How Duct Design Can Affect Dust Collector Performance

Duct Work Picture

It is not uncommon for people to think their dust collector is not working correctly, only to find out that the duct design is the real problem. Properly sizing the dust collector for the application is critical, but the proper duct design ultimately determines whether the final installation meets the dust collection needs. Correctly sized equipment and effective  ductwork design must work in harmony for the system to perform at its best.  


WHAT is ducting and ductwork?

The ducting is the long tube or pipe that conveys the air and dust from one point to another. A system of ducts form ductwork and is often thought of in relation to heating and cooling systems. It is also used in ventilation systems and attaches  to a dust collector to help move and control the clean and dirty air.


The importance of duct design as it relates to dust collection

While the duct design and layout may seem to be a side note or accessory when installing a dust collection system, it should be considered as one of the most important features of the system. The layout of the duct design directly correlates with how efficiently and effectively a dust collection system can perform.

In a case where the ductwork is designed correctly, the flow of air will be smoother and the blower on the dust collector will operate more efficiently. If the ductwork is sized incorrectly or with improper elbows, the air will have a more difficult path to follow forcing the blower on the dust collection system to be less efficient, thus adversely affecting the performance of the dust collection system.


The Physics of Duct Design 

The size/diameter of the duct work controls the speed at which the air moves, also known as the transport velocity. If your duct is too small, your air will move faster and create additional resistance. More resistance means less airflow. On the other hand, if your duct is too large, your transport velocity will be too slow and dust could settle out of the airstream. Either condition could lead to an inefficient dust collection systems.

Some factors that affect how much resistance there is include added branches, drops, corners and elbows in the design of the ductwork. If this is done improperly, the result will be an inefficient dust collection systems. 

For example, if the ducting needs a corner, a tight 90° turn will create more resistance as opposed to a longer radius elbow. Thus, when possible, a longer radius elbow should be used to minimize the effect on the overall performance. 

Proper sizing is another example of how to optimize duct performance. When adding a branch off the main trunk of the duct work, it is important to reduce the duct size of the branches as this will ensure other collection points are not affected. It will also help to ensure proper transport velocity. There are many ways to control the amount of resistance that ductwork adds to a dust collection system.  


How to ensure the ducting is done correctly

While duct design and ductwork may seem to be a complicated topic, there are expert-level professionals who can use their years of experience and technical expertise to provide a plan to ensure the ducting is done correctly. 

Consult a dust collector manufacturer or affiliated company to correctly size and design the duct to handle the correct air volume. If you are considering a new dust collector or uncertain of your existing dust collectors’ performance, please contact A.C.T. Dust Collectors . We would be happy to share our experience from thousands of applications to get your system operating at optimum efficiency.


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CHoosing the right dust collector

When considering ductwork and design, it is also important that the right dust collector is chosen.

Choosing the right industrial dust collector is an important long-term decision. Not only do dust collectors clear the air, but they also improve employee efficiency, increase employee retention, help ensure a safe working environment and reduce equipment maintenance costs. This means that keeping your facility clean can be good for your bottom line. Dust collector price is often top of mind when selecting a dust collector, but there is so much more to the selection process.

There are many things you should consider when it comes time to buy an industrial dust collector in order to select a system that works effectively to clear the air. A.C.T. Dust Collectors offers the ultimate in air filtration, and our dust collectors are designed specifically for your application.


If your company has a dust, smoke or fume capture need, request a quote today.

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