Skip to main content

MICROSCOPES: Handling, Storage, Cleaning & Maintenance

27 January 2020

SIC Laboratory Equipment Repair

The microscope is a highly important instrument with a wide range of applications. It allows scientists and students to study a range of microorganisms, cells and structures, playing an integral role in both research and diagnostics.

From mineral samples to animal or plant cells, a microscope is an instrument used to view objects that are too small for the naked eye to see.  Whatever the instrument type, maintaining your laboratory equipment is of paramount importance. Proper care and maintenance of your microscope can extend its life by many years. Routine optical and mechanical maintenance can ensure that your microscope works well for years.

Handle with Care:
Improper handling is a common cause of many problems that occur with microscopes.  When carrying a microscope, hold it by the base and the metal support arm.  The stage on a microscope is the flat plate where the slides are place for observation.  Avoid picking it up by the stage or the eyepiece holder, as this can cause m misalignment.

Refer to the User’s Manual:
Your microscope should be sold with a user’s manual and specialist spanners as required.  Always refer to the manual when making any adjustments to the microscope and use the supplied spanner.  Never use force, inappropriate tools or over-tighten when making adjustments to your microscope, as this will only result in equipment damage.

Keep Clean:
Oil immersion is a technique used to increase the resolving power of a microscope.  Both the objective lens and sample are immersed in a transparent oil of high refractive index so that high magnifications can be achieved while still maintaining good resolution.  It is essential to ensure careful cleaning takes place immediately after using immersion oil and do not use damaging solvents.

Clean Carefully:
Microscope lenses are delicate.  Treat them carefully to avoid any scratches.  Use an aspirator to remove dust.  Moisten special lens paper with distilled water or appropriate cleaning solution.  Rubbing gently in a circular motion will remove any sticky residue.  Never use anything abrasive on microscope lenses.

Take Care of Bulbs:
After using your microscope, turn off the illuminator and wait for it to cool down before putting it away.  Allowing the bulb to cool will extend its life and avoid the unnecessary cost of expensive replacements.  If used constantly on full power, the bulb will overheat and blow.  Remember too, to turn the illuminator off when not in use.

Store Safely:
Ensure you store your microscope in a clean, dry space with good ventilation.  Salt air or damp air can cause damage to equipment overtime.  Expensive, precision equipment should not be stored next to solutions that may leak.  Keep your microscope away from areas with potentially corrosive chemical fumes.  These fumes can destroy lenses or corrode metal parts.

Maintain Your Microscope:
An annual maintenance check of microscopes is always a good idea.  Moving parts should be cleaned and lubricated.  Inspect the power cords and plugs for Safety.

As a leader in scientific equipment repair and medical equipment calibration, Scientific Instrument Center work with many corporations, universities, and hospital providing the highest level of laboratory services. Whether we are providing biosafety cabinet calibration or medical equipment calibration, we keep your equipment performing to industry codes and regulations.

To inquire about our services, you may contact us or give us a call at (614) 771-4700. 
We are here to answer any questions you may have.