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CO2 Incubators: Time to Service or Replace?

Top 6 Signs That You Should Service or Replace Your CO2 Incubator

Top 6 Signs That You Should Service or Replace Your CO2 Incubator

CO2 Incubators should have a regular maintenance schedule to avoid unscheduled down-time and potential loss of product. Components of the incubator such as the CO2 sensor and temperature controller need to be calibrated on a regular schedule. HEPA filters, and anodes should be replaced regularly. Decontamination of the incubator needs to occur on a frequent basis.
If your CO2 incubator is older than 5 years, chances are there have been improvements to CO2 incubator technology such as IR sensor monitoring of the CO2 levels. This technology change improves the accuracy of CO2 level monitoring and improves reliability of the incubator.

If your CO2 incubator is more than 7 years old, chances are it has parts on it that are obsolete and impossible to get, which could result in excessive down-time. It is better to replace the unit early and reduce the risk.

When the warranty period is expired. Repairs on units that are out of the warranty can be costly. It may be more economical to buy a new unit.
Newer models of CO2 incubators offer features such as high heat decontamination which can greatly reduce contamination inside the unit.
CO2 calibration issues—frequency, off set amount, stability for CO2, temp, etc. Humidity pan condition, gaskets, evidence of condensation, etc.

Linda CO2 Video

Top 6 Questions That You Should Ask When Buying a CO2 Incubator

What measures have been taken in the design to avoid contamination and what features are included to remove (sterilize versus decon) contamination?
How does the CO2 sensor contribute to optimal cell growth?
How does the humidity contribute to optimal cell growth?
Ask for the uniformity and accuracy data versus asking for a water jacket or air jacket.
Do you need O2 control to simulate the environment for your experiment accurately?
Calculate the total cost of ownership on the product over one year including product price, install, regular cleaning labor, material like HEPA filter, etc.

Recently Released Incubators

Heratherm Microbiological Incubators

  • Include two new sizes for high sample volume or larger samples: 400- and 750-liter capacity
  • Provide excellent temperature performance for reproducible results
  • General Protocol incubators are designed for routine applications in pharmaceutical, medical, food and research laboratories
  • Advanced Protocol Security incubators come with mechanical convection technology for excellent temperature performance – keeping sample environment stable

Thermo Fisher Scientific

Model 2428H Large Capacity CO2 Incubator

  • 27 cubic foot incubator features active humidity control up to 95%
  • Features excellent CO2 and temperature uniformity
  • Includes a user controllable humidity system that is more accurate and responsive to door openings than a traditional water pan humidity system
  • Heated glass door minimizes condensation, another potential source for contamination



Incubator Manufacturers


Boekel Scientific

CARON Products





Jeio Tech

Labnet International


PHC Corporation of North America


Thermo Fisher Scientific

Torrey Pines Scientific