Reviews

Best Dust Collectors: Keep Your Air Clean and Your Lungs Healthy

Inhale cleaner air by eliminating dust particles.

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BY Noelle Talmon / LAST UPDATED ON June 27, 2021

If you're working on a project that produces a lot of dust, it can be tough on your respiratory system. When you're exposed to high dust levels during a prolonged period, it can be particularly damaging. Dust is produced when you work with wood, metal, and other elements in your garage or shop. In addition to health complications, it can create a messy environment, which can be a hassle to clean.

 

The good news is that you can use a dust collector to safeguard your health and keep your surroundings from getting too messy. They are available in a variety of forms, from an entire machine to a simple dust cover. Our buying guide will help you decide which type and brand are best for your needs.

Best Overall
Shop Fox W1727 Dust Collector
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Summary
Summary

This motor-operated dust collector has a filter that removes up to 2.6 microns of dust in the air. The dust settles in a 15-gallon collection bag.

Pros
Pros
  • Fairly easy to assemble
  • Compact and portable
  • Operates quietly
  • Features rust-resistant, powder-coated frames
  • Neatly detaches from the machine
Cons
Cons
  • Bag isn’t designed for collecting metal dust
  • A bit on the expensive side
  • Somewhat heavy
Best Overall
Shop Fox W1727 Dust Collector
Best Value
Black + Decker Dustbuster Handheld Vacuum
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Summary
Summary

Technically not a "dust collector," this cordless, handheld vacuum is an affordable option that's good for around-the-house use, with a translucent dust bowl that has a capacity of 11 ounces. 

Pros
Pros
  • Effectively collects small and large particles
  • Can be used to clean dust and pet fur on car seats
  • Comes with a crevice tool that helps to clean tight, hard-to-reach areas 
Cons
Cons
  • Too small for industrial use
  • Comparatively low suction power
Best Value
Black + Decker Dustbuster Handheld Vacuum
Honorable Mention
WEN Air Filtration System
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Summary
Summary

This air filtration system works by circulating the air in the room at a rate of at least 300 cubic feet per minute to rid it of about 99 percent of airborne contaminants.

Pros
Pros
  • Comes with a remote control for ease-of-use
  • Can be programmed to shut off after a specific period
  • Air circulation speed can be increased or reduced
  • Backed by a two-year warranty
Cons
Cons
  • Remote control has to be pointed directly at the receiver 
  • Might ship with some quality issues such as a loose wire
Honorable Mention
WEN Air Filtration System
Dust Collectors
Amazon

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Our reviews are driven by a combination of hands-on testing, expert input, “wisdom of the crowd” assessments from actual buyers, and our own expertise. We always aim to offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.

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Benefits of Dust Collectors

  • Prevent respiratory problems. If you spend most of your day woodworking, you need to find an efficient way to get rid of the sawdust to keep it from getting in your airways. Wood dust can cause asthma, chronic bronchitis, and other respiratory problems. 
  • Improve air quality. Dust collectors can also be used in homes or offices to help keep the air clean. Fine dust particles can be easily trapped, which also helps to keep the furniture clean. 
  • Keep your workshop clean. If you leave large wood chips and fine wood dust to settle on your workbench, you may have a “mountain” of dust piling up on or under your worktable. Having an efficient dust collector is the best way to keep that from happening. 
  • Makes it easier to use a vacuum cleaner. Large vacuum cleaners aren’t the best for collecting fine dust particles. They tend to clog up, and you have to stop to unclog them. On the other hand, dust collectors are better at collecting dust from surfaces or from the ambient air, and later, you can use a vacuum to collect the larger particles without experiencing clogging issues.

Types of Dust Collectors

Single-Stage Filtration System

Dust collectors with single-stage technology feature a removable filter that catches airborne dust particles. These types of dust collectors don't typically have a strong motor and are generally best for use in smaller spaces. A couple of downsides are that they can easily clog, and you need to frequently change the filter for the best results.

Two-Stage Filtration System 

This type of filtration system captures both small and big particles. The first stage includes a filter that's designed to trap large-sized debris. When the air moves to stage two, a second filter that is more tightly constructed stops much smaller particles—it can trap debris that is 2.5 microns in size. Dust collectors with two-stage filtration systems are typically pricier and common in industrial areas.

Top Brands

Black+Decker

Alonzo G. Decker founded Black + Decker in 1910, and the company is located in Towson, Md. This well-known brand makes a ton of power tools and accessories for various industries, including construction and automotive. Its products are also great for woodworking. The Black + Decker Dustbuster Handheld Vacuum is a great cordless dust collector.

Bosch 

Robert Bosch created Bosch in Germany in 1886. The company produces a range of products, including automotive components, power tools, and appliances. It also has several brands under its control, including Dremel. We recommend the Bosch 9 Gallon Dust Extractor.

