If you use scales regularly for your home or business, you would know that some scales are waterproof while others aren’t. General household scales don’t usually need to be waterproof, but in a commercial or industrial setting, waterproof scales can be a game-changer.
Different scales have different levels of water resistance, however, and this is often signified by the product’s IP rating. When choosing your waterproof scales, it’s important to understand what IP ratings are and how they relate to your scales. Let’s take a look at why IP rating is so important for scales.
When are waterproof scales required?
As mentioned, many commercial and industrial settings use waterproof scales. For example, the food industry relies on waterproof scales because it means they can be cleaned far more effectively. Businesses working in the agricultural sector also benefit greatly from waterproof scales for much the same reason. The working environments aren’t as sterile and are usually cleaned using high-powered pressure hoses, meaning any permanently fixed scale needs to be waterproof.
Other industries such as the medical and scientific fields may also favour waterproof scales because regular cleaning prevents contamination.
What is IP rating?
The term ‘IP Rating’ technically means Ingress Protection Rating, however, it’s also known as the International Protection Rating. This rating is given to mechanical or electrical devices to signify their resistance to unwanted intrusions including water, dust dirt and other contaminants. The IP rating works on three different levels of intrusion, including user protection against getting hands or fingers caught in the device, the degree of protection against contaminants like dirt and dust, and then the overall resistance to moisture.
IP ratings are usually two digits, with the first digit representing how resistant a device is to foreign objects, including dirt and dust. The second digit refers to moisture resistance. So, in terms of determining how waterproof your scales are, the second digit in the IP rating is of major significance. Naturally, 9 is the highest rating, although the digits may sometimes be followed with a letter, which may indicate specific resistance to certain substances like oil.
Why is IP rating important?
The IP rating is important because it gives you confidence that your scales can be cleaned effectively without worrying about exposure to water. Rather than carefully wiping scales down avoiding too much moisture, you can thoroughly clean them properly if your scales have a high IP rating.
Generally, any IP rating with a second digit above 5 is considered ‘waterproof’, however, you may need closer to an 8 or 9 if you’re intending to use high-pressure hoses to clean the scales. This is because IP ratings look at much more than just the seals around your scale. It takes into consideration the force of water, angles of water and also the level of submersion possible. So, the right scale for you is going to be determined by how you intend to use it.
The benefits of using waterproof scales
Waterproof scales give you more freedom to go about your business, keeping your equipment clean and contaminant-free without worrying about causing damage to your scales. They’re easier to clean, especially larger scales in an industrial or agricultural environment. By using waterproof scales, you can also clean them more regularly, preventing cross-contamination of products or substances.