly size a hood and with those dimensions we can look at velocity at the hood.

Then, depending on the weight of the dust, we get a better understanding of the specific velocity needed to move the dust and the duct size that’s required. These two factors together can help us get to the right CFM for your dust collection project.

Dust Collection Source Capture versus Room Capture

Dust Collection CFM

In the case of a grinding application, you may do all your grinding in one room and want to ventilate the entire room itself.

While the initial calculations and process to ventilate one room may seem easier, it’s not necessarily the best in terms of cost. Our recommendation is to get as close as you can get to the source of the dust, which allows you to move less air. This can mean a smaller system, which can lower the price tag of your project while also capturing dust more efficiently.

For an everyday example, let’s say you have dust all over your kitchen floor and you don’t want to vacuum every square inch of it. Then your option would be to try and suck the dust up through a hood. That requires you to pull a large amount of air very quickly, which in turn requires much greater force from the fan to capture the dust. In contrast to that, if you have a vacuum and a hose, then you can pick up everything closely using a very small amount of air and suction requirements.

While it may be tempting to “just ventilate the room”, keep in mind that every CFM comes with a price tag. Moving 100,000 CFM versus 10,000 CFM is going to be more costly. The details that go into calculating your CFM may be cumbersome at first, but it will save you from spending a considerable sum of money in the long run.

Negative Impacts of Miscalculating CFM

The Dangers of an Undersized Dust Collector

When designing a dust collection system, it’s best to err on the high side of CFM rather than the lower side. It’s very difficult is to make a dust collection system larger once it’s in place. It’s much easier, if necessary, to damper the fan down or add a smaller fan.

Correcting for a larger than needed dust collection system involves adding more filter media. Upfront costs are slightly higher, but your system will work well, and you’ll be able to remove dust out of the way as you intended. The reverse isn’t true. If your system is too small, it’s very difficult to add filter media. Getting the dust out of your facility will always be an uphill battle. So, to reiterate when in doubt error on the high side.

  • If you underestimate CFM, you won’t capture the dust that you need to capture.
  • The system will not work the way it was designed. Therefore, you will spend a large sum of money on maintenance expenses due to increased wear and tear..
  • If you overestimate CFM, the dust collection system will work just fine, but long term you will pay 20%-30% more for a system.

Advantages of Working with USAF

U.S. Air Filtration Dust Collection Engineering

One of the advantages of working with U.S. Air Filtration is that we have a team of engineers with over 40 years dust collection experience who can gather the details you provide and calculate the numbers to get you to the right CFM.

Calculating CFM and designing a system is a complex engineering process.  We do all the leg work for you, so you don’t have to.

If you would like to speak to an engineer about your specific project, contact us at 888-221-0312 or email [email protected]

Dust Collector Purchasing Guide

Download the free PDF version of this Dust Collector Purchasing Guide here.

Our dust collector purchasing guide will help you identify the right dust collection system that will perform safely, efficiently, and reliably for many years to come. Identifying the right components and needs for your next dust collector can be an overwhelming process. Factors to consider include:

5 Things to Consider When Purchasing a Dust Collector

  1. Dust Properties – Learn the dust properties you need to be aware of to help you find the right filter media and type of dust collector.
  2. Volume – Understand key variables for measuring volume or airflow requirements in your work environment in order to size your collector properly.
  3. Air-to-Cloth Ratio – Learn why air to cloth ratio is important and how to find the right air-to-cloth ratio for your operation.
  4. Dust Collector Styles – Learn about three most common dust collectors, their advantages and disadvantages.
  5. Low Maintenance Design Features – Learn important dust collector design features that will help you save time and money in long term maintenance expenses.

At the end of this dust collector purchasing guide, there are also additional resources that provide more details about combustible dust considerations and on demand cleaning.

Dust Collector Dust Properties

Dust Properties and Your Work Environment

Do you know your dust? Consider your dust properties and characteristics of your work environment carefully to identify the best dust collection solution.

Dust Properties to Consider:

  • Size – What is the size of the dust particles being filtered; fine or large?
  • Density – Is the dust low in density like wood dust or heavy in density like fine steel dust?
  • Chemistry – Will you be filtering any abrasive dust? Corrosive dust?
  • Temperature – Are you operating in a high heat environment? What is the operating or maximum temperature at your facility?
  • Moisture – Is moisture or oil present in the dust?

