Different Baghouse Styles: Advantages and Disadvantages

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

Some of the elements you need to consider will be 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 styles of baghouses  (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 temperaturesNeeds 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 baghouseLow air-to-cloth ratio

Shaker Baghouse

Very simple to operateCannot handle high temperatures
Low initial investment costNot space efficient (takes up a large area)
Units are typically compartmentalized into sections which allows them to be cleaned without shutting off the entire baghouseEnergy and time sensitive 



The 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:

-Reduced filter life

-Consistently clogged filters

-Higher maintenance and energy costs

-Decreased efficiency

To avoid the dangers of  an undersized dust collector we ask you to consider both CFM and Air to Cloth Ratio.  

Cubic Feet Per Minute

Dust collector volume is measured in cubic feet per minute or CFM.  To put it simply, CFM is a measurement of how much airflow your dust collector can move per minute.  To determine your CFM, there are a few variables you should consider:

-The size of the area that needs ventilation.
-Method of ventilation
-Volume of dust being produced

Air to Cloth Ratio

The other important factor to consider when sizing your unit will be Air to Cloth ratio. This is the amount of filter media relative to the amount of air passing through the dust collector.  You typically want to operate with a lower a air to cloth ratio because that will be better at removing dust from your environment.  With a lower air to cloth ratio you have plenty of filter media available to capture the dust coming through from the air stream, and you aren’t trying to push as much dust through the filter media.  When you air to cloth ratio is too high, the dust you are trying to collect is embedded into the filters too fast for your system to efficiently pulse.  You end up with rapid build up of dust, which ends up clogging your filters and making your dust collector work even harder than it should be.

For more detailed information on sizing your collector, how to choose the right dust collector for your application, or to speak to one of our equipment specialists please contact us at 888-221-0312.



Benefits of PTFE Membrane

Are you spending too much time and money on costly change-outs?

If you’d like to save yourself from the headaches that come with change-outs, then PTFE may be the answer to your problem. Our brief video guide will provide some information on how PTFE membrane works and its benefits when its added to your filter media.

Hi this is Bob from US Air Filtration.

Would you like to get twice the life out of your filter bags and reduce those costly change-outs?

Would you like your dust collection system to capture more dust?

Would you like to get more consistent airflow or suction through your dust collection system while reducing wear and tear and reducing maintenance costs?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes. then PTFE membrane filter bags may be the answer.

For you to understand how PTFE membrane bags can accomplish these things let’s first look at how a standard filter bag works.

On a standard bag dust builds up on the outside of the bag and creates what is known as the filter cake. The filter cake actually does the filtering while the bag fabric acts only as a support for the cake. When the bags are pulsed most of the filter cake releases and the build-up of dust begins again.

Over time however some of the dust gets embedded deep into the bag fibers. Eventually the bags will completely plug and need to be replaced.

Conversely when PTFE is added to the bag it acts as the filter cake. Commonly known as Teflon. PTFE is used in many different applications from cookware to outerwear and more. When a PTFE membrane is laminated to a filter bag media it can enhance the performance of both the filter bag and the dust collection system.

Let’s take a closer look at how a PTFE membrane works. If we zoom in on the PTFE membrane we can see that it is actually made out of tiny microscopic holes like Swiss cheese. The holes are large enough to allow air molecules and vapors to pass through but small enough to inhibit even the smallest dust particles from getting through.

Because the membrane keeps the dust on the surface of the bag particles never get embedded in the bag fibers and the bags will not fail from plugging up. Typically PTFE membrane bags wear out before they plug up.

Usually lasting twice as long as standard bag. With twice the lifespan costly change outs and plant shutdowns are cut in half reducing maintenance costs and increasing plant production.

Since the bags are not gradually plugging up over time, PTFE bags give the additional benefit of providing more consistent airflow or suction from your dust collection system.

Because of the small pore size, PTFE membrane bags are up to eight times more efficient than a standard filter bag. This means it can cut out dust collector emissions by up to 800 percent.

Another advantage of PTFE membrane bags is that they clean easier because of their slick surface. This means less bag pulsing which means less wear and tear on the bags as well as the diaphragms and solenoid valves. It also means the system uses less compressed air resulting in reduced energy costs.

It can also improve performance when higher moisture levels or sticky dust are present.

PTFE membrane can be added to any bag media and can replace standard

bags and almost all applications. While there is a cost to add the membrane, the extra cost easily pays for itself by providing longer life, reduced maintenance cost, reduced wear and tear, and lower emissions.

To find out if PTFE membrane filter bags are right for you call and talk to one of our experts today.

