2014 Lab Balance Survey Results

Choosing the correct balance for your application, or a series of balances that suit all of your application needs, is the first step in good lab weighing practices. If you choose the correct balance, calibrate it regularly, including any time the balance is moved to a new location, and keep it clean, your balance will reward you with many years of accurate operation. 

By Trevor Henderson

Top 6 Questions You Should Ask When Buying a Lab Balance

  1. What is the heaviest sample you will weigh (including container weight) and what is the lightest sample?
  2. What is the required +/- tolerance of your lightest sample?
  3. How many decimal places in grams do you require for the displayed weight?
  4. What type of samples will you be weighing and do you need to take into consideration the size of the weighing surface or the securing of a tare container?
  5. Is on-site service available from a factory-trained service technician?
  6. Do you need to interface the balance to another device such as a computer, printer, bar code reader, etc.?

Types of balances used by survey respondents:

Micro Balance 11%
Analytical Balance 48%
Precision Balance 35%
Other Balance 4%
Ultra-Microbalance 2%

Balance related components used by survey respondents:

Moisture Analyzer 6%
Vibration Isolation Table 11%
Balance Enclosure 28%
Balance Printer 4%
Routine Test Weights 20%
Keyboard 2%
Barcode Scanner 1%
Evaporation Traps 1%
Weighting Table 14%
Software 3%
None of the Above 8%

Nearly 27% of respondents plan on purchasing a new laboratory balance in the next year. The reasons for these purchases are as follows:

Replacement of an aging balance
Addition to existing systems, increase capacity
Setting up a new lab
First time purchase of a balance

Top 10 features/factors respondents look for when purchasing a laboratory balance:

Reliability 93%
Durability 85%
High precision 66%
Low maintenance 64%
Past experience 58%
Easy cleaning 57%
Price 55%
Manufacturer's reputation 49%
Auto calibration 49%
Sealed control panel 38%

Completed Surveys: 304

For more information on lab balances, including useful articles and a list of manufacturers, visit www.labmanager.com/balances 

See the most recent survey results here

Categories: Surveys

Published In

Safe Enough? Magazine Issue Cover
Safe Enough?

Published: June 12, 2014

Cover Story

Safe Enough?

According to a recent OSHA publication, there are more than 500,000 workers employed in laboratories in the United States.1 And as lab managers, you know that laboratories can be potentially dangerous places to work.

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