Knowing your dust properties is the first step to help you determine the type of dust collector that is best suited for your unique application.

Your Work Environment

The next step to finding the right dust collection solution is to consider your space constraints, emissions requirements and temperature of your airstream.

Space Constraints

Dust collectors vary in height, width and depth depending on the application and the amount of dust being captured. Take note of any height or space restrictions in the work environment and take measurements of the space allotted for your collector along with the space available around the collector. Many dust collectors are top load which means you will need to allow space above the collector to replace and service the collector from the top of the unit.

Emissions Requirements

Depending on your application, your dust collector may require a permit with specific emissions requirements. These emissions requirements vary by state and are expressed as an efficiency percentage for cartridge collectors or an emission limit (e.g. lbs/hr or gr/dscf) for baghouses.

Temperature of the Environment

The temperature of the airstream will determine what type of filter media is required and will affect fan size. Temperatures greater than 260 degrees will require special filter media and changes to the dust collector fan. If the unit will be outside in a cold/extreme climate you will need to consider insulating the unit as well.

Dust Collector Volume

Understanding Volume or Airflow Requirements

Calculating Your Airflow

After considering your dust properties, the next step in dust collector purchasing is our airflow or volume requirements. Calculating your airflow correctly is critical to the long term health of your collector so your system will be efficient at capturing dust.

Why is Volume Important?

If the volume of the system is too low, your system will not capture the dust effectively which can impact production and air quality. If the volume of your system is too high, your energy consumption costs will be higher and you may disrupt the process of your application.

How is Volume (Cubic Feet Per Minute) Measured?

Dust collector volume is measured in cubic feet per minute or CFM. CFM is a measurement of airflow especially related to air conditioning, heating and ventilation environments like those requiring dust collection. In dust collector applications CFM measures the amount of air per minute that can be moved from a space.

Variables to Consider

Work environments vary dramatically from one another based on several variables, and even very similar environments can require vastly different volume. To determine the right volume capabilities for your new dust collector, consider some of the following variables carefully.

  • How are you collecting dust?
  • What is the size of the duct being used to collect the dust?
  • Cubic feet of the work environment

Dust Collector Air to Cloth Ratio

Air-to-Cloth-Ratio

Dust collector air-to-cloth ratio is a critical measure to ensure your air filtration system is performing efficiently.

What is Air-to-Cloth Ratio?

Air-to-cloth ratio, also known as air-to-media, is defined as a measurement of the amount of air passing through one square foot of filler media. Generally the lower your air-to-cloth ratio, the more effectively your system removes dust from the work environment. If you are operating at a higher air-to-cloth ratio, one of the common issues you may encounter is a decrease in suction. This is because a large amount of dust laden air is filtered by an insufficient amount of filter media. The dust cake on the bag builds up too quickly; resulting in a decrease in air flow through the filters and suction at pickup points.

How to Select or Calculate Air-to-Cloth Ratio

If you’re sizing a new cartridge collector system and know what type of dust will be filtered and the air volume needed to properly ventilate the area or pickup points. Our Air-to-Cloth Guide below is a good place to start. The guide gives you a general recommendation on the air-to-cloth ratio for several different applications. To find the dust collector suited to your dust and air volume requirements simply:

  1. Divide air volume of system by air-to-cloth ratio to get the total amount of filter area needed into the system.
  2. Divide the total filter area by the filter area per filter to determine how many filters are needed in the dust collector.
  3. Find the dust collector model that best fits your application by number of filters
    and type of dust collector.

To calculate air-to-cloth ratio in your existing system, calculate the volume of air (CFM) and divide that number by the total filter area within your dust collector. For example, a sixteen filter cartridge collector pulling 7,000 CFM would have a 3.65:1 airto-cloth ratio (7000 CFM / 16 filters x 120 ft2 per filter). Or in the case of a baghouse, a hundred filter baghouse pulling 10,000 CFM would have a 6.37:1 air-to-cloth ratio (10,000 CFM / 100 filters x 15.70 ft2 per filter). Environments with a large ventilation area or more pick up points require a higher air volume (CFM) to provide adequate suction which means more filter media to keep a similar air-to-cloth ratio.