Related Posts:

Cost Saving Tips for Your Dust Collector

Guide to Cartridge Media



Guide to Cartridge Media

When it comes down to choosing the right filter media, it may not be as tough as you think. 

Do you know the characteristics of the dust you will be filtering?  If you do, then you’re a step ahead of the game.  There are three common medias for filter cartridges and they can cover a wide variety of applications. If you know your dust characteristics then watch our short video guide that provides a brief introduction and understanding into cartridge media, and which one may be best for your application.

Video Transcript:

Hi this is Bob from US Air Filtration and today we’re going to talk about cartridge filter media’s.

While there’s a lot of different media’s out there, most applications, probably over 90% of them, can be handled with one of three common medias. We’re gonna take a look at those today.

I have here a couple of standard filters. This one is made from a media called 80/20. 80/20 gets its name from being 80% cellulose and 20% polyester which is mixed in to give it some strength. But it looks and feels a lot like paper and the paper is folded into pleats and packed into this cartridge.

This is what a swatch of the media looks like before it’s been put into the cartridge.

This filter is a great general use filter for blasting or paint boosts and just general dust filtration.

The next filter I want to show you is one made with a media called nanofiber. Now you look at these two filters they look almost identical. Actually when you look at the media, the media looks identical, and that’s because nanofiber is made by taking the same 80/20 substrate and putting a microscopic web of fibers over the paper.

So when you look at them next to each other they look identical, but the Nanofiber is much better at handling the superfine dust particulate.

So when you have plasma cutting or smoke or really fine dust, nanofiber is going to be the better choice for you because those little fibers capture the dust and keep them from plugging up the filter.

You can use nanofiber as a general use filter as well. Some people say it lasts longer than the standard 80/20 because of that layer of nanofiber on the top of it.

The third filter I want to show you (or filter media) is this one which is made from spunbond polyester.

You’ll notice that the pleats are not as packed in this filter and that’s because this media is a little more permeable. This is a very tough rigid plastic feeling filter media.

This is what the spunbond polyester looks like a close.

This is filter is one you that you want to use when you’re trying to avoid damage to the filter because you’ve got tough dust.

So this is used often in cement industries, cardboard, abrasive blasting, sandblasting or anything else where strength is required. Spunbond polyester is the filter media of choice.

You can also add a PTFE membrane to spunbond polyester that you can’t to these other filters. So when you have a real sticky dust, putting the membrane on spunbond polyester may also be an option for you.

There are also other specialty media’s to help take care of unique environmental conditions. To find out which filter media is right for you call and talk to one of our experts.

Related Posts:

Dust Collector Change Out Check List

What to look for in a Dust Collector Supplier



Benefits of On Demand Cleaning

Are you running your dust collector at it’s peak efficiency?

A preventative maintenance plan is one way to make sure that your filters are clean, and that both your airflow and pick up velocities are at its maximum efficiency. So how do you know when to clean your filters? One of the easiest ways to avoid the guess work is by using “On Demand Cleaning”. Take a look at our brief video guide below that shows how on-demand cleaning can lower your long term maintenance and energy costs.  When you purchase your next dust collector this feature should come as a standard component.

Video Transcript:

Hi this is Bob from US Air Filtration. Differential pressure is a great tool that you can use to make sure your dust collector is operating properly.

Today we’re going to talk about what differential pressure is how it works and how you can use it to better maintain your dust collector.

Differential pressure commonly called DP measures the difference in pressure between the clean and dirty sides of the collector. As dust builds up on the filters it creates more resistance for the air trying to pass through. This creates unequal pressure on each side of the filter. The dirtier the filters become the more unequal the pressure gets resulting in the higher DP reading.

To illustrate this concept let me compare it to something we’re all familiar with; drinking from a straw.

If I drink this soda through a regular soda straw, I can get a fair amount of liquid with not much effort. However if I try to drink soda through a small little coffee straw, it takes a lot more effort and I get a lot less volume through the straw.

The same thing is happening in your dust collector as the filters get dirty the holes that allow air to pass through get smaller and smaller causing the differential pressure to rise.

Once your dust collector’s cleaning cycle has taken effect then the dust is released and it opens up those pores and allows air to flow through and your differential pressure will drop.

Differential pressure is measured by a gauge with the fancy name called a manometer. This gauge is usually part of the dust collectors control panel.

Air tubes from the clean and dirty sides of the collector are brought into the control panel and connected to the port’s on the gauge.

The gauge can either be analog or digital in either case the gauges typically report the DP in a measurement called inches of water or sometimes called water column.

