What Is a Wire Mesh Filter? (Definition, Benefits, and Cost)
From automotive filters to the filters found in medical devices, the proper filtration of various substances helps make the world go round, This leaves engineers responsible for identifying filter media that will deliver the perfect balance of durability, accuracy, and cost-effectiveness.
Failure to implement an adequate filter media can lead to inconsistent pressure loads in your filter system, increase energy costs, and allow unwanted particles to pass through. This is why you must strive to understand the capabilities of woven wire mesh, particularly when used as a mesh filter.
So, what exactly is a wire mesh filter?
W.S. Tyler has been a prominent manufacturer of wire mesh products for over 150 years and is here to help you better understand if it is suitable for your filtration operation.
To that end, this article will cover:
- What metal mesh is
- What a mesh filter is
- The benefits associated with metal mesh filters
- How much mesh filters cost
What Is Wire Mesh?
Woven wire mesh, or simply wire mesh, is a calculated array of individual metallic wires interlocked together, forming pore openings with an exact size. Prior to the centuries-old weaving process used to fabricate the mesh, specifications, such as the mesh count, wire diameter, weave pattern, layer configuration, and alloy, are all predetermined.
Now, wire mesh can be molded and formed without compromising the integrity of the mesh openings. This allows it to deliver desirable filtration for a wide range of industries.
What Is a Wire Mesh Filter?
Filters are known to be porous materials designed to remove impurities and miscellaneous particles from liquids and gases. In the world of filtration, there are various materials used as filter media, such as metal fiber felt and wedge wire.
Wire mesh filters are a network of metallic wires that forms a pliable filter cloth with precise, rigid pore openings that engineers can customize to accommodate most filter systems. Additionally, because metal mesh filters are one of the most durable filter media available, they can be used in applications, such as sanitary pipe systems, to remove contaminants or in applications, such as nutsche filters, to extract a filter cake.
If you are interested in learning how woven wire mesh compares to other filtration solutions, you may find value in the following articles:
- Metal Fiber Felt vs Woven Wire Mesh Filters (Benefits, Drawbacks, and Cost)
- Comparing Filter Media: Woven Wire VS Wedge Wire
Why Use Wire Mesh?
There are many benefits associated with wire mesh filters. This includes the filter's accuracy, flow rate, durability, and ability to be cleaned.
Let's look into how wire mesh can deliver the listed benefits.
One of the most significant advantages wire mesh has over most filter media used today is its ability to deliver an adequate flow rate. This is achievable as the wire diameter and mesh opening can be customized to perfectly match the contaminants you are filtering out, providing you with an enhanced level of filtration surface area.
This is especially true when a three-dimensional metal mesh filter is used. This is because three-dimensional mesh filters offset two layers of filter cloth, doubling the achievable flow rate.
While alloys such as Alloy 310, Inconel 600, Super duplex, Duplex, Hastelloy C22, and Titanium can be used to construct wire mesh filters, 300 series stainless steel is predominantly used. This helps create a filter that can withstand a wide range of impurities, pressure variations, and extreme temperatures without hindering the filter's accuracy.
In addition, stainless steel is a very pliable material, allowing the filter to be formed to fit your filter system and hold its shape after several uses.
The weaving process used to construct wire mesh filters is heavily monitored from start to finish. As a result, the pore openings of the filter are exact and uniform throughout the filter.
These precise pore opinings ensure that the end product, whether a filtered substance or a filter cake, is consistent and complies with industry standards.
As wire mesh features accurate pore openings, blinding and plugging are significantly reduced. This, combined with the enhanced flow rate, means system operators can clean the metal filter mesh easily.
These two properties allow the wire mesh filter to be backflushed and purged of any unwanted debris with minimal pressure.
What Limitations Are Associated With Wire Mesh Filters?
The most notable limitation associated with wire mesh filters is the limitation as to how much wire mesh can be drawn when being formed into a filter. In fact, there is a ratio that must be followed to ensure the mesh is not drawn deeper than its diameter, damaging the mesh.
So, for example, a direct fuel injection automotive filter with a 5-inch diameter can only have a depth of five inches or less.
It's also important to know that a wide variety of wire mesh weave patterns can't be woven past 5 microns. This can be problematic when working with various gases, as gaseous particles can typically pass through 5-micron screens.
How Much Does a Wire Mesh Filter Cost?
From extruder screen packs to sanitary pipe sock screen gaskets, the price of a wire mesh filter is dependent on the parameters of the filter. This includes the layer configuration, mesh specifications, and amount of fabrication needed to form the desired size and shape of the filter.
Additionally, the quantity of filters being acquired plays a major role in the overall price of a wire mesh filter. This is because most wire mesh filters are made to order, which requires several hours to set up the tooling needed to construct any particular filter.
A good rule of thumb to follow when designing wire mesh filters is higher purchase volumes reduce the overall cost.
Read the following article to learn more about the factors surrounding the cost of a wire mesh filter:
Square Mesh vs Filter Cloth: What Is Right for Me?
Wire mesh filters are a network of metallic wires interlocked together to form precise pore openings that can be used to decontaminate a substance or extract a filter cake. The cleanability, accuracy, flow rate, and durability that wire mesh offers make it stand out when compared to other filter media, such as metal fiber felt and wedge wire.
As you continue to pursue wire mesh filters, it's essential that you understand the two forms wire mesh is available in: square mesh and filter cloth. Knowing the differences between the two mesh variants will help to ensure you achieve efficient filtration.
With over 150 years of wire mesh experience, W.S. Tyler strives to ensure you understand everything you need to know about mesh filters.
Review the following article to gain insight into how square mesh and filter cloth differ:
About Ronnie Brown
Ronnie is the Content Writer for W.S. Tyler and has four years of experience as a professional writer. He strives to expand his knowledge on all things particle analysis and woven wire mesh to leverage his exceptional writing and graphic design skills, creating a one-of-a-kind experience for customers.