Air to Media Chart

Why is selecting the right Air-to-Cloth ratio important?

  • Extends filter life
  • Minimizes your operating costs
  • Meets air quality goals and requirements
  • Allows your dust collection system to perform at peak efficiency

What are the negative effects of improper Air-to-Cloth ratio?

  • Poor venting which causes damage to equipment
  • High pressure drops in differential pressure
  • Impacts your air velocity
  • Excessive use of compressed air

Dangers of an Undersized Dust Collector

Choosing a collector that is too small can cost you in long term maintenance costs. Some of the biggest problems we see people run into with an inappropriately sized dust collector are:

  • Consistently clogged filters (reduced filter life)
  • Increased downtime
  • Higher maintenance and energy costs
  • Decreased efficiency
  • Increased compressed air consumption

To avoid the dangers of an undersized dust collector consider both CFM and air-to-cloth ratio carefully when designing your new unit.

Baghouse Styles

Dust Collector Styles

Baghouse Styles

Baghouses are ideally suited for large volume applications with airflow exceeding 1,000 CFM or when high temperature applications are above 375 degrees. In these environments, a baghouse will handle and most efficiently filter your dust laden air. There are several types or styles of baghouses available. Once you understand your dust properties, volume, and air-to-cloth ratio, you can determine the right baghouse style for your facility. Here is a summary of the pros and cons of the three most common baghouse styles: pulse jet baghouse, reverse air, or shaker style.

Pulse Jet Baghouse

ProsCons
Bags cleaned continuously while unit is in operationRequires compressed air
Easy to maintain, low maintenance costNot ideal for high moisture applications (+20%)
Flexible Sizing and ConfigurationRequires filter cages

Reverse Air Baghouse

ProsCons
Low maintenanceNeeds to be cleaned often
Gentle cleaning which allows for longer bag lifeResidual dust build up is hard to remove
Units are typically compartmentalized into sections which allows them to be maintained without shutting down the entire baghouseFilter bags are expensive compared to Pulse Jet bags
Bags are typically custom made and not available in stock for quick shipment

Shaker Baghouse

ProsCons
Very simple to operateLimited filter media options
Low initial investment costNot space efficient (takes up a large area)
Filters cleaned via shaker mechanismNot suited for high dust loads
Bags are typically custom made and not available in stock for quick shipment

What’s the Right Type of Pulse Jet Dust Collector?

The three most common pulse jet dust collection systems are baghouses, cartridge collectors, and bin vents. Below is an overview of each type of pulse jet system and common applications for each:

Baghouses

Baghouses are typically the largest of the three types of dust collectors. They are well suited for large volume and high temperature applications. Baghouses are perform well for applications with high dust loads of more one 55 gallon a drum per day. The most common applications that use baghouses include:

  • Wood
  • Mining
  • Asphalt
  • Foundries
  • Cement

Cartridge Collector

Cartridge Dust Collectors are compact and very modular in design. These are best suited for applications with the following characteristics:

  • Moderate or low dust (collecting less than one 55 gallon drum per day)
  • High efficiency filtration requirements
  • Space restraints or small footprint requirements
  • Possibility of future plant expansion

The most common applications for cartridge collectors include:

  • Welding
  • Grinding
  • Laser/Plasma Cutting
  • Bulk Powder Processing

Listed here is a baghouse and cartridge collector comparison chart to help you determine which option may be best suited for your application.

Baghouse and Cartridge Collector Comparison Chart

FeatureBaghouseCartridge Collector
Airflow Range (in CFM)1,000+ CFM500+ CFM
Dust Loading Per DayMore than 55 gallon drumLess than 55 gallon drum
TemperatureUp to 500°FUp to 180° F
Design Features20-30 feet tall Pulse jet cleaning Reverse airflow cleaning (part that removes larger particles)7-12 feet tall More compact for applications where space is limited Higher efficiencies
Common ApplicationsWood · Metalworking · Mining · Foundries · Tile · Drywall · Fiberboard ManufacturingWelding · Plasma Cutting · Grinding · Bulk Powder Processing · Paint Booths
Type of Filter MediaWoven or feltPleated, non-woven

Bin Vent

Bin vents are usually used in applications where you are moving product from one location to another. Like a cartridge collector, bin vents are also compact, and designed for easy change-outs. They are designed to efficiently vent silos and tanks while minimizing product loss. Bin vents are frequently used in the following applications:

  • Cement
  • Agriculture
  • Tank Loading
  • Conveyor Belt

Dust Collection Design Features

Low Maintenance Design Features

To avoid the hassle of excessive and costly change-outs and maintenance consider important dust collector design features that will help you lower your long term maintenance and energy costs.

