A dust collector is a system whose purpose is to purify the air released from commercial and industrial processes. What this system does is collect dust and other impurities from the gas or air.

An air collector system is designed in a way that it can handle large volumes of dust loads. This system is made of several parts that work together collectively.

There is a dust filter, a blower, a dust removal system or dust receptacle, and a filter-cleaning system. The major difference between an air purifier and a dust collector is that the earlier uses disposable filters to remove dust.

Top 10 Dust Collectors Comparison Table

PictureNameHorsepowerPriceRating (1-5)
1. BUCKTOOL DC50 Dust Collector1.2 HP$4.3
2. Jet DC-1100VX-CK Dust Collector1.5 HP$$4.6
3. POWERTEC DC1512 Dust Collector1.5 HP$4.6
4. SHOP FOX W1685 Dust Collector1.5 HP$4.4
5. Delta Power Equipment 50-723T2 Dust Collector1 HP$$4.2
6. Laguna Tools MDCPF151101.5 HP$$$4.3
7. Grizzly Industrial G0860 Dust Collector1.5 HP$$4.3
8. Powermatic PM1900TX-CK1 Dust Collector3 HP$$$$5
9. Baileigh DC-2300B Dust Collector3 HP$$$$4
10. Powermatic PM1300TX-BK Dust Collector1.75 HP$$3.8

Factors to Consider Before Buying A Dust Collector

Finding the right dust collector can prove to be a daunting task. If you fail to consider the factors properly, you will have a hard time.

These factors help one in minimizing the options and narrowing down the available items. It helps you in choosing the one with the best specs.

Discussed below are the factors you should consider when purchasing a dust collector.

Portability And Size of the Workshop

The size of the workshop and the number of tools running in it will have an impact on the kind of dust collector you buy.

If multiple tools and equipment are running, you will require a dust collector that handles more equipment to ensure the work is efficiently done.

If a workshop has several tools and equipment fixed, an industrial-sized or a medium-sized collector can be attached to several of these tools.

You should also be aware that larger dust collectors will take up large spaces of the workshop. When deciding on which dust collector to buy, consider the space available at your workshop.

To be precise, portable dust collectors are ideal for workshops that are equipped with handheld tools like belt sanders, orbit sanders, and many more.

Industrial dust collectors and fixed medium-sized collectors are extremely powerful and are ideal for workshop equipment like table saws and planers.

Bag Volume Capacity

Bag capacity is another critical factor to consider while buying a dust collector. Some workshops generate a lot of dust while others emit a sizeable amount.

In case you are doing a lot of grinding, sawing, and sanding, you will need a dust collector that has a bag with huge volume and capacity.

However, if most of the work done in the workshop is assembling, there won’t be a lot of dust involved. For this case, a portable or medium-sized dust collector will work just fine.

The amount of dust generated in a workshop will have an impact on the kind of dust collector you go for.

Filtration Capacity

This is a factor that determines the efficiency of this gadget. It ensures that the process of removing the debris and particles of dust from the air is done with utmost efficiency.

Standard airbag filters will effectively filter particles measuring a diameter of 2.5 microns.

The manufacturers of dust collectors label filters using the HEPA symbol. It is an acronym for high-efficiency particulate air. The filters are considered effective enough to trap smoke, pet dander, and even pollen.

Quality of the Make And Build

Dust collectors are equipment that has to run continuously for the majority of the hours in a day. So when intending to buy a dust collector, you have to look beyond the brand.

You need to take some of your time and go through the reviews. If you find that certain manufacturers make dust collectors that outdo most of the others in durability and efficiency, you should consider them first.

You must understand that a dust collector is a vital investment for the workshop. It has to be of the best build and quality. This is because it will be running for most of the day. It shouldn’t break down or wear out easily.

Go for one that is of a sturdy built, high quality, and solid base with a durable finish. It will be important as it will manage to serve you for an extended period.

Suction Power

This is another factor that you should consider while buying a dust collector. You must make sure that the dust collector system provides sufficient suction power based on the CFM.

You should understand that every foot of pipe will add a significant level of resistance to suction.

What this means is that you need to calculate the amount of static-pressure loss that occurs between the dust collector and your tools. CFM will automatically vary and this will highly depend on the tools that are in your workshop.

