7 Best Dust Collectors - Reviews and Buying Guide

7 Best Dust Collectors – Reviews & Buying Guide

dust collector review

Your health and safety are and should always be your two main concerns when working in the workshop. And this is not only because you are dealing with some dangerous power tools but also because they produce a lot of dust.

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Dust can result in a myriad of health issues, but you can eliminate or at least minimize the risk by investing in a reliable and efficient dust collector.

A dust collector is one of the best investments that you can make for your workshop, and this is regardless of whether you wear dust masks and respirators or not.

Woodworking dust collectors are available in different price ranges and from various manufacturers. And so you need to make sure that you choose the right one for your working area or workshops.

Hopefully, with our reviews of some of the top dust collectors below and description of the crucial points you need to know about these systems, you should be able to pick something that is appropriate for your workshop.

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Product Name

Bag Filter (micron)

Rating

Current Price

Jet DC-1100VX-5M Dust Collector

1. Jet DC 1100VX-5M Dust Collector

5.0

4.6

Shop Fox W1685 Dust Collector

2. Shop Fox W1685 Dust Collector

2.5

4.0

Oneida Air Systems The Dust Deputy

3. Oneida Air Systems The Dust Deputy

​N/A

4.5

Jet Dust Collector

4. Jet JCDC Cyclone Dust Collector

1.0

4.3

Shop Fox W1826 Wall Dust Collector

5. Shop Fox W1826 Wall Dust Collector

2.5

4.1

Powermatic-PM1300TX-CK-Dust-Collector

6. Powermatic PM1300TX-CK Dust Collector

2.0

4.0

Powertec DC5370 Wall Dust Collector

7. Powertec DC5370 Wall Dust Collector

2.5

4.2

#1. Jet DC 1100VX-5M Dust Collector

Editor's Rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Jet DC-1100VX-5M Dust Collector

The Jet DC 1100VX-5M is a single stage dust collector that provides economical and quiet operation. And it comes with dual 4-inch dust ports that will allow for the simultaneous connection of two machines.

But, the vortex cone technology is what makes this an outstanding dust collector as it eliminates filter clogging and hence improving the ease of use and strengthen the overall performance.

This dust collector uses a 5-micron bag filter kit that will capture up to 98% of the 5-micron particles and about 74% of the 1-micron dust particles.

And although this is one of the priciest dust collectors on our reviews it is still relatively inexpensive if you compare it to other high-quality single stage dust collectors in the market.

Pros:

  • Vortex cone technology
  • Quiet single-stage operation
  • No premature filter clogging
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    Quick-connect collection bag
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    Industrial controls for long trouble-free operation

Cons:

  • Not ideal for tiny dust particles

#2. Shop Fox W1685 1.5 HP 1.80 CFM Dust Collector

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Shop Fox W1685 Dust Collector

With an air suction capacity of 1,280 CFM, the Shop Fox W1685 dust collector will get rid of the wood dust from your woodworking projects fast and efficiently.

Like most other high performing dust collectors it runs on 1.5 HP motor, and it has a dual 4-inch port with a Y-fitting that makes it possible to use it for two power tools at a go.

You can use this dust collector as both a central dust collector system or as a mobile unit as it is lightweight enough.

Also, this dust collector uses a steel impeller that will last for way much longer than plastic ones, and it has a powder-coated finish that prevents fading and chipping to increase the lifespan of the machine.

Pros:

  • Steel impeller for long-lasting performance
  • Both a portable and central dust collector
  • Dual 4-inch openings
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    Powder coated finish

Cons:

  • Bottom bag can be a little hard to put on

#3. Oneida Air Systems The Dust Deputy

Editor's Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Oneida Air Systems The Dust Deputy

The Dust Deputy by Oneida Air Systems is the most affordable dust collector on our reviews, but it is still an efficient and highly reliable system that will help keep your workshop dust-free.

It separates up to 99% of materials before it reaches your vacuum and this, in turn, ensures that your filters remain cleaner for longer so that you do not have to keep replacing them.

Also, it will work with both wet and dry vacuum to make it even more convenient. This dust collector comes in a unique design with an anti-static resin cyclone and tapered ports that will connect to most shop vacuums.

And its compact size makes it the best dust collector for small shops and also ideal for use in different worksites.

Waste disposal will also be very easy when using this dust collector as you only need to empty the bucket without ever having to open your vacuum.

Pros:

  • Relatively affordable dust collector
  • Works with both wet and dry vacuums
  • Tapered ports connect to most shop vacuums
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    Easy waste disposal
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    Reduced dust loading onto the filter

Cons:

  • Difficulties in connecting the various hoses

#4. Jet JCDC-1.5 HP Cyclone Dust Collector

Editor's Rating: 4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

Jet Dust Collector

Any woodworker that is looking to get more from their dust collection system should try the Jet JCDC-15. Although it is the priciest unit on our dust collector reviews it is worth every buck you spend on it.

