The best dust extractor should have a powerful motor that can generate plenty of suction power. Mains-powered dust extractors should come with at least a 1,000 Watt motor and produce at least 50 litres/second of suction power. Cordless dust extractors are more versatile but less powerful and typically generate 20-30 litres/second of suction power.
A filter that can extract the finest dust particles is obviously a very important dust extractor feature – one that can trap a 0.5 micron particle is the standard to aim for.
The length of the hose can make a big difference when you are working with a dust extractor. Hose lengths can vary in size from less than 2 metres on a cordless machine to 3.5 metres on some mains-powered extractors. Check that there is a flexible hose storage solution.
Dust collection bins can also vary a lot in size – from 10 litres on cordless models right up to 50 litres. Clear bins let you know exactly when to empty them.
Having a dust extractor that can deal with both wet and dry debris is obviously a big advantage. Spills and wet dust can be cleaned up in seconds.
If you are going to use a dust extractor in conjunction with a power tool make sure the extractor has a power tool adaptor. More sophisticated dust extractors feature a power take off function, where you can plug your power tool into the extractor, and it automatically turns it on when you’re cutting or sanding.
Don’t forget the accessories. These should include a selection of adaptors, tubes and nozzles, ideally stored “on-board”.
Fine dust particles aren’t just dirty, they can be harmful to your lungs as well. Combat the dust in your shop with the best dust extractor you can afford. Whether you go for a battery powered portable or a large shop vac, I’ve found the best ones available right now. Come and see what I’ve discovered…