One of the most frustrating things that can happen in a lab is taking freshly prepared samples to an instrument and discover that it is not working.  Proper maintenance of equipment is of the utmost importance in any laboratory. While maintenance is generally one of the most expensive operating costs in a laboratory’s budget, they are simply necessary for proper operation.

Proper maintenance of laboratory equipment is of the utmost importance.

  1. Read the Manual
    Before using any laboratory equipment, you should READ the manual. No need to pour over the manual, but briefly reading the manual is a good way to assess how to use it properly and discover the options you did not know were available. 
  1. Get the Proper Training
    Do not take training for granted.  The best way to learn how to use instruments is to get the proper training.  The easiest way to damage equipment is by u sing it improperly, and the most reliable way to avoid that is by training with experienced personnel. 
  1. Cleaning With the Proper Materials
    Over 80% of labs in the U.S. count paper towels as one of their most-used cleaning supply, it’s important to remember that certain cleaning agents can actually leave a residue behind.
    Paper towels, for example, may deposit microscopic fibers in the tubes and vessels they have wiped, rendering future chemicals less pure than otherwise thought. For chemical-specific laboratories, investing in no-remnant cleaning techniques like ultrasonic cleaners, glassware washers, and specially designed wiping cloths can be well worth it, particularly for research that calls for high-purity chemicals.
  1. Regular Calibration of Equipment
    Periodical calibration of equipment is critical for chemical applications. Calibrated equipment not only ensures accuracy of measurements and testing, but it can also improve safety in the lab when hazardous chemicals are involved. In most labs, regular calibration should be considered as part of a normal maintenance routine and should be carried out by an independent calibration specialist quarterly, if not more often.

  2. Record Keeping and Testing of Processing Equipment
    In chemical labs that deal often with particularly volatile reactions (i.e., pressurized gas, electrical reactions, etc.) regular inspection of operational components is essential. In particular, pressure vessels should be labeled individually, and precise records should be maintained regarding everything from their maximum allowable temperature to burst diagrams. Remember that corrosive and/or hazardous reactors require more frequent inspections and recordings.

  3. Contact Customer Support
    When all else fails and there is a problem you cannot overcome, contact the company that made the instrument to repair it.  This is similar to performing preventative maintenance.  Major malfunctions should be taken care of by professionals who are experience with the instrument. 

There are dozens of maintenance steps specific to any lab. Even the chemicals used in a single experiment can dictate how machinery and glassware should be cleaned, handled, and inspected. 

Well-maintained lab equipment lasts longer, operates more efficiently, and produces more reliable results. Most importantly, it is safer to work with.   As a leader in scientific equipment repair and medical equipment calibration, Scientific Instrument Center works with many corporations, universities and hospitals providing the highest level of laboratory services. 

To learn more about Scientific Instrument Center (SIC) and how we can help you keep your equipment performing to industry codes and regulations  visit us.   Here you can read more about our services or call 800-686-8965 for quick “Same day or Next Morning” on site scientific equipment maintenance services. 

Our skilled staff members understand the nuances of instrument calibration and the manufacturers train our technicians, so any inspections we make mean your equipment is to quality standards.   For more than 30 years, SIC has served businesses that use a wide variety of diagnostic and scientific equipment.   As a leader in Scientific Equipment Reaper and medical device calibrations, we work with many corporations, universities, and hospitals.  We are specialists.

Get a free consultation.  Call (800) 686-8965