Since every dust collection system is different, DP readings are relative and should be compared to the collectors baseline levels.

A collector with brand new filters usually sees a DP reading of one to two inches. As filters age and become more en-trained with dust the differential pressure levels rise over time. Near the end of the filters life, the DP will be around six inches and stay there even after the cleaning cycle has run.

Running a collector consistently above six is not recommended since it will likely cause a noticeable drop in plant suction and lead to faster dust en-trainment and shorter filter life.

Sudden changes in DP can indicate problems in the collector. When the differential pressure becomes suddenly low it means there is no resistance to the filter because of the presence of holes or poor seals.

DP that suddenly becomes high means the filters are plugged which could be due to problems in the cleaning cycle. Usually a bad diaphragm or solenoid valve is the culprit.

For more information on differential pressure or to have one of our representatives help you understand what differential pressure is telling you on your collector give us a call today.

Related Posts:

What’s the right MERV rating for my Dust Collector?

Dust Collector Change Out Check List



What type of Dust Collector is right for my application?

Learn the differences between the three most common dust collection systems – baghouses, cartridge collectors and bin vents.

Abstract view of a cement plant

Your dust collector is a critical component in your facility, so here are a few questions you should consider when investing in a new dust collector.-What type of dust are you filtering?

-What CFM or volume are you looking for?
-Are there any size or restrictions for the space the dust collector needs to be in?
-Do you have AQMD or any local emissions requirements you need to meet?
-What is the temperature of my environment like? Cold? Hot?

After you consider these questions, the next step is looking into what type of dust collector will provide you with the most optimal performance.


Baghouses are typically the largest of the three types of dust collectors. They are best suited for high volume and high temperature applications. You would consider this if you were dust loading more than one 55 gallon a drum per day. The most common applications we see are:





Cartridge Collector

Cartridge Collectors are compact and very modular in its design. These are best suited for applications where your dust loading volume is low (collecting less than one 55 gallon drum per day), if you have a small footprint to work with, or if you want to easily expand in the future. The most common applications we see are:

-Steel Fabrication

-Bulk Powder Processing


-Paint Booth

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, modular, and designed for easy change-outs. They are designed to efficiently vent silos and tanks while keeping the product inside the silo. So most often you will see them being utilized in these applications:



-Tank loading

-Conveyor Belt

Related Posts:

Dust Properties and Choosing a Collector

Dust Collector Design Features for Easy Maintenance



Dust Collector Design Features for Easy Maintenance

How to avoid the mistake of purchasing a dust collector that requires more maintenance than it’s worth.

Cartridge Collector Landing Page Banner

Don’t get lured in by a low price or a name brand, and then forget the long term costs of maintenance on a dust collector.  To avoid the hassle of excessive and costly change-outs you will want to consider the benefits and features of each dust collector you look at, and how it can save you money now but also in the future.

Listed below are some of the easy maintenance design features to look for. These design features will help you save time and money over the lifespan of the dust collector, and you are going to want them included.

-On-demand cleaning for reliable performance and reduced wear and tear

-Cold climate kit to protect valves from freezing

-Modular design with low profile options for easy expansion and access

-Filter change-outs performed outside 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

-Multiple cartridge filter options for a variety of applications

Related Posts:

Dust Properties and Choosing a Collector 

What to Look for in a Dust Collector Supplie



What’s the right MERV Rating for my Dust Collector?

You’ve heard the term MERV rating before, but what is it exactly and how does it affect your dust collector?

What is a MERV Rating?

The term MERV is actually an acronym and stands for “Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value”. To put in in simpler terms it’s asking the question “How effective is your filter?”. MERV ratings are assigned numerical values based on the how efficient they are at capturing dust particles. The numerical values are typically rated between 1-16.

MERV & Dust Collector Performance

Now how does MERV rating impact your dust collector’s performance and why should it be important to you? To relate how we use MERV ratings in an everyday life scenario, you can simply think of it like a car rating on the website Kelly Blue Book. Kelly Blue Book is a website that allows you to check the rating and value of new and used cars based on their performance, price, mileage, and other factors that may be important to you as a consumer. When you go shopping for a new car you end up choosing one that’s going to have the characteristics to match your personal wants and needs. So how does this all relate to MERV ratings and your dust collector? Well, when it comes down to choosing the right filters for your dust collector you are going through the same process; you choose your filters based on the characteristics that most suit your facility’s needs. You’re going into the process knowing that you need to get the most optimal performance out of your filters.

