How to Build a Dust Collection System

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  March 21, 2022
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For those on a budget, a high-quality dust collection system might not always be an option. That does not mean you should compromise the quality of air in your workshop or store, whether it is big or small. Since you will most likely be spending a lot of time in the room, air purity is an essential factor to consider. You will be happy to know that if you cannot afford a dust collection system, you can build one yourself. It might seem intimidating at first, but surprisingly building your own dust collection system is not a very challenging project. With this, you will not have to worry about dust buildup in the room anytime soon. How-to-Build-a-Dust-Collection-System For people with allergic problems, a dusty room is a dealbreaker. Even if you have no issues with allergies, a dusty room will eventually take its toll on your health. But with our handy and easy-to-follow guidelines, you do not need to expose yourself to that sort of health risk. In this article, we will take a look at a cheap and effective way to build a dust collection system that can elevate the air quality in your room and keep it dust-free.

Things You Need to Build a Dust Collection System

No matter if your shop is big or small, dust management is an inevitable task that you must do. Before we start getting into the steps, you need to gather a few supplies. Do not worry; most of the items on the list are quite easy to get. Here are the things you need to get started on this project.
  • A strong 5 gallon plastic bucket with a tight fitted lid.
  • A 2.5 inch PVC pipe with a 45-degree angle
  • A 2.5 inch PVC pipe with a 90-degree angle
  • A 2.5 inch to 1.75-inch coupler
  • Two hoses
  • Four small screws
  • Industrial-grade adhesive
  • Power drill
  • Hot glue

How to Build a Dust Collection System

With all the necessary supplies at hand, you can start building your dust collection system right away. Make sure the bucket is sturdy, otherwise it might implode when you start your shop vac. You can also use the hose that comes with your shop vac and a spare one if you want. Step 1 For the first step, you would need to attach a hose to the 45-degree PVC. Start by pre-drilling the pipe with four holes around its end for the small screws. Make sure the screws that you get are long enough to thread through the PVC into the hose. You have to attach the hose to the threaded end of the PVC. Then apply the industrial adhesive to the inside of the PVC and place the hose snugly inside it. Make sure the hose fits firmly, and there is no air coming out of the connected end. Next, close it up with the screws ensuring that the hose does not come out.
Step 2 The next step is to attach the lid of the bucket. This is the section powering your dust collector by plugging it into the shop vac. Trace a hole around the top of the lid using the 45-degree PVC. Using the power drill, cut out the top of the lid. Use a cutting knife to get the perfect finishing on the hole. Then all you have to do is glue the PVC attached to the hose in place using hot glue snugly. The key thing to remember is to make it airtight. Make sure you glue both sides to get the best possible connection. Give the glue some time to set in place and check if it is sturdy.
Step 3 Now you need to attach the other hose to the couple, which serves as the intake hose. Make sure your coupler size matches the radius of your hose. Cut the hose in a way that it fits inside the coupler. Use a cutting knife to get a clean cut. While inserting the hose, you can heat it up a bit to make the process easier. Before pushing the hose inside, make sure to apply some glue. It will allow the hose to hold on to the coupler with increased strength. Furthermore, you need to ensure that the couple is not facing the opposite way. If everything is set properly, you can move on to the next step.
Step 4 Your dust collection system should start coming together nicely by now. In this step, you have to create a side intake for the unit. Take the 90-degree PVC and place it against the side of your bucket. Mark out the diameter with a pen or pencil. You will need to cut out this section. Similar to how you created the top hole, use your cutting knife to create a side hole in the bucket. It would account for the cyclone effect in the system. Use hot glue on the cut section and attach the 90-degree hole to the bucket tightly. When the glue dries, make sure everything is set tightly.
Step 5 If you followed along with our guide, you should now have your dust collection system ready to go. Attach the hose from your shop vac to the lid of your unit and the suction hose to the side intake. Fire up the power and test it out. If everything goes well, you should have a functional dust collection system in your hand.
Note: Make sure to clean out your shop vac before turning up the system. If you regularly use your shop vac, chances are, the interior of the unit is dirty. You should give it a thorough clean-up before you start putting it to the test.

Final Thoughts

There you have it, a cheap and easy way to build your own dust collection system. The process we described is not only an affordable option but also an effective way to deal with dust buildup in the workspace. Besides implementing a dust collector you should follow some important tips to keep your workshop neat and clean. We hope you found our guide on how to build a dust collection system informative and helpful. Money should not be an issue that holds you back when you are trying to make the air in your workspace cleaner.

I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.