Autoclaves are available in a wide variety of configurations, sizes and designs.
There are built-in wall units, portable units and various configurations such as top-loading autoclaves and horizontal front loading autoclaves among others.
Due to the sheer number of options available in the market, choosing the best one for your needs isn't an easy choice.
Choosing the right autoclave for your needs depends on a variety of factors including your throughput needs, type of autoclave media, availability of space, convenience as well as personal preferences among other things.
Are Autoclaves Portable?
Portable autoclaves have been available for many decades. These are also known as tabletop autoclaves and are available in many different designs.
Portable autoclave sterilisers are generally preferred for steam sterilisation jobs at hospitals, nursing homes, dental clinics and tattoo shops among other places.
These typically have a capacity ranging from 5 to 20 litres though you can also buy higher capacity autoclaves from some manufacturers.
Advantages of Portable Autoclaves
Compact Size – Due to being compact in design, these do not need too much bench space which means these are the perfect solution for sterilisation in places where space is at a premium. In fact, these can also be safely used in air-conditioned clinics.
Hassle-free Operation – These appliances typically have pre-set controls that can be modified electronically and these also have various safety features including auto switch off. They are extremely easy to operate and do not require any special training for the operator.
Inexpensive – Due to their small size and limited sterilisation capacity, these tend to be inexpensive and can be easily used in tattoo shops as well as in places that do not require higher capacity.
Limited Power Consumption – These have much lower power consumption compared to built-in wall units due to their small size.
Quick – Due to their small size, these units do not take too long for the total sterilisation process. In fact, many units require only around 20 to 40 minutes to complete the sterilisation process.
Simple Installation – These are plug and play units which means you do not need to call in the professionals for their installation. Just plug it in and start using.
Choosing the Right Autoclave
Here is a list of some of the important criteria you need to look at in order to choose the right autoclave:
Chamber Size – The first thing you need to look at is the size of the chamber. Portable autoclaves vary in size from 5 to 20 L but you can always buy an autoclave with bigger chamber capacity.
Portable autoclaves have an advantage as smaller chambers typically mean faster sterilisation cycles. Your choice will depend on your particular needs.
If you want an autoclave for a dental clinic, a tattoo shop or a laboratory where you need a capacity of only up to 20 litres, a tabletop autoclave is the right choice.
Cycle Duration – This refers to the time it takes for a sterilisation cycle to complete. Portable autoclaves typically have shorter cycles anywhere from 20 to 40 minutes.
Warranty – Needless to say, you want to buy sterilisation equipment that comes with optimum warranty. Longer warranty means increased peace of mind and you also get to save money.
Accessories – Many suppliers also provide a number of optional accessories that can be quite useful in certain situations.
Some of these accessories include a digital temperature indicator, low water sensor, aluminium or stainless steel basket, buzzer, sterilisation indicator, disinfectant tray, printer, and various types of containers among others.
Price – As far as the price is concerned, it will depend on the technical specifications as well as its reliability. Needless to say, reliability comes at a price.
Never compromise on the quality of an autoclave as even a slight problem with the unit can have dangerous consequences.
It's recommended to focus on the reliability of the manufacturer and their reputation instead of just the price alone.
We were originally established in 1952 in order to provide electro-medical products to healthcare professionals across the country.
The company (Medical Equipment Services) was acquired by Medical Equipment Australia in 2009. Since then, we have also expanded into the dental industry.