WEN

WEN, which is based in Charlotte, North Carolina, was founded in 1951 by a man named Nick Anton. It's known for its reliable power tools and was the first company to use random orbital technology in its products. You can purchase a wide variety of WEN items online and in stores, including dust collectors, chainsaws, rotary tools, and generators. One popular option is the WEN 7.4-Amp Rolling Dust Collector.

Makita 

Makita is based in California and Japan and has been producing power tools for over a century. The company is known for its motor-driven tools, including dust extractors and grinders, sanders, saws, and hammers. Check out the Makita Cordless Dust Extractor.

Dust Collector Pricing

  • Under $100: Budget this much for a small-scale dust collector used in a small workshop or garage with limited space. The dust collectors here include handheld vacuums, nail dust extractors for nail salons, and single-stage air filtration systems. 
  • $100 to $150: This is the price range to expect if you are looking for a heavy-duty dust cleaner for a larger room. Most of the dust collectors here have powerful motors that increase airflow speed and have larger dust collection bags than the lower-priced options. You can also find a compact, dual-stage dust extractor with replaceable dust filters. 
  • $150 and up: Expect to spend this much on a commercial-grade dust extractor or a heavy-duty dust filtration system that comes with a large dust collection bucket or bag. Most use dual-stage filtration technology to help get rid of the finest particles of dust. The higher-priced options come with extra filters or dust collection bags. 

Key Features

Airflow 

It's important to check the cubic feet per minute (CFM) rating of the dust collector. The CFM is a measure of the volume of air it can clean within a specific period. This information will come in handy when trying to find the best dust collector for your trade. Most portable dust collectors deliver about 650 CFM. If you need an efficient air cleaning system for a home workshop, then choose a machine that’s over 700 CFM. For commercial workshops, choose machines with a 1,100 CFM rating and above.

Filter Quality 

Not all dust collectors come with the same type of filters. Some filters can only trap large particles, leaving fine dust to float around your room. Your best bet would be to get a machine that has a finely woven filter, which can trap dust particles that are smaller than five microns. This way, both small and large particles of dust won’t get into your eyes or airways.  

Size 

Dust collectors come in a variety of sizes. If you plan to work in an industrial environment, you need a machine that can handle heavy-duty dust collection to be on the larger size. However, a small garage may only require a compact dust collector that isn't as powerful and takes up less space.

Other Considerations

  • Portable vs. Fixed. Portable dust collectors can be easily transported and are often used in small workspaces. Fixed dust collectors are typically large and are mostly used in large industries aware of how much dust they produce. They are fixed at strategic points and programmed to collect dust at specific intervals. 
  • Noise. Dust collectors and extractors can be noisy depending on their size and purpose. If loud noises bother you, look for a machine that is on the quieter side. One way to determine how much noise a dust collector produces is by looking at the decibel rating: those with less than 50 decibels are easier to tolerate.  
  • Type of Particles. Not all dust collectors are designed to collect all kinds of dust particles. Some dust types, such as metal dust, can stick on the dust collecting unit, and it can be challenging to get rid of it. Be sure to get the right dust collector for the type of dust you produce.

Best Dust Collectors Reviews & Recommendations 2021

Best Overall
Shop Fox W1727 Dust Collector

If you're looking for a powerful way to remove dust from the air, the Shop Fox W1727 Dust Collector is a popular option. Ideal for situations where you do a lot of woodworking, this tool quickly cleans your air. It features a motor capable of producing 1 horsepower, so it won't be too loud, but it's still effective. The wired design lets you attach it to any standard wall outlet. It sucks in the air quickly and uses a in-built filtration system to catch dust as small as two-and-a-half microns. This means that even the finest particulate gets caught. 


After it’s done working, the replaceable bag catches the dust. From there, you remove the bag and dispose of it accordingly. The tight seal prevents leaks while improving efficiency. While it may be heavy and not suitable for collecting metal dust, it’s portable and takes up less space in your workshop than a shop vac.

Best Value
Black + Decker Dustbuster Handheld Vacuum

Dust particles, pet fur, and other types of dirt are easy to remove with this hand vacuum. It's a cordless vacuum that runs on a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. The battery can last for about an hour of continuous use, and it comes with a wall-mountable charger. It also has a small and lightweight profile to allow for easy one-handed operation. The unit comes with an 11-ounce, bagless dust bowl that can be removed and cleaned. Also, the dust bowl is translucent, so that you can easily tell when it's time to empty it. 


While not ideal for heavy-duty cleaning, the built-in crevice tool makes it easy to clean tight spaces or hard-to-reach areas. Also, it's affordable and works efficiently, which gives you great value for your money.

