Lab Manager | Run Your Lab Like a Business

2014 Pipettes Survey Results

Pipettes can be found in almost every laboratory and, if you’re looking to buy one, there are many options— manual or electronic, single or multi-channel. Luckily, a few main considerations can help in deciding whether or not to buy the latest pipette technology. 

Trevor Henderson, PhD

Trevor Henderson BSc (HK), MSc, PhD (c), is the creative services director at Lab Manager.  He has more than two decades of experience in the fields of scientific...

ViewFull Profile.
Learn about ourEditorial Policies.

Top 5 Questions You Should Ask When Buying a Pipette

  1. What differentiates the pipette from others offered in terms of performance and ergonomics?
  2. Is the product compatible with other manufacturers’ consumables (tips)?
  3. What types of services are offered for this product? Calibration? Repair?
  4. Does the company offer application support and technical phone support before and after product purchase?
  5. What is the product life expectation? What is the product’s warranty period? If the company discontinues the product, for how many years do they provide accessories and parts for the instrument?

Types of pipettes used by survey respondents:

Manual: Single-channel 32%
Manual: Multi-channel 19%
Manual: Fixed volume 14%
Electronic: Single-channel 10%
Electronic: Multi-channel 8%
Electronic: Fixed volume 3%
Repeater 13%
Other 1%

Estimated daily time spent using a pipette as reported by survey respondents:

Less than 1 hour 25%
1 - 2 hours 31%
2 - 3 hours 23%
Over 3 hours 22%

Nearly 40% of respondents plan on purchasing a pipette in the next year. The reasons for these purchases are as follows:

Replacement of aging pipette
Addition to existing systems, increase capacity
Setting up a new lab
Moving from a handheld pipette to an automatic pipette
Need a more ergonomic pipette

Top 10 features/factors respondents look for when purchasing an ELN:

Consistent performance and accuracy of product 90%
Durability of Product 81%
Availability of Tips and Accessories 75%
Low Maintenance / Easy to Clean 63%
Designed to Permit Recalibration 58%
Price 58%
Service and Support 49%
Warranties 48%
Ergonomic Operation 47%
Leak Detection 43%

Completed Surveys: 907

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

See the most recent survey results