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How to pick a magnetic filter for a family house's heating system

Nowadays, magnetic filters are a common part of the heating systems in new family houses. There are several reasons - a relatively inexpensive device with zero operating costs effectively protects your heating system, including all components, from the negative effects of mechanical dirt in the heating liquid as these contaminants damage pumps, boilers, reduce heating performance of your system and shorten its service life.

What is magnetic filtration for?

A lot of solid dirt naturally flows in the heating system, especially magnetite particles, loose metal chips and other small particles.

These contaminants shorten the service life of your heating system and individual components, such as circulation pumps, boilers, control valves or meters. This is because dirt clogs these components, which causes damage over time (such as jammed heating pumps). Dirt also reduces thermal efficiency of the heating system by building up on the walls of pipes and radiators, thus limiting heat exchange. This increases the energy consumption of heating.

Magnetic filters capture dirt in heating systems and are a very effective solution and prevention of the problems described above. 

How do heating magnetic filters work?

Magnetic filters, as their name suggests, are fitted with a strong permanent magnet. It catches all metal particles in the heating circuit. The principle is therefore very simple - heating liquid simply runs into the filter body, where it is forced through the magnetic insert.

Magnetic filtration is almost one hundred percent effective solution against undesirable effects caused by clogging of the heating system with solid particles. By installing this type of filter, all types of mechanical impurities will be captured.

The biggest advantage of magnetic filters is that they only work on the laws of physics - meaning they do not need a power source for operation. You simply install a magnetic filter in your heating system (ideally in front of the circulation pump, which is most susceptible to mechanical damage) and you can start using it immediately, with zero operating costs.

Dirt in the heating fluid reduces heating power and shorten the life of your entire heating system.

How to choose a magnetic filter for heating

Focus mainly on these several criteria:

Basic technical parameters

Basic technical parameters of magnetic filters are the maximum operating pressure and operating temperature. So make sure your selected magnetic filter corresponds to the parameters of your heating system.

Filter dimensions and type of heating connection

The dimensions of the filter body must allow installation in the space available. Find out if the selected filter is installed horizontally or vertically. Connection fittings, which must also correspond in type (external or internal thread, compression fitting, or flange) and dimensions to the threads on your system must be included in the package.

Composition and function

The main part of a magnetic filter is, of course, a cartridge with a magnet catching solid dirt. Some magnetic filters also contain air separators. These remove unwanted air bubbles from the heating liquid, which cause noise and reduce heating efficiency. Air separators can also be installed separately - it is a more efficient but space-consuming solution.

Heating filters are therefore separated into three categories:

  • dirt separators,
  • air separators,
  • combined air and dirt separators.

Flamco heating filter with magnet and air separator.

Filter maintenance

A magnetic filter should be cleaned regularly at least once a year, heavily dirty systems more frequently. Dirt builds up in a specific chamber - the larger the chamber, the longer the required cleaning interval.

Filters should be able to be cleaned during its operation so that you do not have to drain the system. This is possible when the magnetic ring is located outside the container, or the neodymium magnetic rod can be easily unscrewed from inside the filter. If the filter is additionally equipped with a drain valve, you do not even have to disassemble it for cleaning, you simply let the dirt drain away together with the water using the valve.

Material, price and manufacturer

For the best possible filtration results and a long filter life, it is of course necessary to focus on materials and brands.

The cheapest magnetic filters are made of plastic and cost approximately 150 EUR. On the contrary, the highest quality filters by well-known brands (such as Flamco or Caleffi) with the function of magnetic filtration and air separation cost from 200 EUR. The difference in the initial investment is not too big, but high-quality magnetic filters will ensure you with higher filtration efficiency, easier maintenance and longer service life.