What is a Calibration Certificate for Weighing Scales?
A calibration certificate is a document that confirms or verifies the accuracy of a weighing scale.
The certificate contains details such as the serial number and type of weighing device, its capacity, accuracy class and scale interval at which it was tested.
What information should a certificate include?
A calibration certificate should and will include the results from the most recent calibration test to demonstrate whether the scale meets acceptable industry standards for accuracy.
The certificate should also document information regarding who performed the calibration tests, using what equipment, methodologies and procedures.
Finally, it should be signed off by a qualified technician only. In lab settings, this should be done by a UKAS certified organisation, in order to validate its authenticity.
Why is this certification important?
Calibration certificates are imperative for businesses that rely on weighing devices or balances for accurate measurement or need to ensure their scales are accurate enough for commercial transactions or scientific research.
This gives them assurance that the product produced meets quality standards, as well as statutory and regulatory requirements set out in international meteorological conventions.
Additionally, without valid calibration certificates, businesses may face fines and other penalties such as temporary closure if they fail to meet these rules and regulations.
This certified document avoids this as it provides assurance that a company’s weighing products are reliable, and therefore will help to protect them from potential legal issues.
The different types of calibration certificates
There are two main types of calibration certificates available, which are generally dependent on the purpose of the weighing device. These two main types are:
‘In-Service’ calibration certificate
This is used or needed to verify that an existing scale meets the requirements of a particular industry or legal standard.
‘As New’ certification
This is issued when a newly purchased or manufactured weighing device is tested and found to be accurate within its specified accuracy class.
In some cases, it is also possible to obtain a third type of calibration certificate. This is called:
This is usually issued after recalibrations have been performed on in-service scales.
This document ensures that a previously calibrated scale has returned to acceptable accuracy levels after repairs or maintenance work has taken place.
How often should these certificates be obtained?
The frequency of calibration tests and certification depends on the requirements of the scale’s manufacturer, as well as any regulations or standards applicable to its use.
Generally speaking, scales used for commercial transactions must be re-calibrated at least once a year, while those with greater accuracy classifications may need to be tested more often.
It is important that the calibration certificate remains up-to-date, as scales can lose accuracy over time due to wear or environmental factors. A valid calibration certificate can help guarantee that accurate measurements are taken each time a scale is used.
So to avoid discrepancies, companies should arrange for regular re-calibrations of their weighing equipment in line with industry standards; and it is also important that each weighing device has its own individualised certificate which should always accompany it when in use.
The importance of a calibration certificate cannot be understated. They provide businesses with assurance that their weighing equipment is reliable and accurate, while also helping to protect them from potential legal repercussions.
It is essential that all scales are re-calibrated at least once every year using an accredited laboratory and fully qualified technician, in order to guarantee accuracy and remain compliant with industry standards.
Furthermore, each scale should have its own unique calibration certificate which should always accompany it when in use. By obtaining valid calibration certificates for their equipment, businesses can ensure that their products are up-to-standard, safe and legal.