Routine maintenance of laboratory equipment will ensure that the experiments are conducted efficiently and without malfunctions, and will avoid unnecessary repair expenses. A clean laboratory without dust and dirt is the basis for proper equipment.
How To Clean Laboratory Equipment-General
Lab cleaning is one of the easiest, most affordable and obvious ways to keep your lab in great condition.
- Wipe every day the equipment used, cover the sensitive equipment such as microscopes so that dust does not damage the lenses, cover analytical balances and any other sensitive device.- Perform a thorough cleaning once a week of all equipment.
- Perform a thorough and regular cleaning of microscopes using a 70:30 mixture of alcohol. This will ensure you that they are clean enough to yield the most accurate results.
-Lenses should not be touched with your hands and should only be cleaned with rice paper.
- Consider performing an external inspection of cleaning large items by a qualified company. Maintaining and cleaning third-party equipment can be a cost-effective alternative.
-Developing ventilation dust should be cleaned in refrigeration facilities such as refrigerators, freezers, chillers, etc.
-Avoid introducing dust, smoke, such as incinerators and oil pumps into the laboratory. It is also possible to install appropriate filters.
Performing these simple cleaning procedures will help you keep the equipment in good condition and with maximum accuracy. Exposed surfaces should be wiped on a daily basis.
Calibration Of Laboratory Equipment
Failure to calibrate laboratory equipment regularly can lead to inaccuracies in the data, which will impair experiments. In addition, proper calibration can also improve laboratory safety wherever hazardous chemicals are used.
- Perform an inventory check of the equipment and decide which calibration is best for each item
-Calibrate equipment regularly in order to maintain maximum accuracy.
Repairs of Laboratory Equipment
Sometimes lab equipment will break down or stop working. But instead of throwing straight into the trash, take the time to see if parts can be replaced or the equipment repaired.
Especially with larger items such as Laboratory ovens, incubators, which low cost repair and replacement parts can be an effective way to significantly increase life expectancy and save unnecessary costs.
New and used laboratory Equipment
Sometimes you will not be able to repair the device and you will have to look for a new device. It can be tempting to take what initially looks like a cost-effective price and purchase the cheaper model but this is simply not true, the cheaper equipment is more likely to break down because its components are less quality - motors, gaskets, controllers, sensors and more.
Therefore, choosing quality lab equipment over less expensive alternatives usually offers improved durability, especially for equipment items that are used regularly.
List of things for general laboratory equipment maintenance
-Clean every day: It is recommended to have a basic cleaning list in the lab to remind the staff what things need to be taken care of on a daily basis.
- Check the personal equipment: The quality condition must be maintained before starting any project.
- Hand washing: Sinks should be kept clean, while soap, disinfectant and towels should be provided.
-It is important to keep stock of all the items that require storage in refrigerators and freezers and know their quantity and expiration date.
-Emergency and safety exits: Tests must be performed on your fire and sprinkler safety systems in the laboratory.
Laboratory Safety Symbols
- General warning: signage reminds us that the area where you work may contain risks and you must work accordingly.
-Flammable material: This mark usually appears in laboratories and means that there may be flammable materials.
- Toxic substance: You will find entry areas where substances that may harm humans are kept.
-Low / High Temperature: The icon indicates an area with low/high temperature.
-Non-ionizing radiation: You will find this symbol in areas where there is non-ionizing radiation.
-Oxidizing material: oxidizing substances such as bromine, chlorates, perchloric acid and peroxides.
-Danger of laser beam.
- Danger of explosives: This symbol indicates that chemicals with explosive properties exist in the area