Importance of Differential Pressure in Optimizing Baghouse Performance

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Differential pressure, or pressure drop, is the difference in pressure in a baghouse from the “dirty-air-side” to the “clean-air-side.” It is a measure of the resistance to airflow between the two chambers of the dust collector. A baghouse’s differential pressure is a key parameter indicating how well your baghouse is operating.

Accurately measuring this pressure is critical for efficient baghouse operations and maximizing baghouse performance. Remember the old adage:

If you can accurately measure it, you can manage it.

Differential pressure changes (e.g. higher or lower readings) are typically an indication of:

  • Physical changes in the condition of the filter bags such blinded bags, bags with holes, leaks or ruptures, or bags that have not been properly installed by trained and certified maintenance professionals.
  • Structural issues in the baghouse such as leaks in welds or joints, poor seals, or holes in ductwork.
  • Problems with the functioning of the cleaning system.

Differential pressure is measured using a variety of gauges, such as Magnehelic® gauges, Photohelic® gauges and U-tube manometers, all of which CPE stocks. These gauges typically measure differential pressure (DP) in units of water gauge (wg).

Magnehelic GaugePhotohelic Gauge








A Magnehelic® pressure gauge measures DP but does not have any electronic control capabilities. The Photohelic® gauge measures the DP and provides the capability for “on-demand cleaning” (also known as Clean-On-Demand) in conjunction with a timer board. Timers are also available with built-in pressure switch and differential pressure readout.

Measurement of DP by a Photohelic gauge can allow you to use high and low set points to control the cleaning cycle. For instance, it can start cleaning only when the DP reaches a high point and it can stop cleaning when the DP reaches a low set point.

On-demand cleaning based on accurate differential pressure measurement has a variety of potential benefits for your baghouse, all of which impact both performance and operating costs. These include:

  • Compressed air savings
  • Longer life on solenoids and diaphragm valves
  • Extending the life of your filter bags
  • Lowering potential emissions

Our trained maintenance professionals can help with troubleshooting issues with your baghouse that pressure readings point to. These include complete baghouse changeouts as well as mechanical and steel repair services for structural leaks, conveying system leaks and other issues which may be contributing to a higher system differential pressure.

Contact us to discuss concerns in your baghouse, explore our range of solutions for accurately measuring differential pressure, and address baghouse problems head-on that may actually be contributing to higher differential pressure.