total cost of ownership

dust collector Total Cost of Ownership

Created mercoledì 19 luglio 2023

When purchasing dust collection systems and filter cartridges, the initial purchase price is just the tip of the iceberg. The true costs – energy, consumables and operations – are lurking below the surface. The good news is that there are ways to reduce these costs over the long term.

purchase price vs. operational costs

When dealing with the costs of operating cartridge-style dust collectors, it’s important to consider the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) rather than just the initial purchase price of the collectors and consumables. There are four major cost contributors: energy required to run the collector, purchase price of filter cartridges and other consumables, maintenance time to service the equipment and filter disposal costs. Our white paper focuses on the areas where the greatest cost savings can be achieved over the long term – using less electricity, using less compressed air and using fewer filter cartridges.

cost contributors of a dust extraction system

operational costs of a dust collector

Dust collectors consume electrical energy the whole time they are running, but the largest portion of the electrical load goes to the fan motor that moves the air through the system. 

  • Reducing fan motor energy usage:
    The fan motor is the component that consumes the most electricity. This consumption is directly proportional to the volume of air the motor is moving through the system. Dust collectors are variable systems. Their resistance to airflow changes over time, according to the dust loaded on the filter cartridges. The fan efficiency is an important factor in relation to the energy consumption of the motor.
    Without any intervention, in the early stages of the filters’ life when the static pressure across them is low, the fan will move more air than needed. This consumes unnecessary energy and also causes air to hit the filters at a high velocity, which reduces filter life. In the late stages of the filters’ life when they are loaded with dust particles, the airflow becomes restricted and the fan has to work harder to keep the airflow high enough to capture the dust particles. At this point, the airflow needs to be adjusted to maintain functionallity, this can be accomplished manually or by installing a Variable Frequency Drive (VFD).
  • Reducing compressed air consumption:
    Producing compressed air is extremely expensive, so pulse cleaning has always been one of the highest operating costs associated with dust collection. For that reason, it is also one of the operating costs with the most potential savings.
    When properly designed, the cleaning system will remove the built-up material from the filter cartridges, reduce the pressure drop across them, reduce the fan energy consumption, and in turn, reduce associated energy costs. Properly designed dust collection systems that take this into consideration will provide more airflow while maintaining a lower pressure drop. Using optimised pleating technology, each filter cartridge contains more usable media than standard filter cartridges, so they can move more air and process more dust. 
    The result is a more thorough cleaning with each pulse, so the airflow remains unrestricted and the pressure drop remains low for a longer period of time. The cleaning system doesn’t have to pulse as often, providing a large savings on compressed air.

Properly designed premium filter cartridges provide a longer filter life than standard filters because they pulse-clean more effectively. This is because premium filters are able to utilise the entire filter area what maintains a consistent airflow and a lower pressure drop compared to standard filters. 

Premium filters also produce other cost savings, which add up significantly over their lifecycle. Quality, high-efficiency filters use less compressed air allow because they don’t need to be cleaned as often and are changed out less frequently, which also reduces maintenance, transportation, downtime and disposal costs.

It takes maintenance personnel time to change out the filter cartridges, so labour costs can be reduced by using a collector that uses fewer filters and uses filters that last longer and perform better between change-outs. Premium filters can last up to twice as long and can handle more airflow per filter while maintaining a lower average pressure drop.

Filters from dust and fume extraction systems are usually classified as hazardous waste as such the dirty filters require proper disposal according to local requirements. The disposal costs can be quite considerable and as such it is beneficial to use a premium filter that might extend filter lifetime, reduce the overall costs for disposal as well as the environmental impact.

calculating dust collectors total cost of ownership

There are many factors beside the initial purchase price of a dust collector which should be considered carefully when determining a dust extraction system. Low enegery costs and consumable costs can make the difference when calculating TCO over the lifetime of a system. Below some examples which should be included in a thorough TCO calculation:

  • How many days will the dust collector operate per year?
  • How many hours will the system operate a day?
  • What is the volume of air required to operate the system?
  • How much does a kilowatt hour cost?
  • What is the fan efficiency for the nominal airflow?

You need support for a proper TCO calculation - our dust collection experts are glad to support you.