Spring is a great time to perform some general maintenance on your truck scale. A popular question we hear from folks is how often does a truck scale have to be tested, adjusted, and/or calibrated? Also, what factors can influence how often scales should be calibrated?
The general consensus is normal routine scale calibration is often determined by state requirements and the scale owner’s quality assurance standards which sometimes might be something as simple as comparing truck weights with a nearby truck scale owner. Many states require the truck scale to be tested and adjusted at least once per year. Furthermore, several states call for calibration to be carried out by way of the State Weights and Measures Department or utilize certified scale service organizations to carry out routine calibration. Of course, state certified test weights are needed for appropriate calibration accuracy.
As for the question of how often do you need to calibrate your scale, it’s usually a good idea to do this at least two or three times a year. Number of truck weighments per day and also the age of the scale add to how frequently a truck scale needs to be adjusted. In most cases you should try to work with a scale company that sells and services truck scales. The company should also have a test truck with certified test weights and a portable weight cart which will allow the scale company to drive the cart around the scale and position the weights in certain places on the scale deck to find little errors that might not be found with just test weights.
Initially, service trips and calibration charges might seem expensive but in many cases the savings a company will enjoy far outweighs the service fees. If a scale is tested and is off just a couple of graduations, that could be over 40 pounds of material you’re losing for each truck that drives over the scale. That could be pretty expensive as well.
Everyone knows that Cardinal Scale offers a wide variety of vehicle weighing scales. Cardinal’s wide variety of USA-made truck scales includes options for every type of weighing need, including electronic and hydraulic truck scales with concrete, steel, and pit type decks. Wireless truck scales are a convenient way to wirelessly transmit data from the scale to the indicator to peripheral equipment like printers, PCs, remote displays, and networks. Models such as the Yukon Off-Road provide high-capacity off-road vehicle weighing for use in the mining industry and other off-road applications, while the CWL-40 and 760 series axle weighers are lightweight and convenient portable scales wheel load weighing.
As the name implies, Cardinal’s ARMOR® truck scales provide customers with superior-strength, long-life steel construction for optimum vehicle weighing. The ARMOR’s durable baked-on, anti-corrosion tan powder paint stands the test of time. The NTEP legal-for-trade Armor® arrives fully-prepared for installation and includes DB75000-lb stainless steel load cells standard, which are factory assembled. A wide selection of Armor® capacities, platform sizes, and types are available. Each Armor® scale bridge features interconnecting load blocks and receivers for an efficient, no-bolt installation. Rodent protection is standard throughout the scale via conduit integral throughout each scale module. Every Armor® truck scale is 100% assembled and tested before shipping.
Wouldn’t it be great to see this scale actually being installed at a customers location? That’s just what this video below does. This video will guide you through the installation of Cardinal Scale Manufacturing Company’s ARMOR® Series Model EPR Truck Scale. The legendary ARMOR® truck scale has been on the market since 1997 and undergone continuous improvement every year since. It offers the most efficient installation of any full-length Cardinal truck scale. The key installation steps covered in the video include weighbridge alignment after offloading, removal of the shipping brackets from the load cell stands, using fish tape to run the load cell wiring, drilling holes for the load cell stand bolts, dropping in the optional guide rails, and test cart calibration.
Cardinal Scale Manufacturing is headquartered in the small community of Webb City, Missouri, a city nestled on the edge of the Ozark mountains, with a population of just under 12,000. All around are wide, open prairies, hills and woods.
If you think about it, maintaining your truck scale calibration, keeping your truck scale clean and in good working order and watching out for any operational errors can help ensure that you keep your vehicle scale on track for a solid year of great weighing and perhaps a great year of profits for your business. As you can see from Steve Langford’s article, a lot of this just makes sense. In some businesses a truck scale is the device that ultimately enables you get what you pay for when buying raw materials as well as making sure that you receive proper payment for your products. An accurate scale is not only necessary to maintain profitability but to comply with applicable local and state weights and measures laws. For most of us, the purchase of a truck scale is a major investment and, when you consider its use, it only makes sense to make sure the scale continues to do its job and to help maximize your profits for many years to come. Let’s take a look at some of the ways to do just that.
Perhaps the best advice to ensure that your truck scales continue to meet your expectations is to be proactive. Don’t wait until your scale is out of calibration before calling your service company. Have your scale’s calibration checked at regular intervals. How often? How long can you go with an inaccurate scale causing you to pay for material you don’t get or to give product away? At a minimum, a truck scale’s calibration should be checked by a reputable scale service company at least once every six months. Between calibration checks, keep an eye on the readings to make sure that the readings stay within the ballpark and are not obviously wrong. If there’s any question, call your scale service company. It’s better to spend a few dollars verifying the calibration of your scale than to loose thousands or more with an inaccurate scale.
Truck scales are designed to maintain calibration, within predefined limits, over a range of temperatures but calibration can vary from winter to summer. If you are in an area subject to temperature extremes, it is a good idea to schedule the calibration of your scale to coincide with the temperature extremes. Granted, the scale may still be in calibration and only slightly high or low but, the greater the number of weighing operations, the greater the influence on your bottom line. Keep in mind that you are obligated to keep the calibration as close to a zero error as reasonably possible so that the scale favors neither the buyer nor the seller. Why would an honest business owner want it any other way? Continue reading →
It doesn’t matter if we are looking to buy a computer or a treadmill, we all want to buy a product that has a solid warranty. Often times that warranty will only cover the parts that might break, leaving you to pay for the extra expenses like labor and travel mileage. Well, Avery Weigh-Tronix has now added an optional warranty which will be ideal for many truck scale customers. They call it the Blue Blanket truck scale warranty and for just a small investment, the optional 5-Year Blue Blanket Truck Scale Warranty can be the perfect choice for a customer to protect their investment.
The new ‘blue blanket’ warranty option can really add another dimension of long-term value to your AWTX truck scales. If you were to add this additional protection to your truck scale, the customer now has an option to use scheduled preventative maintenance to extend their warranty. This is great since these days some bid specifications call for a 5-year comprehensive warranty and this option fulfills that requirement.
This ‘blue blanket’ includes all weighbridge components and indicator plus travel and labor at standard rates. The part number for the blue blanket warranty is AWT97-501690.
We’re just about ready to head into the busy summer months. In a lot of cases, it is also a busy time for your truck scales. Spring is the best time to get the following maintenace done, because all the melting snow (in some areas) creating running water, mud and muck can wreak havoc on your truck scale operations; washing debris into pits and foundations, and damaging equipment. Not to mention the critters who have taken up residence over the long winter. We recommend completing the following steps in late spring to ensure you are up and running in time for the busy summer season. Continue reading →
It is probably a good idea to have your heavy capacity truck scales checked at least every six months at a minimum. Also, a convenient time to conduct a preventative maintenance scale inspection is during the regularly scheduled calibration check. It’s a good idea to inspect your truck scale just prior to peak usage times, such as harvest season in agricultural operations. Click here for more detailed scale service info available from Central Carolina Scale.