What You Need to Know About Stirrers and Mixers

Find out readers’ most frequently encountered issues and more from the latest stirrers and mixers survey results

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Magnetic stirrers are a popular type of laboratory stirrer that use a rotating magnetic field to cause a stirrer bar to rotate within the solution. These stirrers are often combined with a hotplate and are ideal for small volumes of non-viscous liquids and for situations in which a reaction must take place in a closed vessel or system. The overhead stirrer, however, is more suitable for larger volumes and more viscous solutions, but can be less convenient and more time-consuming to set up.

Top 10 Questions You Should Ask When Buying a Stirrer or Mixer

  1. What applications are you using the stirrer or mixer for? What result do you want to accomplish?
  2. What are the maximum volume and the maximum viscosity that you can use the stirrer for?
  3. Which stirring element is best suited to your application?
  4. What are the features and specs of the stirrers or mixers available?
  5. What level of accuracy does the digital speed indicator have?
  6. What type of motor is used in the stirrer or mixer?
  7. Can you determine the viscosity with the torque trend measurement?
  8. Have you purchased everything you need to start mixing? Sometimes stirrers and mixers are sold as kits, while sometimes all or some of the accessories must be purchased separately.
  9. Does the manufacturing company offer application and technical support over the phone?
  10. What warranty and delivery options are available? How quickly will the new purchase arrive?

Types of stirrer(s) used by survey respondents:

Magnetic Stirrer 82%
Hot Plate Stirrer 82%
Overhead Stirrer 24%
Other 4%

Stirrer problems reported by survey respondents:

Stirrer doesn't maintain speed 41%
Stirrer can't handle high viscosity fluid 35%
Stirrer can't handle large volumes 26%
Drive motor overheats 15%
Impeller frequently becomes jammed 6%
Other 15%

Nearly 49% of respondents are engaged in purchasing a new stirrer or mixer. The reasons for these purchases are as follows:

Replacement of aging system
58%
Addition to existing systems, increase capacity
31%
First time purchase
4%
Setting up a new lab
2%
Other
4%

Top 10 Features/Factors Respondents Look for When Purchasing a Stirrer or Mixer:

Durability of product 86%
Low maintenance - Easy to use and clean 80%
Value for price paid 71%
Reliability of vendor 54%
Minimal vibration 53%
Safety features 50%
Versatility 47%
Reputation of vendor 42%
Compact design 40%
Warranty 40%

For more information on stirrers and mixers, including useful articles and a list of manufacturers, visit www.labmanager.com/stirrers-mixers

See results from previous surveys:

Categories: Surveys

Published In

Science & the Social Network Magazine Issue Cover
Science & the Social Network

Published: November 11, 2016

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