Listed below are some of the easy maintenance design features your dust collector should include.

Dust Collector Design Features for Easy Maintenance

  • On-demand cleaning for reliable performance and
    reduced wear and tear
  • Modular design with low profile options for easy
    expansion and access
  • Filter change-outs performed outside or clean air side of
    the collector
  • No special tools or equipment required to perform
    change-outs
  • Quick removal access filter covers
  • Change-outs performed in 30 minutes or less
  • Standard filter sizes to ensure product availability and competitive prices
  • Multiple filter options for a variety of applications

Dust Collector Additional Resources

Additional Resources for Dust Collector Purchasing

How to Prevent a Dust Collector Explosion

If you are dealing with combustible dust, you’ll need to implement a preventive maintenance plan, which will help you avoid a serious dust collector emergency.

What is combustible dust?

Combustible dust can be defined as any fine material that has the ability to catch fire and explode when it’s mixed with the proper concentration of air.

When can combustible dust create an explosion?

When the right conditions are in place, combustible dust can become hazardous and create an
explosion. Dust can collect on multiple surfaces in a facility (e.g. ducts, crevices, dust collectors, equipment, etc.), and once this buildup of dust mixes with the right conditions, it only takes a small ignition source to create a significant explosion. There are even scenarios in which combustible dust can self-ignite. This usually results from static that builds up as the particulates rub against one another.

Who does it affect?

Combustible dust effects a wide variety of industries such agriculture, metalworking, mining, chemicals, plastics, pharmaceuticals, etc. Industries that are susceptible to combustible dust are regulated by OSHA standards and NFPA guidelines.

How can I prevent a dust collector fire?

Now that you know what conditions required for combustible dust, when it can happen, and who it effects, how do you limit or prevent a serious explosion from happening? Your best plan of action is going to include steps that are proactive instead of reactive. Here are the proactive steps you can take:

  • OSHA Standards: Ensure you are meeting OSHA’s set of standards regarding
    combustible dust. Industries that are susceptible to combustible dust are regulated
    by OSHA standards when you implement OSHA’s set of standards, you are
    creating a safe working environment, avoiding property and economic loss from an
    explosion, and avoiding regulatory fines.
  • NFPA Guidelines: Make sure you are meeting codes outlined by the NFPA
    (National Fire Protection Agency). The NFPA publishes a list of guidelines that will
    help you minimize injury or death from combustible dust. The following codes are
    related to the most combustible types of dust (e.g. sugar, wood, fine aluminum):

    • 664, Standard for the Prevention of Fires and Explosions in Wood Processing and
      Woodworking Facilities
    • 484, Standard for Combustible Metals
    • 61, Standard for the Prevention of Fires and Dust Explosions in Agricultural and
      Food Processing Facilities
  • Preventative Maintenance Plan: Properly maintain your facility and dust collector
    to help prevent a buildup of dust. Clean up any excess dust build up on your dust
    collector, other equipment, vents, and filters.
  • Explosion Vents: Installing an explosion vent on your dust collector is one strategy
    that can minimize damage to your equipment and harm to employees should an
    explosion happen. The purpose is to relieve pressure in the dust collector caused
    by an explosion. Once the activation pressure is exceeded the vent(s) open safely
    relieving pressure.
  • Explosion Latches: Latches operate under the same concept as explosion vents.
    Latches provide venting in the event of an internal explosion.

Dust Collector Purchasing Summary

Selecting and pricing out a dust collection system involves careful consideration of each of the variables outlined above. Proper attention to these items is critical to ensuring your dust collector performs efficiently for many years to come and creates a clean, safe work environment for plant operators. Each dust collection application is unique, and it is possible that applications with very similar product characteristics or volume requirements may require a system that is vastly different due to the number of variables to consider. To help you engineer and select the correct system for your facility, consult with a dust collection engineering and manufacturing company with extensive experience designing systems for diverse applications.

