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Festool CT Dust Extractor Family

Festool Vacuum Comparison

Understanding Festool Dust Extractor Options

See the chart below for complete specifications

More than any other power tool manufacturer, Festool designs dust collection as an integral part of their tools. Festool tools and dust extractors are designed to work in concert for the best performance and a clean job site. Except for the CT 36 AutoClean, Festool dust extractors are full-unit HEPA rated so you know they won't be spewing harmful dust back into your workspace. They also include locking wheels, hose storage (a hose garage in Festool's terms), power cord wrap, automatic tool start, anti-static hose, easy-change filter & "self-cleaning" dust bag, variable speed, and wet vac capability. The performance specs on all the vacs except the CT SYS are pretty similar. All of the floor model vacs can handle general shop cleanup.

Festool Vacuum Buyers Guide

We know it can be confusing to choose among the Festool dust extractor options. We've put together this buying guide to help you understand the different models and make your decision easier. If you still have questions after reading this guide, you can always ask one of our Festool experts via phone or email.

Broadly speaking, Festool dust extractors fit into three categories.

Large Festool Dust Extractors

The CT 26 E, CT 36 E & CT 48 E are the mainstays of the Festool Dust Extractor line. They have plenty of suction and airflow to collect dust from any tool. The hose connects securely to the front of the vacuum and can be used to pull it around without crabbing or tipping over. The broad, deep footprint and large rear wheels make the large dust extractors more stable when rolling over rough surfaces, especially with a stack of Systainers on top. Only large dust dust extractors can be used with the Festool Boom Arm Attachment.

The only differences between these three models are the capacity and height. The CT 26 has a 26 liter (6.9 gallon) capacity. The CT 36 has a 36 liter (9.5 gallon) capacity. (See how this works?) The CT 48 has a 48 liter capacity (12.7 gallons).

Large Festool Dust Extractors - AutoClean

Festool's AutoClean Dust Extractors have an integrated cleaning mechanism that periodically shakes the filter to prevent caking and clogging. This helps the dust extractor operate more efficiently when collecting very fine dust. AutoClean Dust extractors also include a plastic bag liner for easier removal of fine dust without spillage. (The bag comes with a zip tie to seal it when you remove it from the dust extractor.) AutoClean Dust Extractors are full unit HEPA certified.

The CT 36 E AC AutoClean is designed specifically for use with the Festool Planex Drywall Sanders. It comes with a special 36mm x 3.5M anti-static hose that locks into the dust port on the Planex Sander. If you want to use the CT 36 E AC AutoClean with most common Festool tools, you will need to purchase a different hose separately. Like the CT 36 E dust extractor, the CT 36 E AC has a 36 liter (9.5 gallon) capacity.

The CT 48 E AC AutoClean is designed for general use with Festool tools. It comes with a 27/32mm x 3.5M tapered hose. If you want to use the CT 48 E AC AutoClean with the Planex Drywall Sanders, you will need to purchase the special 36mm x 3.5mm Planex hose separately. Like the CT 48 E dust extractor, the CT 48 E AC has a 48 liter (12.7 gallon) capacity.

Small Festool Dust Extractors

The CT MIDI I & CT 15 E pack a lot of performance into a small space so they are great for small shops or crowded jobsites. Both are light enough (under 25 lbs) to carry when they can't be rolled. The MIDI is about 2" taller than the CT 15. They have the same performance and capacity. See the specifications below. They are great for collecting dust from Domino joiners, sanders, and jig saws. If you'll regularly be collecting dust from a high output tool (track saw, planer or miter saw), you may want to consider one of the larger vacs. The hose plugs into a port in the top of the extractor. As result, larger and longer hoses are not as convenient with these extractors.

CT MIDI I Has a built-in hose garage, Systainer dock and Bluetooth tool switching. It comes with a premium 3.5M sleeved anti-static hose.

The CT 15 E is designed for jobsite and shop cleanup at an affordable price. It has a basic anti-static hose (not sleeved)) and you store the hose on top using an elastic strap because there is no hose garage. It includes a crevice tool and an upholstery tool, which are stored inside the top compartment with the cord. The top of the CT 15 is flat and can be used for work support, but you cannot attach a Systainer as you can on other Festool vacs. It includes an outlet and automatic tool switching, but not Bluetooth switch capability.