This cyclone dust collector is a highly efficient unit that features a directly mounted filter that will eliminate the inefficiencies that result from bends and rigid-flex hosing.

The two-stage system is more reliable in trapping even the smallest dust particles than the single stage units. And it does this using a pleated material for filtering the fine dust particles. With this dusts collector, you can trap 1-micron dust particles and even smaller ones.

The larger debris is also easy to get rid off when using this dust collector as it also comes with a 20-gallon-drum with some quick release levers and independent casters to make emptying easy.

Pros:

  • Pleated material captures the smallest dust particles
  • Easy to empty heavy-debris 20-gallon tank
  • Directly mounted filters
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    Radio frequency remote control

Cons:

  • Relatively an expensive dust collector

#5. Shop Fox W1826 Wall Dust Collector

Editor's Rating: 4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Shop Fox W1826 Wall Dust Collector

The Shop Fox W1826 wall mounted dust collector is an excellent choice when you do not have a lot of space in the shop as it is just 44 inches long when you inflate the bag.

This dust collector uses a 2.5-micron bag with a capacity of 2 cubic feet and a bottom zipper that makes it easy to empty.

It has a 4-inch intake hole that is large enough to accommodate most power tools, and so it will be handy to have around the workshop as it will help with dust management with most of your regularly used power tools.

Also, the bag has a convenient gauge window that makes it easy to monitor the amount of dirt so that you know when it needs emptying.

Pros:

  • 4-inch intake hole accommodates various power tools
  • Window gauge for monitoring dust level
  • Powder-coated finish
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    ​Bottom zipper bag for easy debris disposal
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    Large capacity 2.5-micron bag

Cons:

  • 1 HP motor is not very powerful

#6. Powermatic PM1300TX-CK Dust Collector

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Powermatic-PM1300TX-CK-Dust-Collector

The Powermatic PM1300EX-CK has the most powerful motor (1.75 HP) on our dust collector reviews, and so you can be sure that it will be very reliable even before you buy it.

This dust collector comes with a remote controlled digital timer that is also programmable to switch the machine off after a specific amount of time (maximum of 99 minutes).

With the turbo cone technology, you can always be sure of improved chip separation and more backpacking efficiency to minimize the frequency of emptying the dust bag.

Powermatic PM1300EX-CK uses canister filter that will offer up to six times more filtering surface area than standard bags.

Pros:

  • All metal duct construction
  • Programmable remote-controlled digital timer
  • Turbo cone technology
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    Canister filter provides a larger filtering surface
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    Powerful 1.75 HP motor

Cons:

  • Remote does not seem very useful

#7. Powertec DC5370 Wall Dust Collector

Editor's Rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Powertec DC5370 Wall Dust Collector

For the woodworkers searching for a reliable and affordable wall dust collector here is one of the best dust collectors for the money.

It comes in a streamlined design that makes it easy to carry around and mount. And it also has a large enough bag that eliminates the need to keep emptying the dirt.

This handy dust bag also has a built-in window that lets you monitor the level of dust to know when you need to empty it and a convenient zipper that will make dumping easy.

The dust collector is among the most affordable on or reviews, but it also has one of the smallest motors. But, if you want to get a compact and highly reliable dust collector for you small workshop this will be an excellent buy for you.

Pros:

  • Compact size is great for small shops
  • Built-in dust bag window for viewing dirt level
  • Handy zipper for easy emptying
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    Streamlined design for convenient portability

Cons:

  • Also runs on a less powerful 1 HP motor

Shop-Vac for Dust Collection

Wet-Dry Shop VAC

As crucial as a dust collector might be for your workshop you might not always have the resources or space to set up the central single or two-stage dust collectors.

However, this does not mean that you should live with dust or rely on a simple dust mask alone because there is still another great option. And this other option will entail using a shop vacuum for dust collection.

With a shop vacuum and a few inexpensive accessories you can set up an efficient dust collection system in no time, and you will not even need any unique skills or tools to do it.

And besides, from being a much cheaper alternative, you also get a portable dust collection system.

Assembling Shop-Vac Dust Collector

When assembling this inexpensive homemade dust collector, you will need some universal adapters since the size of dust ports on power tools varies a lot.

You will also need a hose, and you should preferably go for a smaller 1-1/4 inches one as it is easier to maneuver and also adapts to most power tools easily.

With these accessories, the next step is to connect the hose to your power tools and then to the standard 2-1/2 inches vacuum hose. And with that, your DIY dust collector is ready to use.

Improving Shop-Vac Dust Collector Efficiency

However, there are still a few other things that you can do to improve the efficiency of this setup. And they include making a permanent adapter for the tools that you use frequently.

