May 20, 2023

Dust Collector vs Vacuum Cleaner

November 13, 2020 by Polly Leave a Comment

I had just bought my new dream home, but one thing was obvious the day that I walked into it was which cleaning system I would need to work smarter and not harder.

After my finances had been depleted by buying a new home, I was not able to hire cleaning help and so I knew I would have to do it by myself.

And I didn’t want it to be time consuming. So, I thought about whether I should buy one of the new models of vacuum cleaners or a dust cleaner. I had to do some research and learned a few things or two about the difference between vacuum cleaners and dust cleaners as it relates to house cleaning.

The Essential Difference

As you may already know, the vacuum cleaner is used exclusively to vacuum deposited dust from different household floor surfaces. Most dust collectors can be used for removing dust from workshop floors as well as power tools.

They are connected to the tool via a suction hose and often have a socket for connecting the power tool. There is also an essential difference in the warning device, which emits an optical or acoustic warning if the volume flow falls below a pre-set value. This signal is intended to alert the user when dust emissions are present.

In comparison to the vacuum cleaner, there is usually no such warning device, only a pressure gauge or LED indicator. Unlike vacuum cleaners, dust collectors have higher horsepower, operating with a more powerful motorized system.

The Shop Fox dust collector, for example, released on the market in February 2009 has a weight of 108 pounds, has a motor operating at about 3,450 revolutions each minute for top performance and a capacity of 1,230 CFM air suction capacity.

No floor space in someone’s home can tolerate such power. Later, we will discuss the types of vacuums available and their essential uses and differences.

The Functionality

Certain types of dust collectors can be used as a vacuum cleaner, but most of them fare better for a woodwork shop than for a home. On top of this, there are different dust categories to consider when choosing between the vacuum cleaner and dust collector.

There are three categories (L, M, and H). These indicate the dust for which the vacuum cleaner or the dust cleaner is suitable, as well as the prescribed occupational exposure limit values.

They also define the degree of separation that the corresponding filter systems must achieve. It is important to make sure you choose the dust category according to the material used.

Clearing the Air

Dust collectors are ideally used in workshops where dust from using power tools can threaten the health of those in that space. There are a bunch of reasons why it is ideal to have the right dust collection tool for a workshop and not a household.

It is especially useful to clear the air and pollution in; especially keeping up with the standards for air emission. As it relates to workshops, the choice would be the fixed dust collector and not the mobile one. These tend to be larger in size and more powerful than the smaller ones.

The fixed dust collector is used in larger workshops where there is more dust to deal with. These would need professional installation at an additional cost. In comparison, vacuum cleaners would not work in the workshop space, not even commercial vacuums.

The Modern Era

The modern era has made the vacuum cleaner an indispensable tool in every home, regardless of its size.

More hygienic than the traditional hard floor broom and more efficient than mechanical carpet and rug brooms, vacuum cleaners have literally been supplanted in many households across the globe over decades.

Invented in the 19th century, the vacuum cleaner became more popular after World War II and has undergone many changes since then, including the appearance of the first ‘bagless’ vacuum cleaners in the late 20th century, soon followed by robotic vacuum cleaners.

The Different Types

Unlike the dust collector, the vacuum cleaner market is huge. It is normal to be a little lost when buying one because there are so many different types.

There are some that are more inexpensive vacuum cleaners, then there are the cordless vacuum cleaners, bagless, robot, silent or even the ones with a broom or dust cleaner. Dust collectors do not have as many variations or choices.

Bagless Vacuums

The introduction of bagless vacuum cleaners has been well received and more and more households are choosing this type of vacuum cleaner.

Offering ease of use and manoeuvrability, the bagless vacuum avoids the hassle of supplying the right bags for filtration, as vacuum bags are rarely standard, and offers substantial savings on both a monetary and ecological level.

Bagless vacuum cleaners are highly effective and remove most of the hair and dust from the environment.As a result, the bagless vacuum is suitable for people with pets or allergies. Dust collectors would not be able to provide the ease that bagless vacuums provide.

Those who want to save consumables and achieve impeccable cleaning will tend to turn to this type of vacuum cleaner rather than the dust collector because it offers better filtration and that is because most models are equipped with multi-cyclone filtration that allows the air to be filtered several times.

Plus, they never lose their suction efficiency, unlike bagged vacuums or small dust collectors, which lose their efficiency as the bag fills up. However, people who are sensitive to noise may feel a bit annoyed with bagless vacuums as the air that undergoes multiple filtrations generates a lot of noise, unless they go for a quiet model.

The same is true for some dust collectors. They are high powered and noisy.

Handheld Vacuums

Handheld vacuum cleaners are extremely useful items in a home. They are versatile. They can clean crumbs under the table, your cat’s hair, as well as the dust in your car and there are even models that suck liquids!

The dust collector cannot do any of those things, especially in such small spaces. It is too big and cannot get under tables nor can it be used to clean dust in your vehicle. Handheld vacuums are practical and do not clutter your kitchen like the dust collector would.

Their small size allows them to be easily stored unlike dust collectors. There are different types of handheld vacuum cleaners, depending on their autonomy, loading time or capacity of their dust container, all of them are essential parameters to check before purchase.


As with most household appliances, there is a wide range of vacuum cleaner models, all with different levels of performance and prices. However, choosing a vacuum cleaner depends on your budget and your essential criteria (silence, power, your budget, and the specific use).

In addition, it is sometimes preferable to spend more than expected on the purchase of a brand vacuum cleaner to benefit from a longer warranty and a device with a longer useful life. However, some cheap vacuum cleaners also offer good value for money.

Although the price of the device is an important criterion, you also must consider the cost of the bags and spare parts. In fact, models compatible with universal bags and parts available online allow for substantial long-term savings.

A vacuum such as the SoniClean Upright Vacuum can cost less than $400 and a vacuum cleaner like the Miele Marin could run you a little over $1,000. A smaller brand dust collector that can manage up to 1,000 CFM (cubic feet per minute) airflow could cost you as low as $100 and as high as $5,000. A brand that can administer up to 10,000 CFM could cost as low as $10,000 and as high as $80,000.

Extremely important

Your safety and your health are extremely important to choosing the best vacuum or dust cleaner. It is always recommended that you choose one that will minimize all health risks.

Whether it is a model of sled, compact, broom, robot, with or without a bag, the vacuum cleaner is today an important investment because it is an essential device in every home. It must be robust, efficient, and practical for its user, who uses it frequently.

These are all good reasons to take the time to select a model that meets our needs. However, if you own a workshop, the dust collector might be a better purchase for you.

Main image by HG-Fotografie from Pixabay

Filed Under: Industry, Promoted Tagged With: cleaner, cleaners, collector, dust, vacuum

I had just bought my new dream home, but one thing was obvious the day that I walked into it was which cleaning system I would need to work smarter and not harder.The Essential DifferenceThe FunctionalityClearing the AirThe Modern EraThe Different TypesBagless VacuumsHandheld VacuumsPricingExtremely important