Top 3 Tips to Maintain Your Sterilizer
Properly maintaining your sterilizer saves you money and will keep the unit running longer. Every sterilizer has different requirements for maintenance so be sure to check the manufacturer's recommendations. We can compare the SciCan Statim 2000 and a Midmark M9/M11 for an example. The Statim 2000 has different requirements for maintenance for every day, once a week, every 6 months and once a year. The M9/M11 maintenance instructions include daily, weekly, monthly, and every 10 years or 10,000 cycles a technician inspection.
Download a free maintenance tracker here. The tracker includes 5 color coordinated sheets for common maintenance intervals including daily, weekly, monthly, 6 month, and yearly. This allows you to write in the equipment name and the maintenance required for that item. Just print, write, and laminate it so it can be reused with fine tip whiteboard markers. Alternatively, you could fill it out digitally.
2. Don’t Overload
No matter what type of sterilizer you use, putting too many instruments inside at one time will extend cycle times and could prevent the items from being sufficiently sterilized. For the instruments to be properly sterilized they need to reach the unit’s instructed temperature. The more items you add at one time, the longer it will take to heat up every item and in the worst case, they may not get to the appropriate temperature at all.
3. Spore Tests and Sterilizer Failure
A spore test should be done regularly to verify that sterilizer is actually sterilizing. When a spore test is positive for the presence of spores, this could be due to a number of potential reasons including:
- Loading too many items at one time (like we talked about in tip 2).
- Wrong temperature or pressure settings.
- Broken gauge for temperature or pressure.
- Faulty door or cassette gasket.
It is a good idea to consider these potential issues and run the cycle again. Remember that these are just a few suggestions and there could be other reasons your sterilizer isn’t performing optimally. Always reach out to your preferred technician if you are having on going issues.
Keeping your sterilizer maintained, loading the unit correctly, and doing a regular spore check are all great ways to keep your sterilizer working for a long time. If you do find yourself in need of another sterilizer, shop our selection of affordable sterilizers ranging from dry heat to autoclave. We even refurbish sterilizers and back them with a one-year warranty.