May 10, 2017

Imperial Systems Spark Trap installed at customer location


A spark trap (also called a spark arrestor) is a critical part of fire prevention in a dust collection system. They help block sparks before they can start a fire. We hope to answer some of your most frequently asked questions about our spark traps here. You can also watch the video below. If you need more information, please feel free to contact us.

  • How do spark traps work?

Our spark traps have impingement plates that cause turbulence and direct sparks and embers toward the walls of the spark trap, which knocks them around and causes them to lose heat. A screen blocks larger debris from passing through.


Diagram of how the Imperial Spark Arrestor works


  • Why do I need a spark trap?

This is one of the most common questions. If there’s a danger that a spark could travel through your ductwork and ignite combustible dust or other materials, a spark trap may be an important part of your fire prevention system. If you need to know whether a spark trap will work for your application, contact us and we’ll help you find out.


  • What size spark trap do I need?

This depends on the size of your ductwork. We manufacture to fit almost all diameters. Our standard sizes are 6 inches to 40 inches but larger ones are available.


  • How do I connect the spark trap to my ductwork?

To make it easy to install, you can choose from three end types. We manufacture them with a raw end, a flanged end, and a quick connect end for clamping. Larger models can be heavy and may need hangers or other support.


  • Where in the ductwork does a spark trap go?

This is another one of the frequently asked questions. They can be installed vertically or horizontally. For proper functioning, the length of duct between the spark source and the spark trap should be at least one duct diameter, and between the spark arrestor and the dust collector should be at least ten times the duct diameter. A shorter distance will prevent the spark trap from working correctly and is not recommended. If you have a question about the length of ductwork, we suggest that you contact us for assistance.


  • What kind of maintenance does a spark trap need?

Our spark trap comes with a drop-down cleanout door that removes easily. This allows you to clean out debris and dust. There are no moving parts that need to be maintained.


  • Can they be used for high temperature applications?

If the temperature of air going through the spark trap will be higher than 200 degrees F, please contact us with details. There are options for higher temperature applications.


  • Does a spark trap work for every application?

There are some applications where spark traps will not be able to function properly. They do not usually work well for applications with wood chips or sawdust, or applications with sticky or fibrous material. We can help you determine whether a spark trap will work in your system.


  • Is your spark trap guaranteed to stop all sparks?

Another one of our most frequently asked questions. No spark trap is guaranteed to stop all sparks. Our design is as effective as a spark trap can be. A spark trap is an important part of a fire prevention system, but it should not be the only part. Our model meets all NFPA standards. We will take the time to help you decide what equipment will best meet your needs.