If you have further questions unique to your application or would like to speak with an engineer, give us a call at 888-221-0312 or email [email protected]

Dust Collector Sizing Quiz

Would you like to get a price range and a recommended cartridge collector? Simply complete this dust collector sizing calculator  and you’ll immediately receive an email with your recommended unit along with a price range for the unit.  A dedicated account manager will also contact you within 24 hours to assist in finding the right solution.

Cartridge Dust Collector Sizing Quiz

Baghouse Dust Removal Options

Why Baghouse Dust Removal Matters

The right baghouse dust removal method can help minimize problems that arise due to dust build up in your hopper.

A hopper is designed to be temporary storage for your discharge. What happens if you have excessive dust build up in your hopper? This can result in your air flow being blocked off and would cause a loss of suction throughout the dust collection system.  This can also become a hazard because it’s more opportunity for combustible dusts to create a dangerous explosion. The right dust removal method for your application can help you avoid these issues.

Key Components

The best method of dust removal from your hopper is dependent on some of the following components:

  • What’s your Dust Collector Type? Baghouse or Cartridge Dust Collector?
  • What are the characteristics of your dust? For example, hazardous or non-hazardous?
  • What are the loading rates of your dust?

Baghouse Dust Removal Methods

Baghouse Dust Collector

Enclosed Box

A simple pipe system funneling dust into an enclosed box, placed underneath your hopper, is one dust removal option. Your maintenance team would be required to monitor and empty the box once capacity has been reached. Prompt removal of dust build up in your enclosed box helps prevent backup or an overflow of the box itself. Non hazardous dust and light dust loads typically use enclosed boxes.

 

Drum or Bag

A removable drum or bag can be a simple and easy solution to collecting and disposing dust. Once a drum or bag fills up, maintenance simply removes it by hand or forklift. Once empty, the drum or bag can then be put back into its place. This is ideal for non toxic dusts that you can easily handle.

Rotary Valves for Baghouses

Rotary Valve

Rotary valves (also known as airlocks, rotary feeders, or airlock feeders) help transition material from a dust collector to a drum or bin. It seals a pressurized system against loss of air and pressure. This minimizes product loss during processing. Dust collection, pneumatic conveying, mixing, weighing, feeding, and blending use rotary valves. Larger baghouse systems with over 10,000 CFM  can also use rotary valves.

Screw Conveyor for Baghouse Dust Collectors

Large baghouses with heavy dust loads typically use screw conveyors. The screw conveyer would transport dust away from the collector, then send it to a designated disposal area. This is ideal for hazardous or reused materials.  Agriculture, mining, foundries, wood production, and chemicals are applications that use screw conveyors.

Would you like to learn more about design considerations for a new dust collection system? For more information, download our dust collector purchasing guide.

Dust Collection Design Considerations 7

Different Baghouse Styles: Advantages and Disadvantages

When it comes down to finding the right dust collection system, there are a few different baghouse styles to choose from. So how do you know which one is best for you?

Baghouse Styles

Before we dig into the differences between some of the baghouse styles, you need to consider your dust properties and air-to-cloth ratio.  Baghouses are ideally suited for large volume applications with airflow exceeding 1,000 CFM or when high temperature applications are above 375 degrees.  In these environments, a baghouse will handle and most efficiently filter your dust laden air. 

There are three main baghouses styles (e.g. shaker, reverse, and pulse-jet)  that are commonly used in most industrial processing and manufacturing applications.  Here’s a brief overview on the pros and cons of each to help guide you in identifying the right option for your work environment.

Pulse Jet Baghouse 

Pros:    Cons:
Constantly cleaned so there is minimal dust build up in the dust collector   Requires dry compressed air
Space Efficient   Cannot be used when there is humidity of high moisture content present
Requires fewer bags   Cannot handle high temperatures (unless you use special filter media
     

Reverse Air Baghouse 

Pros:  Cons:
Can handle high temperatures Needs to be cleaned often
Gentle cleaning which allows for longer bag life Residual dust build up is hard to remove
Units are typically compartmentalized into sections which allows them to be cleaned without shutting off the entire baghouse Low air-to-cloth ratio
   

Shaker Baghouse 

Pros:     Cons:
Very simple to operate     Cannot handle high temperatures
Low initial investment cost     Not space efficient (takes up a large area)
Units are typically compartmentalized into sections which allows them to be cleaned without shutting off the entire baghouse     Energy and time sensitive 

What Volume Dust Collector do I need?

