What Do Others Look for Before Purchasing a Water Bath?

By Joshua Delos Reyes, 04 March 2017

Knowing what other people are looking for can help shape your own decision criteria, as there may be important aspects which you didn’t think of, so let’s go over some.

One of the key features and specifications people look for in laboratory water baths is the stability and control of temperature. According to a Lab Manager survey, up to 75% of respondents look for greater temperature uniformity, stability, and control when it comes to selecting a water bath for their laboratories.

For example, the common temperature uniformity in many standard water baths is  ±0.2 degree Celsius. In many high temperature water baths, temperature stabilities can be as precise as ±0.005 degree Celsius. The greater the temperature uniformity, the more expensive the equipment will be.

To save on costs, some users select water baths that provide lesser temperature stability. One reason is some applications may not require a very tight temperature range.

As mentioned earlier, 75% of respondents look for greater temperature stability. However, more respondents actually prioritize the durability (83%) and performance (78%) of laboratory water baths.

Top 10 Features/Factors Respondents Look for When Purchasing a Water Bath or Chiller:

Durability of Product 83%
Performance of Product 78%
Greater Temperature Uniformity, Stability and Control 75%
Value for Price Paid 69%
Low Maintenance / Easy to Clean 66%
Low Operating Costs 57%
Ease of Use; Ergonomic Operation 56%
Total Cost of Ownership 49%
Size of Water Bath 46%
Digital Temperature Control 45%

About durability and performance

Scientists and laboratory managers often look at the warranty as an indicator about a water bath’s durability and performance. The longer the warranty duration, the more confident the manufacturer is about their product.

Many circulating water baths such as the SWBC22 Digital Circulating Water Bath have a 24 month warranty duration. In shaking water baths such as the SWBR27 Shaking Water Bath 2 years is also the most common warranty duration.

Other key features of water baths for laboratories

Aside from durability and performance, respondents also consider the operating costs required by the equipment. For example, HB 10 Heating Bath has 1350 W power input and heat output is 1300 W. The HB 4 Digital Heating Bath has a power input of 1020 W and heat output of 1000 W.

A lower wattage means lower operating costs. In addition, comparing the power input with the heat output gives an indication about the efficiency of the equipment. The higher the ratio of the heat output over the power input, the more efficient the water bath.

Other important factors are value for price paid (69%), low maintenance (66%), ergonomic operation (56%), total cost of ownership (49%), size of water bath (46%), and digital temperature control (45%).

Many scientists and laboratory managers often consider most of these factors. However, the priorities are often placed in the durability and performance of a laboratory equipment. This is important especially that more than half (up to 63% of respondents engaged in purchasing a new bath according to the survey) buy a new water bath to replace aging systems.