Ultra Portable Festool Dust Extractor

The CT SYS & CTC SYS I Dust Extractors are unlike any other shop vacuum out there. They're HEPA rated and small enough to fit inside a Systainer case. The hose stores in an open top hose garage Systainer that mounts on top. Clearly it's not as powerful as the larger Festool dust extractors, but it's the most portable of the bunch. For ultimate portability, choose the CTC SYS I CORDLESS Systainer Dust Extractor.

That's all great, but which one should I get?

We think the CT 26 E gives the best value for woodworkers. You get all of the features of the large dust extractors at the best price.

If you'll be using tools that generate a lot of dust, you might consider the CT 36 E or CT 48 E. If you value portability and compactness, consider the CT MIDI I. For unparalleled portability, choose the CTC SYS I.

If you want the most affordable vac and are willing to do without some of the premium features, the CT 15 E is the best choice.

Large Dust Extractor Specifications
  CT 26 E CT 36 E CT 48 E CT 36 AC CT 48 AC
Model CT 26 E CT 36 E CT 48 E CT 36 E AC CT 48 E AC
Suction
Hose
Anti-static
27/32mm x 3.5M
1-1/16" x 11.5'
A-S Planex
36mm x 3.5M
1-7/16" x 11.5'
Anti-static
27/32mm x 3.5M
1-1/16" x 11.5'
Filters One HEPA Cartridge
Disposable
Filter Bag
One Self-Cleaning Bag One Self-Cleaning Bag
+ one plastic liner
Bluetooth
Switching
Optional Upgrade
Container
Capacity
26 liters
6.9 gal
36 liters
9.5 gal
48 liters
12.7 gal
36 liters
9.5 gal
48 liters
12.7 gal
Filter Bag
Capacity
24 liters
6.3 gal
34 liters
8.9 gal
46 liters
12.2 gal
36 liters
9.5 gal
46 liters
12.2 gal
Depth 630mm
24.8"
630mm
24.8"
715mm
28.1"
630mm
24.8"
715mm
28.1"
Width 365mm
14.4"
365mm
14.4"
392mm
15.4"
365mm
14.4"
392mm
15.4"
Height 540mm
21.25"
596mm
23.4"
1005mm
39.5"
596mm
23.4"
1005mm
39.5"
Weight 13 kg
28.7 lbs
14.4 kg
31.8 lbs
16.3 kg
35.9 lbs
15.2 kg
33.5 lbs
16.9 kg
37.3 lbs
Power
Use
350-1200 watts
2.9-10 amps
120 V AC
Cord
Length
7.5M
24.6ft
Max.
Suction
3,900 liters/min
137 CFM
Maximum
Vacuum
24,000 Pa
96" static water lift
Noise Level
Low
62 dBA
Noise Level
High
72 dBA
Metric specifications are binding. Imperial measurements are approximate.
Small Dust Extractor Specifications
  CT SYS CTC SYS I CT Midi CT 15 E
Model CT SYS CTC SYS I CT MIDI I CT 15 E
Suction
Hose
Anti-static
27mm x 3.0M
1-1/16" x 9.85'
Anti-static
27/32mm x 3.5M
1-1/16" x 11.5'
Basic A-S
27/32mm x 3.5M
1-1/16" x 11.5'
Filters One HEPA Cartridge
Disposable
Filter Bag
One Self-Cleaning Bag
Bluetooth
Switching
No Standard No
Container
Capacity
4.5 liters
1.2 gal
15 liters
3.96 gal
Filter Bag
Capacity
3.5 liters
0.9 gal
12.5 liters
3.3 gal
Depth 396mm
15.6"
470mm
18.5"
Width 296mm
11.6"
320mm
13.6"
Height 270mm
10.6"
495mm
19.5"
430mm
17"
Weight 6.9 kg
15.2 lbs
8.8 kg
19.4 lbs
11.3 kg
24.9 lbs
10.8 kg
23.8 lbs
Power
Use
1000 watts
8.3 amps
120 V AC
  350-1200 watts
2.9-10 amps
120 V AC
Cord
Length
5M
16.4ft
n/a 7.5M
24.6ft
Max.
Suction
3,000 liters/min
106 CFM
2,400 liters/min
85 CFM
3,700 liters/min
130 CFM
Maximum
Vacuum
20,000 Pa
80" static water lift
18,000 Pa
72" static water lift
24,000 Pa
96" static water lift
Noise Level
Low
n/a n/a 62 dBA
Noise Level
High
67 dBA 72 dBA
Metric specifications are binding. Imperial measurements are approximate.


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