Honorable Mention
WEN Air Filtration System

If you are looking for an easy way to eliminate nearly all airborne contaminants, consider using WEN's air filtration system. It's a remote-controlled system that removes contaminants by circulating the air in a room at least seven times in an hour. With the remote's help, this machine can be programmed to operate at three different speeds, including 300, 350, or 400 cubic feet per minute. 


In addition, the unit is designed with two replaceable filters: a one-micron filter (fine dust) and a five-micron filter (larger particles). If you need it to work for only a few hours, you can program it to shut down after the time has lapsed. While the remote needs to be pointed directly at the machine for it to work, you can use it even if you are 26 feet away.

Honorable Mention
Dust Deputy Anti-Static Cyclone Separator

If you want a way to preserve your home’s air quality without overspending then you should check out the Dust Deputy Anti-Static Cyclone Separator. It's made in America and efficiently reduces the dust in your home or garage’s air.  Quick to assemble, you can set it up in a matter of minutes. In between uses, the machine requires little maintenance. While it doesn’t have a built-in motor, you can attach it to any standard shop vac. 


The tight seal creates optimal suction, and the main pipe catches dust through the vacuum’s pull. This draws the dust inwards, where gravity compels it downwards into a catch of your choice. Especially appealing to those who like to DIY their projects, this dust collector's versatility adds a lot of value.

Best Collection Bag
Bosch 9 Gallon Dust Extractor

If you have a big job in the works, the Bosch 9 Gallon Dust Extractor is a great option. One of the best features of this dust collector is its automatic filter cleaning technology. The machine cleans its filter every 15 seconds, which helps maximize suction power—the HEPA filter traps more than 99 percent of particles that are 0.3 microns or bigger.


It also includes a fleece filter bag and is OSHA compliant. The dust extractor has excellent suction power with a maximum of 150 cubic feet of air per minute rate (CFM) and a 97-inch static water lift. Another neat feature is that you can use a power tool to power the vacuum on and off. Plus, the Power Broker dial is designed to match the application and suction force.


The biggest downside with this dust extractor is its price. If you don't need a heavy-duty machine, you may want to look elsewhere for a more affordable product.

Most Compact
Markartt Nail Dust Collector

The Markartt Nail Dust Collector is a great way to keep your air clean. It works in both a residential and commercial setting. The compact structure means you can take it with you wherever you go. It touts a simple design. Just press the button to activate the vacuum. It powers strong suction that draws in the dust during nail removal and filing. It’s quiet enough to enable conversations yet tough enough to make your job easier.


Instead of featuring a bag, the device has a filter that you can use multiple times. Dust collects at the base, enabling you to empty it in between uses. The tough, steel structure adds durability. While it may not be a heavy-duty air cleaner, its compact design is a great addition to any small workspace.

Most Versatile
Rousseau 5000 Dust Solution For Miter Saws

If you spend a lot of time in the shop, the Rousseau 5000 Dust Solution for Miter Saws can help keep dust under control. It’s designed to go on the side of your miter saw. Unlike other options that feature a tight seal and draw the dust in, this bag catches ambient dust. It’s made out of high-grade nylon that prevents dust from slipping out in addition to catching small particles. 


In between uses, fold down the bag and place it into the included container. It is a wide catch, which is easy to place. The large size also means you don’t have to worry about compatibility. You can use this dust collector on the side of most tabletop tools. While it’s a bit expensive, its versatility and effectiveness make this collector a solid choice.

Honorable Mention
Makita Cordless Dust Extractor

You can trap up to 99.97 percent of particulates on surfaces with Makita’s cordless dust vacuum with the help of an efficient HEPA filter that can capture particles that are three microns and larger. The unit is designed with a brushless motor that helps it run cool and efficiently throughout its service life. Aside from that, the motor delivers a suction rate of 57 cubic feet per minute. 


It runs on a rechargeable, 18-volt, lithium-ion battery that can run for up to an hour on a single charge. It also has an LED battery indicator that shows you the battery level. While it doesn’t come with wheels, the unit weighs only 10.1 pounds and comes with a carry handle for easy transportation.

Honorable Mention
Powertec Dust Collector

If you are looking for a small-scale dust collector that you can mount on the wall or hang on a bench, consider Powertec’s dust collector. It comes with wall-mounting brackets and features a compact profile so that you can easily hang it on a wall. The unit has a reusable filter bag that can remove 2.5-micron particles, and the bag has a translucent window so that you can see the dust level. 


At the bottom of the bag is a zipper for easy dust disposal, and around its neck is a drawstring that you can hold on to as you connect it to the filter. The filter is powered with a one horsepower motor with a 537 cubic feet per minute air suction capacity. Though this model leans on the expensive side, it’s a great purchase for keeping your workshop dust-free.