Do you have a new dust collector project in the works and need help determining the volume? Our introduction to dust collector volume can help with that.

Baghouse Dust Collector

The Right Volume

The most important consideration to factor into a new dust collector is making sure the airflow or volume of the dust collector is efficient at capturing dust and is right for your application.

For instance, if the volume of your system is too low then your system will not filter dust as efficiently. As a result, your production, air quality and life of your collector can be shortened.  Similarly, if it is too high then your energy consumption costs can be higher and you could disrupt the process of your application. 

Measurement of Volume

You measure volume in cubic feet per minute or otherwise known as CFM.  CFM is a measurement of airflow related to air conditioning, heating and ventilation environments. In dust collector applications CFM measures the amount of air per minute that can be moved from a space.  

Work environments vary dramatically from one another based on several variables. Even very similar environments can require vastly different volumes. To determine the right capabilities for a new dust collector, here are some variables to consider carefully.

  1. How are you collecting your dust?
  2. What is the size of your duct being used to collect the dust?
  3. What is the cubic feet of your work environment?
  4. Calculating volume for new installations.

Do you need more detailed information? Download our full guide to dust collector volume below. In addition, it comes with a chart that can be helpful for your new dust collector project.

 A Guide to Dust Collector Volume

Do you have more questions or need some help? Our equipment specialists are also available at 888-221-0312.

Related Resources:

Video: Air to Cloth Ratio

Video: How Much Does a Dust Collector Cost?

How to Get the Right Dust Collector for your Application

How To Get the Right Air to Cloth Ratio for Your Dust Collector

Video Option: Air-to-Cloth Ratio

Dust collector air to cloth ratio is a critical measure to ensure your system is performing efficiently. 

How to get the right air to cloth ratio

 

What is Air-to-Cloth Ratio?

Air-to-Cloth ratio (a.k.a. Air-to-Media) is defined as a measurement of the amount of air passing through one square foot of filter media.

Watch Video: Air-to-Cloth Ratio

Air to Cloth Ratio

Which is better, Lower or Higher Air-to-Cloth Ratio?

Generally the lower your air-to-cloth ratio, the more effective your system is at removing dust from your work environment.

If you operate on a higher air-to-cloth ratio, one of the common issues you will encounter is a decrease in suction. This happens because there is too much dust to capture with an insufficient amount of filter media. The filter cake on your bag eventually builds up too quickly. As a result, your air velocity and suction decreases. From there it’s a domino effect and your plant air quality decreases, filters clog quicker, and valve life expectancy is impacted. So, you’ll be performing change-outs more frequently which will cost both time and money.

How to Calculate Air-to-Cloth Ratio

To calculate air-to-cloth ratio, take the amount of airflow (CFM) and divide that by the amount of filter area within your dust collector. 

For example, if you’re calculating for a cartridge collector, a typical range would be a 4:1 air to cloth ratio.  Keep in mind that environments with a large ventilation area and more pick up points require a system with a higher CFM to provide adequate suction.  Would you like to know which air to cloth ratio may be right for your project? If so, download our air to cloth guide which provides the recommended ratio for a wide variety of applications.

Why is right Air-to-Cloth ratio important?

What are the negative effects of improper Air-to-Cloth ratio?

  • Poor venting, therefore causing damage to equipment
  • Incur high pressure drops 
  • Impacts your air velocity
  • Excessive use of compressed air

Related Resources:

Filter Bag Media Quiz

Video: Guide to Fan Sizing

How to Get the Right Dust Collector for your Application

What Volume Dust Collector do I need?

Guide to Dust Collector Fan Sizing

Video Option: Guide to Fan Sizing

Dust Collector Fan Sizing

Industrial fans are used in dust collection systems to push dust-laden air through the filters. Fans can either force a draft (push air) or induce a draft (suck air) through the dust collector. Industrial fans are an essential component to a dust collection system so it’s important to choose the right size fan to make sure you have adequate suction to remove dust from the work environment.

