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Lab Manager General Lab Product Survey

Are You in the Market for a Bath or Chiller?

Find out how survey respondents repair their baths or chillers and more in the results of our most recent survey

by Andrea Cole

Water baths and circulators are used in a variety of settings including industrial and clinical laboratories, academic institutions, government research laboratories, environmental research applications, and 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.)
  7. 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:

Standard (general purpose) water baths58%
Circulating water baths55%
Shaking water baths25%
Cooled water baths22%
Boiling water baths10%
Waterless bead baths8%
Stirred water baths7%
Steaming water baths3%

How survey respondents repair their baths or chillers:

Our department56%
Manufacturer service agreement22%
Third party service agreement17%
Multi-vendor service agreement4%

Nearly 55 percent of respondents are planning to purchase a new bath or chiller. The reasons for these purchases are as follows:

Replacement of aging system55%
Addition to existing systems, increase capacity27%
Setting up a new lab7%
First time purchase2%

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