The range of industrial vacuums available is extensive. How can you find the best device for your specific application? It’s simple: by configuring your vacuum in just ten steps.
1. How heavy is the material to be suctioned?
The fact that metal chips will require a different level of suction than plastic granulate or lint from textile processing is obvious. The weight of the specific material, therefore, determines the required power of the vacuum.
2. Is there a risk of explosion?
Another key initial question is whether explosion protection requirements apply. All Ruwac vacuums are available in both explosive dust and explosive gas protected versions.
3. Are hazardous goods involved?
Is the extracted material hazardous to health or to the environment? The answer to this question will determine which of the three standard filter classes should be used.
For non-critical dusts, class L is the best choice. Health hazardous dusts are extracted with class M filters, and category H filters are used for highly toxic or carcinogenic materials (such as asbestos or dusts from pharmaceutical production).
4. How much extracted material?
Are homoeopathic doses of the extracted material present, or in large quantities? This will determine the size and potentially the type of disposal system used (see points 6 and 7).
5. Continuous running, or intermittent operation?
An AC vacuum cleaner is ideal for classic industrial cleaning applications at the end of a shift or on an as-needed basis. If the cleaning process will take an hour or more, the user should consider a “continuous running” device with AC drive. The third option from Ruwac are vacuum cleaners with directly-driven side channel compressors, which are also more suitable for continuous operation.
6. With or without a pre-separator?
Another question often neglected in practice (or if the user does not receive appropriate advising) is whether it could be beneficial to add a pre-separator. This is always the case, for instance, when vacuuming large quantities of material. Since the pre-separators are mobile like the actual vacuums themselves, they are also just as flexible – the user benefits by having to empty the collecting container less often.
7. Collecting containers: tub, bag, or filter sack?
A wide range of collecting containers are available, and can be narrowed down easily based on a few parameters – such as the quantity of material extracted and the level of health hazard. In most compact or industrial vacuums, the extracted material falls into a tub below the filter. The tub can be lined with a film bag, for instance, a dust filter bag system or a disposal container. Rolling containers may be useful for heavy extracted material. In addition, there are systems available that prevent the operator from coming into contact with the extracted material.
8. Discard or reuse?
Issues related to the circular economy are becoming an ever more important factor when choosing a vacuum cleaner. If the extracted material (such as plastic granulates or powder coating) can be fed back into the process, this will help determine the configuration of the vacuum, in particular the collecting container chosen.
9. Generalist or specialist?
Depending on the vacuum's application, it may be better not to choose from the modular basic range, but to instead select a specialised vacuum designed for a specific use case. Examples include extracting chips, extracting large quantities of lightweight materials, and separating solid and liquid materials.
10. Which accessories?
Cleverly selected accessories (brushes, nozzles, handheld tubes, mouthpieces, etc.) can boost the versatility of the vacuum, ensuring production or the work environment is clean with no residues. When cleaning machinery, in particular, there are lots of options to make vacuuming easier. Check out the accessory range (Link) for more information!
Conclusion: the application is key, and advising helps.
This brief overview clearly shows how many choices users have, even when selecting “normal” industrial vacuum cleaners for general operational cleaning. Ruwac’s recommendation? It's better not to buy an “off the shelf” product or from an (online) catalogue, but to instead choose carefully, and ideally to take advantage of non-binding advising from the Ruwac sales force. If you do, you are most likely to ensure your vacuum can fulfil its (unique) purpose as well as possible. The short time needed to complete a custom configuration is time well spent!