industry filters setup

4 Reasons to Replace Dust Collector Filter Elements

You want the commercial dust collector filter systems you install to function as intended, so it’s essential to know when and why you should replace the filter elements.

Replacing dust collector filter elements can be expensive, especially if you don’t do it correctly and at the right time. Here are reasons you may want to change industrial dust collector filter elements.

1. To Prevent Irreversible Damage to the Filter

bag filters filled with dust

At Robinson’s Filter Solutions, we use the McWinn™ industrial air filter cleaning technology to refurbish dust collector filters that can still be saved and reinstalled.

If you do not take the filter out in good time for refurbishing, it could sustain irreversible damage, such as tearing or burning, depending on its risks.

Since the facility’s dust collection system needs to keep running when the filter is being cleaned and polished, you should consider replacing the old filter with a brand new one or a recently refurbished one.

Sometimes during the air filter cleaning process, our inspection may reveal that the filter has already suffered irreversible damage and must be replaced and thrown away.

Our inspection process entails subjecting the filter to airflow, pressure, and several backlight bleed tests.

If light does bleed through, we suggest replacing the filter with our lower-cost aftermarket custom filters. If it’s still functional, we complete the cleaning and polishing before packing and delivering the filter for replacement.

2. Choosing and Using the Wrong Filter Bag

A common mistake is choosing and using an incorrect filter, primarily for baghouses. The same problem also happens with industrial air filter cartridges, but this issue is not as prevalent.

If your filter installer says that the filter media you chose (or are using) is not the right one for your system, you must replace the filter immediately to avoid various risks.

For example, if your facility filters abrasive dust particles such as sand but you are using a nanofiber filter instead of a spunbond polyester filter, the installer will advise you to have it replaced with the latter.

One of the main reasons dust collector systems become inefficient is using the wrong filter, so you must complete a replacement to install the right filter for the type of particulate matter you need to filter.

Besides the type and nature of the matter to be filtered, other ways to know you chose the right filter include determining the frequency of filter bag cleaning and the number of particles to filter.

For example, if the facility has humid heat conditions, you can’t use a polyester filter because it will be damaged easily. Also, a filter bag in a baghouse will work better for larger loads of particulate matter, while a cartridge filter in a cartridge collector will work better for lighter loads.

3. The Filter’s Lifespan is Past

Industrial air filters for baghouses or cartridge dust collector systems require replacing when their lifespan is over. The lifespan differs from filter to filter, depending on the manufacturer.

When you buy the filter element, the manufacturer should indicate its lifespan and when to expect it to become entirely non-functional.

Regularly cleaning and refurbishing a filter can increase its lifespan and reusability, but only to a limit.

You can tell the lifespan of a filter is over when you notice repeated poor performance despite regular cleaning. Poor performance of a properly maintained air filter might mean that the filter has become fully depth-loaded or blinded.

With time, minute particulate matter passes through the fabric or filter media and becomes permanently lodged there.

If the filter is fully depth-loaded, it can no longer be cleaned sufficiently by the dust collector’s online or offline cleaning system.

The filter is declared depth-loaded or clogged if the differential pressure is too high, making the airflow insufficient. 

The differential pressure is the pressure difference between the clean air side and the dust-caked side of the filter.

A filter gauge comes in handy for determining the pressure difference. When it’s higher than what industrial air filter manufacturers recommend for your filter or system, it is necessary to replace it.

The standard practice for most filters is replacing them when the system cannot clean the filter to reach a differential pressure range lower than 6″.

4. To Maintain Sufficient Filter Binding

filters in wood factory

Regularly maintaining and replacing dust collector filters ensures the preservation of the filter’s binding effect.

Not to be confused with filter blinding (negative), filter binding (positive) refers to how much space is available across the filter media or filter for the dust to hold on and not fall off before you clean it.

The binding capacity of the filter is high at first when freshly installed but keeps dropping as more dust cakes on it. After some time, the filter exceeds its limit and must be cleaned or replaced.

The filter may deplete its binding capacity after a prolonged period, primarily if it is not maintained regularly. Once this happens, your installer should guide you in choosing the right filter to replace it.

Closing Thoughts

While replacing dust collector filter elements is inevitable, you can reduce the frequency at which replacements happen by maintaining the filters regularly.

An easy way to maintain the filters is through online and offline cleaning, as the situation requires. If your filter is relatively in the early stages of its lifespan, online cleaning using the system’s cleaning mechanism will work.

Online cleaning becomes less effective as the filter nears the end of its lifespan. You might choose at this point to use offline cleaning or have the filter replaced altogether.

Whether you want your dust collector filter elements replaced or cleaned, Robinson’s Filter Solutions is here to help. We can schedule an on-site visit to your premises to assess your filtration needs and advise you accordingly.