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Home / Blog / Strainers : The Difference Between Filters and Strainers

One of the most common questions that people outside of the filtration industry may ask a filtration specialist is what the difference between filters and strainers are. Indeed just browsing the Gulf Coast Filters website a visitor might wonder why we have one section dedicated to filters and another dedicated to strainers. Let’s take a look at differences and similarities between these two important products.

How Filters and Strainers Are Similar

Filters and strainers do have a lot in common. Both products are designed to remove suspended particles from a liquid or gas. They also both deliver similar benefits by protecting downstream equipment and removing impurities or contaminants that might compromise the quality or integrity of the product. Both filters and strainers may be required by law or regulation for safety or environmental reasons, used to improve the efficiency of the system, or simply be required for practical purposes since in many cases the flowstream would be useless without them.

How Filters and Strainers Are Different

The primary difference between filters and strainers is in the size of the particulates they are removing. Filters remove particulates that are smaller than 40 microns (often abbreviated 40 μm). Strainers remove particulates that are larger than 40 microns. A micron is a unit of measurement equivalent to one one-thousandth of a millimeter. In simpler terms the word “strainer” is typically used if the particulate being removed is visible to the naked eye; whereas, if the particulate is too small to see with the naked eye the term “filter” is used.

Gulf Coast Filters is here to help. If you are ever in doubt about whether you need a filter or a strainer our filtration experts are happy to discuss the specifics of your application with you and make sure that you get the right product. We can also advise you on filtration media, maintenance, and other issues related to the performance of your system.

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