Honorable Mention
Shop Fox Dust Collector

Shop Fox has a wall-mounted dust collector that comes with a wall bracket for a quick and neat set up. The bag can hold 1.5 cubic feet of debris and has a zipper at the bottom to make it easier to dispose of the dust. It's also about 46 inches tall when fully inflated, showing that it can hold a large volume of dust. The bag's side has a transparent strip that allows you to see when the bag is full. 


At the top of the dust collection bag is a powder-coated canister that houses a filtering medium with a 2.5-micron filter grade. This makes it ideal for improving the quality of air in-home projects. The 537 CFM air suction capacity is somewhat low, but it makes up for it with a powerful 1 horsepower motor that speeds up the airflow.

Best Overall
Rikon-63-110R Dust Extractor

If you're looking for a compact and portable dust collector, the Rikon-63-110R Dust Extractor is a good option. This canister-type vacuum is just 15 by 15 by 25.25 inches, so it's easy to move from machine to machine. The device includes a top carry handle for convenience. It also features a 1.5-horsepower motor with a 12-gallon capacity.


Even though this dust extractor is on the small side, it packs a good amount of power. The power switch is conveniently located on the top, and it comes with a 6.5-inch hose, two hose clamps, hose connector fittings, a filter cartridge, and replacement paper filters. It operates at 142 CFM and is wired for use with three-wire/120-volt machines.


Unfortunately, it's designed for dry use only—you can't use this dust collector to suck up water or other types of liquids, which limits its use. It's also not a standalone product; you need a machine to operate it.

Honorable Mention
Pulse-Bac 550 Dust Extractor Vacuum

Big jobs require a premium product like the Pulse-Bac 550 Dust Extractor Vacuum. It includes single-stage HEPA filtration and collects 99.97 percent of debris at 0.3-micron filtration. It features automatic self-cleaning technology, so the filter stays clean and consistently maintains its suction power. Simply turn the unit on, and it does the work without a blower, compressor, etc.


This machine efficiently and easily traps dust and operates at 150 CFM. It includes an eight-gallon steel tank and can manage debris caused by grinders, sanders, chop saws, etc. It is constructed of powder-coated steel and ABS and comes with a 1.5 by 15-inch locking inlet and hose.


However, if you don't need an industrial dust extractor, then this item will be overkill. It's also on the pricey side, so make sure you will utilize its features before investing.

Honorable Mention
WEN 7.4-Amp Rolling Dust Collector

The WEN 7.4-Amp Rolling Dust Collector allows you to keep sawdust at bay. This 12-gallon dust collector features a 7.4-amp inductor motor that is maintenance-free and not very loud. It includes a 9-inch impeller and moves over 600 cubic feet of air per minute. The machine has a 4-inch dust port inlet that's designed to fit your woodworking tools.


It's easy to store and move due to its swivel casters and carrying handle. Alternatively, you can mount it on the wall of your shop using its built-in wall mount. The unit comes with a 15-gallon zippered collection bag, and it measures 43.3 by 17.7 by 20.1 inches. A two-year warranty also backs it should you experience any issues.


Unfortunately, the dust collector is a little heavy at 42.9 pounds. Even though you can mount it on a wall, you must do so properly because it weighs so much.

Tips

  • Keep your dust collector clean by emptying it frequently, or at the end of the day, even if it’s not full. Leaving dirt to pile in the collection bag for weeks or months can stretch out the fabric and make it weak. 
  • If you have an efficient dust collector that doesn’t clog up easily, it’s better to attach it on your workbench instead of mounting it on a wall. It will absorb more dust at a lower position and prevent it from getting into the surroundings. 
  • If you are using a dust extractor, clean out the filters at the end of the day to maintain their efficiency and replace them every few weeks. 
  • Even if you have a dust collector, you should always wear a respirator and safety glasses to protect yourself from large dust particles.  

FAQs

Q. What is a dust collector used for?

A dust collector is a device used for trapping large and small dust particles in the ambient air. It does so by circulating the air in the room, while the built-in filters trap dust and deposit it in a removable dust collection bag or container. 

Q. Which dust collector is the best?

Most of the dust collectors on our list are some of the best for the roles that they play. The Shop Fox W1727 Dust Collector, however, is the overall best because it's suitable for all types of workshops regardless of the kind of power tools you use. 

Q. How do you make a homemade dust collector?

Several online tutorials will give you a step-by-step guide on making your own dust collector. You will need a dust collection bucket or bag for most of these exercises, a powerful motor, reusable filters, and a suction tube. 

Q. How much is a dust collector?

Dust collectors are typically priced between $30 and $250. The lower-priced options can be used at home, while the higher-priced dust collectors are best used in a professional setting since they are designed to collect more dust by filtering a larger mass of air. 

Final Thoughts

We chose the Shop Fox W1727 Dust Collector as our top pick because it’s reliable in trapping both small and large dust particles, and runs quietly. For a more budget-friendly option,, consider the Black + Decker Dustbuster Handheld Vacuum.