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Calibration:Why Do I Need It and How Will It Help Me?

(Purpose, Importance and Benefits of Weighing Equipment Calibration)

In a constantly changing world where man-made things are found everywhere, have you ever stopped to wonder how the product you are using, or the service you are utilizing, depended on accurate measurements just to deliver the comfort, safety and reliability you need? Think about this whenever you use your phone or laptop, when driving your car or when you turn on the light in your room. Accuracy plays a much bigger role in this world than you can imagine.

However, the accuracy of equipment, specifically measuring devices, degrades over time. This could be caused by normal wear and tear; just like all other equipment which degrades over a long period of time, and some electric or mechanical factors caused by a risky manufacturing environment. This is where calibration comes to the rescue- improving the accuracy of the measuring device to improve product quality. 

Test Weight Hire for Weighbridge Calibration

What Is Calibration And Why Is It Important?

Calibration is the process of comparing two measurement devices against each other and the documentation of this comparison. The device to be calibrated is compared against another device (often referred to as a calibrator) that has been calibrated making it more accurate with a traceable reference standard. Consider a digital thermometer that needs calibrating; to perform the calibration, a test instrument is attached to the digital thermometer and a voltage/force equivalent to the accurate temperature needed is applied to the digital thermometer. Once the result is recorded, the thermometer is then considered to be calibrated. 

Calibration of measuring devices has three purposes: It checks the accuracy of the instrument, determines the traceability of the measurement and it repairs the device if it is out of calibration. This usually involves a report provided by the calibration expert, showing the error in measurements of the measuring device before and after the calibration.

It is extremely important to calibrate equipment to help assure accurate measurements and production of quality products with minimal errors and recalls. Thanks to calibration, any error or uncertainty of the measuring device is resolved by ensuring the accuracy of the test equipment.

What Are The Benefits Of Calibration And How Will It Help Me?

Regular calibration of your measuring device plays a huge role in the smooth functioning of your operations, as well as the profitability of your business. It is easy to calculate the annual costs of the calibration process, including equipment and labor and conclude that calibration requires money to be spent. It is, however, difficult to calculate the costs of not calibrating enough, or making bad calibrations. If you want to avoid these unwanted and unnecessary costs, it naturally takes resources and investments to be made. 

  • Profitability

Your business’ profit can be increased by either increasing revenues or cutting costs; calibration helps do both. By providing quality products and services with good accuracy in measurements, your company gets great customer reviews and loyal customers resulting in increased revenue. By reducing production errors and recalls, calibration also helps cut costs.

  • Product Quality

To prove that your final product is of the highest quality, various measurements are needed to be performed during the manufacturing process. These measurements need to be maintained and continuously proven accurate with regular calibrations. In some industries, any error in the measurements will cause direct error in the money transfer so the accuracy of specific measurements are of critical importance. With amounts of money transfers so large, it is often easy to justify making investments for accurate measurements and a reliable calibration process. 

  • Safety

Calibration allows you to get reliable and accurate numbers for safety purposes. This is especially important when you are measuring electric currents, or mixing explosive chemicals wherein even the smallest changes to your numbers can rapidly put your staff in danger. 

  • Production Efficiency and Equipment Maintenance

Through calibration, the life of measuring devices is extended. Imagine how the parts of a scale become imbalanced and misaligned over time, if not calibrated, the scale can fail unexpectedly which makes it even harder and more expensive to purchase a new one. Accurate measuring, brought by regular calibration  is perhaps the most effective way of averting costly repairs or even claims for damages. Problems can be proactively resolved during normal maintenance times rather than waiting for failures to occur, which can eventually cause production shutdowns. 

  • Improved Compliance With Regulations

If you’re looking for more reasons to require calibration services, think about the regulations you need to obey and the quality systems you need to follow. Aside from your company’s quality system, you need to include Environmental responsibility and various regulations and standards.

What Happens If I Don’t Calibrate?

The results of overlooking calibration doesn’t just involve increased production costs due to manufacturing errors, it can also lead to increased plant shutdowns and early breakage of equipment. Take a look at the sample situations below that you might experience, and hopefully avoid through calibration:

  • Poor product quality and Loss of reputation 
  • Safety risks for employees and customers 
  • Unexpected downtime 
  • Economic losses
  • Failure to meet the quality system 
  • Failure in meeting the regulations (license to operate might get revoked)

Considering the costs that you will have to pay from legal action for damages that might be filed against you, the expenses for proper calibration and adjustment are nothing in comparison. If you wish to establish long-term business relationships, then you need to regularly calibrate your equipment.

How Often Do I Need To Calibrate?

Most equipment manufacturers provide a recommendation for the measurement device’s calibration period. However, calibration is also advised when: 

  • A mechanical or electrical shock unexpectedly happened
  • A routine for calibration is established, such as periodically (annually, quarterly, monthly)

The importance of calibration only grows as the days pass. The further we push technology, the more accurate measurements need to be and the greater the significance of calibration. Remember that the hidden costs and risks associated with measuring devices that are not calibrated regularly could be much higher than the cost of calibration itself. It is highly recommended that the measuring instruments are calibrated regularly by a trusted and reliable company. For questions regarding Calibration Services, talk to the Top Weighing Equipment Technicians in Australia, Australian Weighing Equipment. At The AWE Group, we consider the cost of calibration as an investment for your business’ future. 

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