Make an effort of checking through the manufacturer’s website for performance curves that will help you get proper suction.

Single or Two-Stage System

This is another factor to consider when buying a dust collector. One thing you should note is that the single-stage system is a little bit cheaper than the two-stage system.

That said, one must also acknowledge that a two-stage system is more effective than a single-stage system.

If you are looking for a dust collector that will give you total filtration, two-stage systems will be the ideal choice.

The great thing about two-stage systems is that they draw air into a separator that effectively filters out large particles in the air ensuring that they do not clog the filters at all.

This ensures that there is a seamless suction process all through.

Top 4 Best Dust Collectors Reviews

1. BUCKTOOL DC50 Dust Collector


  • Horsepower: 1.2 HP
  • Motor Speed: 3450 RPM
  • Air Capacity: 750 CFM
  • Warranty: 1 year

The Bucktool DC50 Dust Collector is user-friendly and comes with an auto-start function that effectively provides a power outlet for your power tools.

This makes it easy for you as you will no longer be required to find a new outlet for the tools.

This saves you from the trouble of having to open and closing it quickly. It features a clasp that is well designed which makes it easy to install the bag. The PET bag is quite soft and will not hurt your hand.

  • It features an auto-start function
  • It features a well-designed clasp that makes the bag installation process quite easy
  • A bit too noisy

2. Jet DC-1100VX-CK Dust Collector


  • Horsepower: 1.5 HP
  • Motor Speed: 3450 RPM
  • Air Capacity: 1100 CFM

The Jet DC-1100VX-CK Dust Collector comes with snap rings which make for rapid insertion and removal of the collection bags. It has four casters for easy maneuverability and portability.

The sound rating is between 70 to 80 decibels which is very reasonable. The sound is quieter than the high pitch sound you find with a large shop vac.

It comes with good instructions that are very clear. However, some steps are very challenging to do by yourself so we recommend that you install this unit with someone else.

This dust collector is well constructed with powerful suction power. It has a 1.5 horsepower motor that is plenty for efficient air movement. It has a collection capacity of 5.3 cubic feet.

  • Heavy-duty unit with solid, quality parts
  • Very good suction
  • Easy to follow instructions
  • Two people is recommended during installation

3. POWERTEC DC1512 Dust Collector


  • Dimensions: 36 x 23 x 22 inches
  • Horsepower: 1.5 HP
  • Motor Speed: 3450 RPM
  • Air Capacity: 1550 CFM

The POWERTEC DC1512 Dust Collector features a 1.5 horsepower that performs at 3450 RPM.

It has two types of collection bags that trap dust particles up to 2.5 microns in size as well as wood chips and debris.

It comes with 4 caster wheels for portability.

To offer the versatility of offering you choices, the dust collector comes only as a base unit. You have to include the accessories such as the collection bag, band clamp, and filter bag.

  • Powerful unit with 1.5 HP
  • Comes with casters for portability
  • You have to buy the accessories separately


4. SHOP FOX W1685 Dust Collector


  • Dimensions: 22.2 x 37 x 22.5 inches
  • Horsepower: 1.5 HP
  • Motor Speed: 3450 RPM
  • Air Capacity: 1280 CFM
  • Warranty: 2 years

The SHOP FOX W1685 Dust Collector comes with a portable base. It has an air suction capacity of 1280 CFM. It comes with a standard bag filtration of 2.5 microns.

At 1.5 horsepower and 3450 RPM, its motor is quite strong and powerful. You can use it with a table saw, band saw, or drill press.

For safety, this dust collector has a switch to protect from unauthorized use which is a plus especially when you are dealing with a powerful unit.

Be careful how you attach the bolts described in the instructions. Some of the steps are not very clear.

  • Powerful unit with 1.5 HP
  • Easy to assemble
  • Portable
  • Instructions could be made clearer

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do Dust Collectors Work?

These systems work by using a simple method of drawing particulates and dust from the air. They do this by using filters. The filters first separate the materials from the air and then blow the cleaned air into the area.

How Much CFM Do I Need For Dust Collection?

The dust collection system you go for should be able to effectively deliver the minimum CFM required on each machine that is connected in your workshop.