Choosing the Right MERV Rating

Choosing the right filter and MERV rating for your dust collector is based on your application and the dust particles you need to capture. Higher MERV ratings are suited best for very fine particulate filtration applications.  For example, if you operate a dust collector in a woodworking shop and your dust particles are larger, a higher MERV rating isn’t important. However, if you operate a dust collector in a plant that has a plasma cutter which emits smoke and very fine dust particles, your application would benefit from filters with a higher MERV rating. You would see a performance difference because a filter with a higher MERV rating is more efficient at capturing small fine dust.

Tips & Tricks

One tip to avoid blinding your bags and causing your dust collector to work inefficiently is to change your filters frequently.  Don’t make your filters or the dust collector equipment work even harder than necessary, just because you are operating on an inefficient MERV rating.  Some other tips and tricks to avoid this and a baghouse emergency can be found in our related posts below.  You can also get our helpful MERV rating application chart if you are looking at a specific industry’s rating.

Related Posts

Dust Properties and Choosing a Collector 

Dust Collector Change Out Check List



Dust Properties and Choosing a Collector

Do you know your dust?  Consider your dust properties carefully to identify the best dust collection solution.

When you’re looking for dust collector equipment or filters you’ll need to get up close and personal with your dust!  Choosing the right collector based on your dust properties is really going to help you narrow down the diverse selection of equipment that can be daunting to choose from.  Consider the following dust properties carefully:

-Size: What is the size of the dust particles being filtered; fine or large?

-Density: Is the dust low in density like wood chips or heavy in density like fine steel dust?

-Chemistry: Will you be filtering any abrasive dust? Corrosive dust? 

-Temperature: Will you need to operate in a high heat environment?

-Moisture: Is there any moisture or oil present in the dust?

Now that we’ve considered your dust properties we can narrow down the selection of dust collectors that may be the best fit for your facility.  These are the three main types of collectors and what industries typically use them:


Baghouses are usually suited for large volume applications.  They will perform best when you have a large area or high volume of dust that needs to be captured.  For example, collecting more than one 55 gallon a drum per day and an airflow exceeding 1000 CFM would be considered high volume.  You will also see baghouses in high temperature applications.  Here are some industries that use baghouses:




Cartridge Collectors

Cartridge collectors can be more compact and modular than baghouses.  When you have height or space restrictions in your facility, a cartridge collector is going to be one of your best considerations.  A cartridge collector will work best when you are collecting a low volume of dust and  when you have a CFM of 500 or greater.  For example, less than one 55 gallon drum a day would be considered best.  The more common industries that use cartridge collectors:



-Paint/Powder Booths

Bin Vents

Bin vents are going to work best in applications where you are moving product from location to the other, and the dust being produced from that movement needs to be captured.  Just like a cartridge collector, bin vents are quite compact.  They handle a lower volume of dust and can handle between 400 – 10,000 CFM.  Some of the environments they work best in are:




Now that you have an introduction to dust properties, the most common dust collectors, and which one may work best for your application, you have enough information to get started on your next dust collector project.  You can also take advantage of our free Dust Collector Purchasing Guide that will help direct you to buying a dust collector that will provide you with the most optimal performance for your needs.

Related Posts:

How to Get the Right Air to Cloth Ratio 

What to Look for in a Dust Collector Supplier



How To Get the Right Air to Cloth Ratio


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

Let’s first start in explaining what air-to-cloth ratio means. Air-to-Cloth ratio, which can also be known as Air-to-Media, is defined as a measurement of the amount of air passing through one square foot of filter media.

Generally the lower your air-to-cloth ratio, the more effectively your system is at removing dust -from the work environment. If operate on a higher air-to-cloth ratio, one of the common issues you will encounter is a decrease in suction. This is because there is too much dust being captured by an insufficient amount of filter media. The filter cake on your bag eventually builds up too quickly; resulting in a decrease in air velocity and suction. From there it becomes a domino effect; plant air quality decreases, filters clog quicker, valve life expectancy is impacted and you’ll be performing change-outs more frequently.

To calculate air-to-cloth ratio in your existing system, the simple formula is to take the amount of airflow (CFM) and divide that by the amount of filter area within your dust collector.  For example a cartridge collector would have a normal range of 4:1 air to cloth ratio.  Environments with a large ventilation area or more pick up points require a system with a higher CFM to provide adequate suction.  To see which air to cloth ratio may be right for your project, 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?

  • Extend your filter life
  • You minimize your operating costs
  • Meet air quality goals and requirements
  • You are running your dust collector system at it’s peak efficiency

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

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

Related Posts:

What Volume Dust Collector do I Need?

Dust Collector Change Out Check Listh