Wood Shop Air Filtration System
For many do-it-yourselfers, hobbyists and homeowners with small wood shops, buying a dust collector and dust filtration system falls pretty low on the “must have” list of tool priorities.
I’ve written before on the importance work shop strategies for effective dust control and dust filtration is at the top of that list.
The purpose of and air cleaner is to keep airborne dust in suspension and reduce airborne dust as quickly as possible.
Once I installed my system I noticed immediate results. For example, Cedar dust irritates my sinuses, gets into my lungs and wreaks havoc on my respiratory system for days. Today I was cutting and sanding a slew of Cedar in my work shop and noticed how little visible dust there was on the horizontal surfaces.
The main reason for this is I use a dust collection system and air filter.
Reasons For Dust Filtration
The health effects of long-term exposure to wood dust are the primary reason to control it your workshop. Wood dust can cause allergic reactions and other health effects such as:
- Eye & Skin Irritation
- Respiratory Effects
- Nasal Cancer
- Increased sensitivity to the wood dust
Wood dust becomes a potential health problem when wood particles from sanding and cutting become airborne.
Where to Mount A Workshop Air Cleaner
Awhile back I installed a Delta Filtration System in my shop to combat the airborne dust particles.
I placed it near a side wall approximately 1/3 along a long wall in my shop.
TIP: A good rule of thumb is to mount the unit 7-10 feet above the floor. Mount along the longest wall so the intake is approximately 1/3 the distance from the shorter wall. Mount no further than 4-6 inches from the wall.
The exhaust is the largest determiner of the circulation pattern. You are trying to encourage circulation parallel to the floor/ceiling.
Workshop Air Filter CFMs and Filters
The two most important criteria for an air cleaner are the CFM and the filters. You want a CFM factor that will clean the size of your shop and a filter that removes the particle size that you are concerned about.
The delta dust filtration system I use has a three-pocket inner filter, a heavy-duty pleated outer filter, and an electrostatic pre-filter that work together to trap dust particles larger than one micron.
To determine the size or required air flow, use this formula:
- Volume of your shop (Length x width x Height) times
- Number of air changes per hour (typically 6 – 8)
- Divided by 60
This will give you an answer in Cubic Feet per Minute which is how air cleaners are measured.
Using A Wood Shop Air Filter
I turn it on and leave it on during all cutting and sanding operations. Sometimes I turn on the 4-hour timer and let it run after Im done in the shop.
Using the timer allows the filter to continue cleaning the air after I’ve left the shop, which helps keep the shop clean as well as the rest of the house.
The results are immediately noticeable. The air is cleaner, and there is little to no residual dust on the tool table tops.
Delta Dust Filtration System
The Delta dust filtration system offers a high air flow with three air-cleaning settings–540 CFM, 730 CFM, and 1,200 CFM and a timer that allows the tool to ruin up to four hours. This setting is perfect as it allows me to program the filters time delay feature to shut-off the filtration system up to four hours later.
Using the Delta’s timer allows the filter to continue cleaning the air after I’ve left the shop, which helps keep the shop clean as well as the rest of the house.
This Delta unit was was perfect for my 14 x 28 foot work shop. It is capable of filtering the air in a 20-by-20-foot room 13 to 18 times an hour.
For health reasons install a dust filtration system in your shop. Make your lungs a priority!