To break it down, a CFM of 300 will be an indicator that dust collection needs to be done. This is for particles of dust and scroll saw.

Is a Dust Collector Better Than a Shop Vac?

Well to be able to answer this question, we have to look at the main differences of this equipment. Dust collectors have a wide hose and a low suction while shop vacs use a narrow hose and high suction.

Additionally, dust collectors have at least two stages. These stages allow for the separation of smaller particles and larger particles.

This is very important as it helps in ensuring that the motor isn’t bogged down by these large particles at any point. Dust collectors work effectively for tools such as bench routers, wood planers, and miter saws.

Dust collectors, being stationary, means they will work effectively with stationary power tools that generate lots of debris and dust.

Shop vacs are one stage and will suck both small and sizeable particles from the air leaving it purified. They can work in dry and wet conditions as well.

To separate these two, dust collectors are better since they have two stages and are more efficient than their counterparts.

How is Dust Collector Size Determined?

Dust collection systems are an integral part of any industry. They protect the employees and the environment from harmful particles through air purification.

Any factory must come up with the right size of a dust collector system. Three calculations help you determine the size of your dust collector.

Air volume

It is the air volume that will go through the dust collector for purification. The unit of measure is CFM.

CFM = FPM x Area

Where FPM is the velocity of the air in CFM. The Area is the cross-section of the hood. Approximately, the air velocity ranges from 100-200 feet per minute. Air volume determination will help to determine the ventilation of the dust collection system.

Poor ventilation causes environmental pollution and unsafe working conditions.

Air-to-Cloth Ratio

A baghouse contains filter bags that are the busy bees in the dust collection process. The polluted air is passed through the filter bags and, the dust sticks on the filter media. The amount of air passing through a square foot of filter media is referred to as the air-to-cloth ratio.

A high air-to-cloth ratio decreases the life span of the filter. Low air–to–cloth ratio extends the filter life. Divide the air volume going through the dust collector by the area of the cloth.

Air-to-cloth ratio = CFM / cloth area in sq. ft.

Interstitial Velocity

It is the upward movement of air between the filter bags in the collector. A high interstitial velocity will make the dust re-entrained back in the bag rather than going in the hopper for removal.

When this happens, it may lead to shortened bag life, high pressure drops in the baghouse, poor bag cleaning, and too much use of compressed air. You can make different adjustments to increase space and collection areas for proper interstitial velocity.

How Can the Dust Collector Efficiency be Increased?

Install filter bags correctly. They are the control unit of an airbag. If installed incorrectly, they will affect the entire process. The efficiency will decrease and, the filters will prematurely fail.

Ensure you fold the filters with cuff and flanges. These conditions will prevent bag abrasion and reduces leakages in a big way.

Clean-on-demand system. Dust collection systems are equipped with differential pressure gauges and a control board. The differential pressure gauge scans the difference between dirt air and clean air pressure.

They are connected to a control board with low and high pressure. When the differential pressure rises over the set limit, the airbags need cleaning.

As soon as the cleaning is done, the pulse jet is disengaged. The efficiency of the system is increased by having minimum cleaning cycles and no notable filter wear.

Integrating dust collection system. You can have a different system in one control panel. All the systems are transferred to a central LED controller.

It is then connected to a computer or PLC controller for remote control and activity recording. You can easily sport a fault and act quickly hence improving efficiency.

How do You Attach Tools to a Dust Collector?

A rubber machine cuff is used to attach a hose to a machine. Molder threads are on one end that connects directly to a hose. The other end is a snug that fits a machine extraction port.

Joiners and cuffs are a great way of joining two hose lengths. Rubber cuffs are flexible, like mounting a blast gate on the machine. You can also connect two different ducting into a small cuff.


From the above discussion, it is crystal clear that dust collectors are devices that clean dirt and debris and can be used by hobbyist woodworkers and other professionals.

Workshops that have a lot of machining activities on wood generate a lot of dust that can be harmful to humans.

A dust collector will resolve this problem once and for all and allow you to breathe clean purified air as you continue working. Our top pick is the BUCKTOOL DC50. It is efficient and will make sure the air circulating in the workshop is free of dust and debris at all times.