Bag Filter or Harmsco Hurricane Filter?

When deciding between a bag filter and Harmsco Hurricane filter there are several factors to consider:

Type of Contaminant

Bag filters works well with very large very heavy contaminants as they tend to layer in the bottom of the bag. A good analogy would be throwing trash into a wastebasket; cups, cans, soda bottles and paper all fill from the bottom up.  They do not cling to the side of the bag.

If you have smaller compressible contaminants like baby powder, soot or fine particulate matter you will build a uniform layer quickly coating and plugging the bags entire surface. Imagine plugging your bag filter up and then trying to remove it from the vessel. The liquid is trapped inside because the bag is plugged, it will not drain so you get stuck with a big wet heavy mess.


Surface Area

Compressible contaminants such as sand, silt and sediment require a great deal of surface area. An example of this is the air cleaner in your automobile. Engines use pleated filters with lots of surface area, not bag filters. A cartridge’s superior media content provides greater surface area for the contaminants to collect on.

The industry standard # 2 size bag filter has 4.4 sq. ft. of surface area. A single Hurricane HC/170 cartridge contains 170 sq. ft. of media!  This is a 12” wide strip stretching 17 stories tall!  If you are removing fine contaminants that form a uniform layer, 170 sq. ft. is MUCH better than 4.4 sq. ft.


A bag filter and Hurricane cartridge are comparable in size. A #2 bag measures 7 ½” x 30”, a Hurricane cartridge measures 7 ¾” x 30 ¾”. The housings are also close in size in single round and multiple round configurations.


Flow Rate

A bag filter and Hurricane cartridge are comparable in rated flow capacity. A single 20 micron #2 bag filter is rated at around 150 gpm, a 20 micron Hurricane cartridge is also rated at 150 gpm.



An HC/170 Hurricane cartridge is extremely easy to remove and replace.  Bag filters are easily removed and replaced; unless pugged up (blinded) and full of water!  In this instance you now have a sock full of liquid waste to deal with.

Since bag filters have very little surface area they can plug up quickly which leads to numerous system shut downs and bag replacements. The man hours required to change filters should be considered.


Cost of Ownership

A #2 bag filter has 4.4 sq. ft. of media; with 170 sq. ft. of media the HC/170 Hurricane cartridge contains an incredible 39 Times More Media! But it does not cost 39 times more!

Advantage Hurricane.

Once a bag filter becomes plugged it must be thrown out, a 5 micron and above Hurricane cartridge can be cleaned and reused multiple times…………Advantage Hurricane.

Since the bag filter does not last nearly as long as the Hurricane cartridge you will be removing and replacing bag filters MUCH more often………………………Advantage Hurricane.

What is Involved in Changing Filters

  • The vessel is shutdown, isolated, cleaned and bag or cartridge replaced.
  • The spent filter takes up space in your dumpster.
  • A purchase order is generated and submitted for a new bag or cartridge
  • Freight is charged for transportation from the factory to the end user.
  • The delivery is accepted at your loading dock.
  • Product is placed into inventory.
  • Accounting pays the invoice.

When you consider all of the costs associated with cleaning your fluids we believe Harmsco’s Hurricane systems are a superior choice. Please take 2 minutes to review several other unique benefits that the Hurricane system provides. 

Hurricane filter housings offer more than Double the Performance of any comparable cartridge filter. NSF 61 listed Hurricane filters provide exceptionally long filter runs, reduced maintenance, energy savings and lower filtration costs with our Combination Centrifugal Separator and Cartridge Filter.  Dense particles are separated and discharged in the filters outer chamber, lighter particles are then removed in the inner chamber via High Surface Area cartridge(s) which can be cleaned and reused!  The liquids rotational flow impacts the cartridge’s deep angled pleats creating pleat flutter for exceptional particulate loading. The Hurricanes Up-Flow technology automatically purges air from the vessel ensuring that 100% of the media is used 100% of the time!

Hurricane Filtration Technology Video…