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How Industrial Bag Filters Work and When to Change Them

Author: Lisa Frank


Industrial bag filters, or dust collector bags, can be used in many different applications, such as woodworking, foundries, food processing, or any application that needs to handle heavy dust loading particulate.

A baghouse filter not only provides cleaner air in your facility, but it also offers a safer environment for employees and reduces equipment maintenance. Baghouse dust collector filters remove dust from the air as it passes through, and then releases clean air to reduce pollution in your facility and the environment.

As you search for the bag filter that will work best for your application, consider how bag filters function, how they’re used, how often they need to be changed, and the many benefits they provide.

How Does an Industrial Baghouse Filter Work?

 Every baghouse dust collector consists of the housing, bag filters, a cleaning mechanism, a fan or blower, and inlet and outlet ducts.

 The baghouse filter is a long cylindrical bag made of fabric, designed to pull dust particles in the air of your facility through the bags. As dirty air passes through the bags, dust particles are collected on the outside of the bag filter, allowing clean air to flow out into the environment or back into your facility.

As the dust layer accumulates, every baghouse dust collector has a cleaning mechanism to remove the dust buildup from the bag filters. Many baghouse dust collectors use one of three common filter cleaning systems, including:  

  • Shaker System: A basic filter cleaning system that uses a motor to shake the dust particulate off the outside of the bags.
  • Reverse-Flow: This type of filter utilizes a fan that blows air into the center of a bag, which then forces the dust off the outside of the bag.
  • Pulse Jet Filter: This method shoots a blast of compressed air down the center of a bag and forcibly blasts the dust off the outside of the bag.

Ultimately, each type of filter cleaning system removes the dust from the baghouse filter, which then it ends up in a hopper, where it can eventually be cleaned out.

What Are the Benefits of Baghouse Filters? 

Baghouse filters offer a wide range of benefits including cleaner air quality, improved employee health and safety, compliance with environmental regulations, reduced risk of equipment damage, improved product quality, and greater process efficiency.

Industrial bag filters can handle heavy dust loading and large dust particulate, require less frequent filter changes, withstand higher temperatures, and are able to filter sticky materials, wood dust, and more.  

  1. Ideal for Heavy Dust Loading – Baghouse dust collectors are best suited for use in industrial and manufacturing settings that require a high volume of material to be filtered on a regular basis.
  2. Can Handle High Temperatures – For applications that require higher temperatures, a baghouse dust collector filter can withstand temperatures as high as 250°F and up to 400°F.
  3. Filters Larger Particles – Baghouse filters can effectively filter medium-to large dust particles.
  4. Can Handle Abrasive and Sticky Materials – Industrial baghouse filters come in several materials that are resistant to mineral acids and alkalis. They can filter out abrasive materials such as wood and grain dust. Baghouse filters are also well suited for releasing adhesive particulates.
  5. Filters Are Durable – Since they are designed to withstand harsh conditions, baghouse filters typically have a longer service life than cartridge dust collectors, which reduces the frequency of replacing the filter.

What Applications Are Bag Filters Used In?

Baghouse dust collector filters work best for applications that deal with heavy dust, higher temperatures, require filtration for larger particles, and have more abrasive or sticky materials. An industrial bag filter can capture pollutants such as sawdust, fumes, powders, and more.

Industrial bag filters can be used widely in many industries, for a wide range of applications, including but not limited to:

  • Automotive manufacturing
  • Cement manufacturing
  • Fiberglass cutting
  • Fibrous dust
  • Food processing
  • Glass and Ceramic Manufacturing
  • Grain (Flour, Wheat, Filling Bins, and Silos)
  • Lime Kilns
  • Lumber milling
  • Metal Processing
  • Mineral bulk loading
  • Mining applications
  • Smelting
  • Steel foundries
  • Woodworking

How Often Should You Change Baghouse Filters?

Due to their durability and cleaning mechanisms, industrial baghouse filters should not need to be changed often, but it also depends on your application and facility.

With consistent inspections, you’ll be able to predict how frequently your bag filters need to be changed. It’s essential to conduct regular inspections as well as be aware of the signs and factors that it’s time to replace the baghouse filter, including:  

  1. Type and amount of dust being collected – Certain types of dust particles may wear down filters faster. Also consider how much dust is being collected and frequency of bag dust collector use.
  2. Filter bag material – The type of material used for your bag filter can also affect how soon it needs to be changed.
  3. Clogged bag filter due to excessive dust cake buildup – If the filter cleaning system is no longer clearing out most of the dust, leading to a buildup, it may be time for a new filter.
  4. Visible damage to bag filters such as tears or holes – During regular inspections, be sure to look for any damage to filters.
  5. Check the pressure differential gauge – If the pressure reads higher than 6”, this may indicate reduced airflow and filters should be replaced.
  6. Dust particles can be seen in the air in your facility – If you’re able to visibly see dust particles in your facility, it’s time to replace your baghouse filter.

Select the Right Bag Filter for Your Application

Choosing the right industrial bag filter for your application will improve air filtration in your facility, reduce employee safety risks, and result in a more efficient process for your application.

If you have any additional questions or need assistance with choosing the best filter for your application, contact us.

Contact AirMax Today

Contact us using the form below or call us at 216-716-8200.