Doing this saves a lot of time because you will only need to connect the hose anytime you are using the tool.

Also, foot switch or a wireless handled switch can also help to make this shop-vac dust collection system simple to use and more efficient.

Another essential thing to keep in mind when setting up this system is that your choice of shop vacuum also matters and it will determine the effectiveness of this setup in dust management.

Best Shop-Vac for Dust Collection

Best Shop VAC for Dust Collection

With a high performing and reliable shop vacuum like the 5-gallon Shop-Vac 5986000, you are more likely to get rid of most of the dust particles and get a dust collection system that is almost as efficient as the central dust collectors.

The Shop-Vac 5986000 features a stainless steel tank that is tough and robust enough to withstand the pressure of the workshop environment. It has a convenient and easy to reach on/off switch, onboard storage for all the accessories and also a top carry handle to make it easy to move around.

Types of Dust Collectors

single stage vs dual stage dust collector

As you shop for the best woodworking dust collector, you will come across many models from different brands. But, one of the first and most important decisions that you will need to make is what type to buy.

There are many types of dust collectors out there, and their classifications will also depend on the industry and application. However, for woodworking workshops, there are two broad types which as the single stand and dual stage dust collectors

Single Stage Dust Collector

The single stage is the best dust collector for small shops that do not produce large volumes of dust. These dust collectors will come in small and mobile units that are highly portable to make them easy to maneuver around the workshop.

Single stage dust collectors will feature an efficient filtration system, intake ports, and a dust collection bag. And their mechanism of work entails sucking the dust through the impeller or fan and dumping it on the bag.

With most of these dust collectors, you will have to empty the dust bag manually. But, one of their most significant advantages is that you can also attach them to the power tool or machinery directly. And this is considerable merit when working with saws and other power tools that produce a lot of dust.

Dual Stage Dust Collector

When the single stage dust collector is not enough or if you produce more dust than it can handle the next and best alternative is the dual stage dust collectors as it is more efficient.

With the two-stage dust collectors, the motor and impeller will sit at the top of a barrel. The dust from your woodworking job enters into a separator where the larger dust particles and chips settle at the bottom of the drum before getting to the second stage, the filter.

The two-stage design helps to keep the filter clean and free-flowing because the large particles do not get to it and this, in turn, improves the suction.

And so the two stage dust collectors also tend to accommodate better filters than the single stage ones and hence also keep the air cleaner for your lungs.

There are a few types or variations of the two-stage dust collector, but the cyclone is by far the most effective kind.

Cyclones will use a funnel-shaped drum for the separator, and the dust swirls downwards to increase the chances of the larger particles settling down before the rest moves to the filter stage.

If you can afford the cyclone, you will have one of the best dust collection systems for your workshop.

How to Buy the Best Dust Collectors

How to buy Dust Collector

There is more to choosing the best duct collector than just going for the most famous model or brand. Also, what works well on a friend’s workshop might not necessarily be ideal for yours.

And although there are many ways to determine the right system for your workshop you should always start by considering the following factors when shopping for a dust collector.

Shop Size

While the size of your workshops seems like an obvious factor to consider, one cannot overemphasize this point. And when it comes to workshop size it is not just about the amount of space that the dust collector takes up but also its ability to handle the dust production of the shop.

The larger the workshop, the better the dust collector should be as this is the only way to ensure that it covers the shop adequately.

Volume of Dust

The quantity of dust is another point that might sound obvious, but it is still one of the most crucial factors to make when shopping for a dust collector. And the volume of dust that you generate depends on the tools and machinery you use often.

If most of your projects involve a lot of sawing and sanding, there will be a lot of dust in the workshop. Hence you might need the two-stage cyclone dust collector as a small single stage system might not be sufficient.

Fixed vs. Portable Dust Collectors

Portable dust collectors are the best for small and medium-sized workshops as you can move them around the shop or from one tool to the other quickly. They also come in various sizes and price ranges to make it easy to get something ideal for your working areas.

Fixed dust collectors, on the other hand, tend to be large and in most cases also more powerful, and they are suitable for large workshops that produce a lot of dust. However, they might require some professional installation which means extra cost.

Motor Power

The size of the motor on the dust collector determines its performance, and so it is also a vital factor to consider when shopping. The more powerful it is, the better as it makes the dust collector more powerful and efficient.

However, those with 1.5 HP motors seem to be the most popular for both professional woodworkers and hobbyists.

Conclusion

Your health and safety should always come first, and so you should always find ways to minimize any risks to both when setting up your workshop.

While your choice of tools and machinery has a role to play in this, the efficiency and reliability of the dust collector system will always be critical.

Choosing a good dust collector for your workshop should not be hard once you identify your needs. And with our dust collector reviews above you should have an idea of what to get.

Read More: Delta 50-760 Dust Collector

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