Today we will be helping you size your dust collector fan with this 5-step process. Dust collector fan sizing includes consideration of the following variables.

• Airflow or Cubic Feet Per Minute, commonly known as CFM
• Static Pressure
• Environment & Location
• Power Requirements
• Size & Type of Dust Collector

Airflow or CFM

The first variable you want to consider with dust collector fan sizing is your airflow volume or CFM. CFM stands for cubic feet per minute and measures the amount of air per minute that can be moved from a space. If your CFM is unknown, you can use your pickup points and duct sizing to get started instead.

Static Pressure

The second variable you want to consider is your static pressure. This is defined as the pressure created by a fan or some other source to move air through a ventilation system.

Environment & Location

Next, take a look at your environment and location. Location, temperature, altitude, humidity, and area classification can all affect the size and type of fan that is right for your dust collection system.

  • Location – If you are in a humid location this will affect the paint finish of your fan and the fan design.
  • Temperature, Altitude, Humidity – When designing a fan these are all variables used to size the right fan wheel. This will ensure you are moving the right amount of air with the right amount of static pressure.
  • Environment & Area Classification – Make sure to find out if your environment includes any hazardous area classifications. Area classification is also important to ensure your fan meets the classification requirements.

Power Requirements

A 3-phase fan is commonly used in dust collection applications. You will also need to consider the power requirements of the country in which the fan will be operating. Different countries have different standards.

Size and Type of your Dust Collection System

Lastly, the fan you choose is determined by the size and type of your dust collection system. There are multiple models which handle different volumes.

A top mount or collector mounted fan is typically used on cartridge collectors that handle a range of 1,500-10,000 CFM. Whereas ground mounted models are used on Baghouses and multi-module cartridge collectors where high volumes are required. Typically, up to 290,000 CFM.

If you need help sizing your fan, you can contact one of our equipment specialists at 888-221-0312, email [email protected] or request a consultation here.

Dust Collection Resources

Looking for additional resources on dust collection systems? Get a free download of our Dust Collector Purchasing eBook below. It’s a comprehensive guide organized into key topics such as dust properties, volume, air to cloth ratio, dust collector styles, and more.

The Importance of Static Pressure for Your Dust Collector

Static Pressure and Your Dust Collection System

Static pressure is the pressure created by a fan or other source to move air through a ventilation system and plays a critical role in the design and performance of pulse jet baghouse dust collection systems. Today we are discussing the importance of static pressure, what it is, how it’s measured, and how to calculate it.

What is Static Pressure?

Static pressure is used to determine the fan size you’ll need for your dust collection system. If the fan you choose for your system cannot handle the static pressure, air will not be able to move properly through the system and your dust collector will not be able to remove dust effectively.

How Static Pressure is Measured

Like differential pressure, static pressure is measured in inches of water and sometimes will be called water column. The abbreviation for this unit is usually seen as “w.c.” and can also be seen as “w.g.”

How to Calculate Static Pressure

To calculate required static pressure, sum the following components of a dust collector system.

  1. To start add 0.5” Second
  2. Add the filter resistance of the collector. This will be the maximum recommended differential pressure from a dirty set of filters.
  3. In most cases you can use 6” for a baghouse and 5” for a cartridge collector. Then add 1” If an outlet duct exists in the system.
  4. Fourth, add the friction loss in the duct system coming to the dust collector. For simple runs of 100’ or less, you can use 6” as a rule of thumb.

Please keep in mind these are general guidelines and there are many other variables to consider to make sure your system is engineered safely for your unique work environment to achieve peak performance.

To get specific help for your application, contact one of our equipment specialists at 888-221-0312, email [email protected] or request a consultation below.

Dust Collector Project Consultation

Dust Collection Resources

In search of additional dust collection resources to help you? Get a free download of our Dust Collector Purchasing eBook below. It’s a full guide organized into key topics such as dust properties, volume, air to cloth ratio, dust collector styles, and more.

Dust Collector Purchasing eBook

Video: Guide to Fan Sizing

Video: Air to Cloth Ratio

Video: How Much Does a Dust Collector Cost?