Keep your workshop safer and cleaner with this award winning industrial air purifer
When it comes to keeping your shop clean, a dust collector goes a long way to solving that problem. It still needs help though. For keeping your lungs healthy, even the best dust collection systems fall short. Air Purifiers are designed to keep the small particulates out of the air that escapes your dust collector/shop vac, or never enter it, like when you are hand sanding. The General International Ceiling Smart Air Filtration System (model 10-1000) does just what the name implies. It’s designed to hang from your ceiling and filter the air many times every hour. I tested it in my studio to see how it performed.
Table of Contents
- Keep your workshop safer and cleaner with this award winning industrial air purifer
- Installing the General Ceiling Smart Air Filtration System
- General’s Ceiling Smart Air Filtration System Performance
- General 10-1000 Ceiling Air Filtration System Design Notes
- General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System Price
- The Bottom Line
- Three speeds/air flow levels
- Remote control
- Can set a timer so the unit will run up to 12 hours before turning off
- Nice color LCD information display
- Two LED area/work lights underneath the unit
- Easy to change two stage filters
- Easy to hang provided you have someone help you lift it
- “Set and forget” auto sensing feature means you can turn it on and leave it on. Anytime dust, mold, smoke, or pollen levels get too high, the filter turns itself on and starts cleaning the air until levels are safe again
- Auto sensing feature is great but defaults to being off after a power outage. You have to remember to turn it back to AUTO
- LED area lights underneath the unit are not a pleasing color temperature to work under
Installing the General Ceiling Smart Air Filtration System
When the General Ceiling Smart Air Filtration System arrives, it is almost entirely ready to install. Simply unscrew four machine screws on top and replace them with the included eye bolts. Remove the two filters so you can remove two pieces of ethafoam that come shipped inside the unit and then replace the filters. Be sure and note which direction the airflow of the outer filter goes (metal wire supports go on the inside).
Hanging it from the ceiling is relatively straightforward. You will definitely want to make sure you screw into a joist as it weighs 63 lbs. When I was young and dumb I might have hung it by myself. Now I’m smart enough to ask for help. After you run power to it via its roughly 6-foot cord you can fire it up.
General’s Ceiling Smart Air Filtration System Performance
Sawdust – The Primary Mission of This Unit
My studio is what is supposed to my the living room in my house. When I make a mess, the dust gets everywhere. I get it in my kitchen, in my bedroom, even on my blind dog who tracks it in bed and across the furniture. You get the idea.
To avoid the mess, I normally sand outside. This time, I dusted my house prior to testing. I then used my random orbit sander with a dust extractor—inside. I got the usual heavy dust particles around the sander on the workbench and the floor. The dust extractor vacuumed up a lot of it as I went.
That just left the fine particles that would normally be floating around the studio—the kind of dust you see when you turn off the lights and then turn on a flashlight and you suddenly have a lightsaber in your hand.
On High, General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System moves 1068 CFM of air. General International says the air in a room 20-foot by 20-foot by 8-foot is cycled through the air filters 21.2 times per hour in their literature. That is about the size of a two-car garage.
What I know for certain is that after sanding quite a bit, I was not sneezing nor could I taste or smell the sawdust in the air. Even though I have been a woodworker for 30 years, I am allergic to wood dust. Normally I am very sensitive to dust and have to start blowing my nose and start sneezing right away.
Not this time. General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System worked really well and will be a game-changer for me along with all the other dust control measures I have taken. I walked outside and got some fresh air. When I came back in, I could not smell the sawdust, which is when I would normally most notice it.
Smoke and Pollen
General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System not only cleans dust but is also supposed to filter pollen and smoke. I am guessing they meant forest fire smoke, not cigarette smoke since there is no charcoal filter in it. The documentation does not specify. My next test was to invite a friend from work over and have them smoke a cigarette in my house.
The things I do for you readers!
I wanted to test how sensitive the automatic sensor was. When my coworker was about 1/4 of the way through the cigarette, the air filtration system turned itself on High but then went right back off because it almost immediately filtered the entire room. It did this several times over the course of the cigarette. The unit did not get rid of the smell, just the smoke out of the air. I let it run for an hour and while I went to the office. When I came home I could still smell the cigarette. (Incidentally, to get rid of cigarette smoke smell put out pans of white vinegar overnight.)
There is a main on-off switch on the General 10-1000 that you turn on and leave it on. The rest of the functions can be done from the ground with the included remote control. These include turning the unit on and off, setting a timer up to twelve hours, turning the fan on to low-medium-high, turning the lights on, and turning the unit to auto. I find it easiest to turn it to auto and leave it unless I know I am going to be doing a lot of sanding. If I am, then I will turn it on High while I am working.
The noise is not too bad on High. I measured around 70 dB(A) from 6-feet away. Medium is much quieter and hardly noticeable. I have not decided which would be a better choice—leaving this on Medium all day while working and only turn it on High when sanding or simply turning it to Auto. Either way, don’t lose your remote as you can’t control it from the unit!
General 10-1000 Ceiling Air Filtration System Design Notes
There is a good-looking color screen on the exhaust side of the unit. This is the side that the remote operates from as well. It tells you everything you need to know and is legible from standing underneath and about 6-feet away and further.
My biggest complaint with the General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System is that when the power goes off, you have to remember to turn it back to Auto. Power outages happen a lot here in Florida which reset the unit. But what if you don’t know the power went out? You won’t know it until you get a room full of dust. If it were not for that, you could just turn it to auto, set a notification on your calendar to change the filters periodically, and never have to think about it. Then it would be almost perfect.
General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System is designed to hang directly from the ceiling. The unit thoughtfully includes two LED lights to illuminate the area directly below it. The lights are operated by the remote control. They are not super bright, but they are helpful nonetheless. My only complaint is the color temperature of the lights. The lights don’t just lean toward the cool blue side of the spectrum. They are what I call “hospital-make-everyone-as-ugly-as-possible cool blue.” I covered mine with a Soft Amber gel to correct the color and make it match the rest of my lights.
If the lights were a warmer color, a little brighter and the auto sensor would auto turn on after a power outage, this would be the perfect air filter for any small mid-size shop. Still, I don’t know of one better offhand, but I have not tried them all.
General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System Price
General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System sells for around $475. That put it on the higher end of workshop/industrial air filtration units. Its feature set, especially the auto-sensing technology, which won a Wood Magazine Innovate Awards in 2021, sets this the premium model that all other manufacturers will have to beat. The 10-1000 is actually General’s smallest unit. They have two larger units for bigger spaces with the largest one moving 1750 cfm and costing right at $1000.
The Bottom Line
If you don’t like dust in your getting all over your workshop, buy a General International Smart Air Filtration System. Used in combination with collecting dust at the source by using a shop-vac or dust collector and you will dramatically reduce the dust in your shop. In my case, all the dust mitigations measures I have taken have reduced dust in my shop by an estimated 99%.
General’s Ceiling Air Filtration System Specifications
- Model number 10-1000
- 1/5 hp motor
- 4.7 amps
- 5 microns for the outer filter
- 1 microns for the inner filter
- Air flow: High 1068CFM, Medium 710CFM, Low 560CFM
- Sound rating at 3-ft: High 71dB, Medium 68dB, Low 61dB
- Overall dimensions (LxWxH): 30″ x 23 ½ ” x 1 ¾” (762 x 606 x 300mm)
- Weight: 63 1bs (28.7kg)