By Dale Strachan

Business Development Manager

19 July 2022

Industrial carbon filters are used in a variety of industrial, commercial and municipal settings to remove harmful and odorous compounds from contaminated air streams. Carbon filters are most commonly used to remove contaminants such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), sulphides and other odorous gases from your air stream.

If you're looking for effective and economical carbon filter solutions for your business, contact CleanaWater. We are leaders in industrial, municipal and commercial odour treatment in Australia and have a large selection of carbon filters to suit any application. Call us for expert advice on your industrial, commercial or municipal odour removal needs.

Highly-effective odour removal

Industrial carbon filters are designed for use in a variety of industries, including:

  • Food and beverage processing
  • Pharmaceutical manufacturing

  • Chemical manufacturing

  • Waste management

  • Municipal Wastewater

  • Water treatment plants and more

Activated carbon filters for odorous contaminants

How do activated carbon filters work?

carbon filters filtavent 60

The activated carbon in carbon filters is specially selected to suit your odour profile and has a large surface area to which contaminants can adhere. Therefore, when contaminated air passes through the filter, the contaminants are adsorbed (stuck) to the surface of the activated carbon. 

The impurities become trapped on the surface of the particles, and the filtered air is able to pass through. As the impurities build up on the surface of the carbon particles, the filter will eventually become spent and need to be replaced.

What do carbon filters remove from contaminated air?

Common contaminants that are removed by carbon filters include:

  • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)
  • Organic Chemicals
  • Odorous Compounds and Gases
  • Sulphides such as H2S


Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are chemicals released into the air as gases. VOCs are found in various products and processes, including municipal wastewater, food processing and manufacturing, solid waste and processing procedures and any other process that produces an offensive odour.

When VOCs are present in air streams, they can give the surrounding air a foul smell. Carbon filters effectively remove VOCs and other odorous compounds from contaminated air,.ensuring the elimination of complaints and regulatory compliance.  


Another common contaminant that carbon filters can remove from contaminated air is generic odours. Odours can be caused by a variety of things, including VOCs, biological breakdown and bacteria.

If air has an unpleasant smell, it may be due to one of these contaminants or biological processes. Carbon filters effectively remove odours from contaminated air streams by adsorbing the odorous compounds restricting them from releasing to the surrounding atmosphere.

What are the different types of carbon filters?

There are two main types of carbon filters: granular activated carbon (GAC) and carbon cartridge filters.

Granular activated carbon

Also known as a carbon bed or carbon filter, a granular activated carbon filter comprises specially selected granular activated carbon to suit your application, which provides a large surface area for adsorption. Granular activated carbon filters are typically used in municipal wastewater treatment plants, wastewater pump stations and industrial and commercial manufacturing facilities requiring forced extraction and treatment at higher flow rates.

GAC Carbon Cartridge Filters

Carbon cartridge filters are made up of a specially designed casing that houses GAC carbon; this has a smaller surface area for adsorption. A carbon cartridge filter is typically used for applications requiring lower flow rates or passive air filtration. Common applications include sewer pump stations, small processing plants and manufacturing operations. The cartridge-designed systems allow for easy media replacement by simply contacting CleanaWater and requesting replacement cartridges.  

CleanaWater’s Industrial Carbon Filters

CleanaWater is a well-renowned expert in industrial odour removal trusted by companies all across Australia to evaluate and eliminate industrial, commercial and municipal odours.

We’re here to help you understand your industry's rules and regulations and how best to manage your organisation or business’s odorous emissions with highly-efficient carbon filtration solutions that keep the EPA, local councils and your neighbours happy. 

Check out our state-of-the-art range:

FiltaPro forced extraction carbon filters

FiltaPro forced extraction carbon filter

Fan-assisted filters, also known as activated carbon filter systems, are skid-mounted units suitable for use on pump stations, inlet works, wastewater treatment plants, manufacturing facilities, and more. These filters are highly effective in odour removal and are particularly well-suited to eliminating odours from your airstream. All our industrial fan-assisted filters come in a range of sizes to suit your needs and infrastructure. 

FiltaPro’s FE systems are a range of forced extraction carbon filter technology that eliminates gaseous contaminants such as odours, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and other hazardous chemicals.

These systems use high-quality, specially selected activated carbon to adsorb the odorous contaminants, which are extracted from the affected area or facility and forced through the Adsorption Vessel by a powerful blower or extraction fan. This process ensures that the adsorptive capacity of the carbon is used to its fullest potential and that the system can continually operate at peak efficiency.

For use in:

  • Manufacturing
  • Municipal Wastewater
  • Food and Dairy Processing
  • Meat and Livestock
  • Industrial Water Treatment
  • Processing and more

FiltaPro passive carbon filter
FiltaPro passive carbon filter

The FiltaPro Passive Carbon Filter is a cost-effective system that uses activated carbon to adsorb a range of gaseous contaminants, including generic odours, VOCs, sulphides and other odorous gases.

The system does not require a blower or any moving parts, which makes it very easy to install and maintain. As a result, the FiltaPro Passive Carbon Filter is an ideal solution for pump stations or smaller operations requiring lower treated flow rates.

Activated carbon is the safest, most efficient technology for the removal of VOCs, airborne chemicals, gaseous pollutants, and other fumes and odours in industrial, municipal or commercial applications. We specially developed the blend of activated carbon inside our vent filters for its effectiveness in removing H₂S gases, mercaptans and other volatile organic compounds (VOCs). 

For use in:

  • Municipal Wastewater Management
  • Water Treatment Plant & Processing
  • Small manufacturing processes
  • Commercial applications
  • Areas requiring lower treated flow rates
  • Passive filtration

Got an odorous problem we can assist with? Give CleanaWater a call today. We can help you determine what kind of system would work best for your industrial odour control needs.

Dale Strachan

Business Development Manager

Industrial carbon filters are used in a variety of industrial, commercial and municipal settings to remove harmful and odorous compounds from contaminated air streams.

View profile