Are You in the Market for a.. Bath or Chiller?

Learn the most common applications and more in the latest results of our annual baths and chillers survey.

Brought to you by:

By Trevor Henderson

October 2015 Bath and Chiller Survey ResultsWater baths and circulators are used in a variety of settings including industrial and clinical laboratories, academic institutions, government research laboratories, environmental research applications as well as food technology. Despite their maturity as a product category, laboratory baths continue their slow evolution, particularly in the areas of controls and user interface.

Top 7 Questions You Should Ask When Buying a Bath or Chiller

  1. Does the product have any exclusive features? What sets it apart from other vendors’ chillers or baths?
  2. Is it important for your lab that the vendor have ISO 9001 certification?
  3. What is the warranty period? What does it cover?
  4. Are service plans available? If so, is there an on-site option?
  5. Does the unit have the appropriate cooling or heating capacity for the application? Is there enough reserve capacity to account for environmental cooling or heating losses? 6. Does the manufacturer offer the necessary accessories for the application? (Tubing, fluid, adapters, electronic interfaces, etc.)
  6. Does the manufacturer understand the application and provide a thorough explanation of calculations to recommend the proper instrument?

Types of water bath or chiller used by survey respondents:

Circulating water baths 60%
Standard (general purpose) water baths 47%
Shaking water baths 27%
Cooled water baths 23%
Boiling water baths 17%
Waterless bead baths 8%
Stirred water baths 6%
Steaming water baths 2%
Other 3%

Operating temperature ranges of water baths or chillers as reported by survey respondents:

Less than -100 C 2%
-50 C to -100 C 8%
0 C to -50 C 18%
0 C to +50 C 88%
+50 C to +100 C 34%
More than +100 C 4%

Nearly 48% of respondents are engaged in purchasing a new bath or chiller. The reasons for these purchases are as follows:

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

Top 10 Features/Factors Respondents Look for When Purchasing a Water Bath or Chiller:

Durability of Product 83%
Performance of Product 78%
Greater Temperature Uniformity, Stability and Control 75%
Value for Price Paid 69%
Low Maintenance / Easy to Clean 66%
Low Operating Costs 57%
Ease of Use; Ergonomic Operation 56%
Total Cost of Ownership 49%
Size of Water Bath 46%
Digital Temperature Control 45%

For more information on baths and chillers, including useful articles and a list of manufacturers, visit

See results from previous surveys:

Categories: Surveys

Published In

Looking To Hire Magazine Issue Cover
Looking To Hire

Published: October 9, 2015

Cover Story

Looking to Hire

Despite mounting economic, technological, organizational, and personnel challenges, lab managers are under the gun to produce results faster at lower cost—and to hit all their ROI targets.

Featured Articles

Time Management 101

Those of us working long hours in the lab may at the end of the day ask the following questions: Where did the time go? Why didn’t I get more done?