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How to test your scales with test weights


We highly recommend that you have your weighing equipment tested and calibrated at least once a year by a qualified service provider. However, it is also wise to do your own checks in between, to ensure that your equipment is efficient and continues to perform well.

Why test your scales yourself?

Scales can go out of calibration over time due to various factors such as environment, gravity, temperature, incorrect levelling, vibration, constant zero adjusting, misuse, product build up, and component wear.

If you have an expensive product with a high value per kilogram, then a few grams overweight from every sale can seriously affect your bottom line. If you are only having your scales checked annually then that discrepancy could add up to a large amount.

Conversely if the scale is underweight then you could be short changing your customers of product, or risk rejection by not meeting your customers or the trade measurement’s legal requirements.

For example, imagine you are a food manufacturer and you sell your product at $30.00 per kg. Each week you have an order to produce and sell 2,000 packs at 500g each, totalling 1,000kg batch per week.

Even if you have just a 10g discrepancy on each 500g pack, it will equate to $600.00 +/- in that 1,000kg batch.

If this discrepancy goes unchecked for a month, 3 months, 6 months, or up to a year, the figure would increase dramatically.

How should I test?

A simple way to test your weighing equipment is to have a few of your own test weights and keep a log book of the test. The log book simply records the date, weight used and the weight reading.

An example:


Equipment: Ohaus Valor Bench Scale, Serial No. 1234, Capacity 6kg x 2g

Tolerance 4g

Date Tested Weight Used Displayed Weight Pass/Fail
01/04/2019 2kg 2002g Pass
01/05/2019 2kg 2004g Pass
01/06/2019 2kg 2006g Fail – needs service


By monitoring any weight discrepancies, you can be proactive about booking in a service when your scale may be out of its weight tolerance.

We can supply and test your weights to either trade or NATA tolerance, based on your individual requirements. Our weights are manufactured in cast iron, brass or stainless steel and we are happy to advise you on what combination and type of weights would suit your application.

For more information about Able Scale’s weights and/or scale repair services, please visit our website or call 1300 731 360.

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