After a while, performing that weekly spore test on the autoclave becomes just another task you check off of your weekly Things-To-Do list. Until, which is, you get that realize that says you failed. Then, it will become a top priority to find out what’s wrong, why you failed the test. If you’re ruled out operator error, then it’s probably an equipment problem. Listed below are 7 problems you can search for if yourTuttnauer autoclaves fails the spore test.
Not level: It’s one of those things that’s very easy to over look but if someone jarred your autoclave or it absolutely was recently moved to a new location it could be that it’s no level. The machine needs to be perfectly level in order to force steam downward at the proper angle.
Broken or dirty gasket: Check the gasket around the door to the Temperature Test Chamber. It may be dirty or possess some mineral deposits onto it that are preventing it from creating an air-tight seal. If that’s the case, make reference to the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions. It may also be cracked or damaged somehow and it’s very easy to switch.
Clogged or broken air jet valve: This valve allows steam to become released through the chamber. Pressure inside the chamber circulates the steam and forces it out from the air jet valve. This helps to ensure that the steam inside the chamber remains with a constant temperature and pressure. If the valve is clogged or broken then that cooler steam remains in the chamber and results in cool air pockets. To clear the jet valve, simply pump the clean out wire back and forth 10 times.
Mineral deposits: Mineral deposits on the inside the chamber can prevent or inhibit steam circulation which can cause cold spots in the Thermal Change Test Chamber. Clean the inside of the chamber regularly following the manufacturer’s directions. Never use an abrasive cleaner on the within the chamber.
Faulty heating element: Just because it looks like the heating element is working doesn’t mean it’s working properly. There may be considered a short somewhere that’s preventing it from heating towards the proper temperature. To check, you’ll want to use a volt/ohm meter to measure the resistance. To get the proper range, consult your owner’s manual.
Faulty timer: First, be certain you’re allowing proper warm-up time. When beginning with a cold autoclave you’ll need an additional ten minutes for that cycle. Obviously, the best way to test out your timer is to use a stop watch.
Faulty temperature sensor: The IPX3 IPX4 Test Chamber, or thermistor, controls the heating elements and tells them when to turn on / off. When the sensor is defective then your machine won’t reach the proper temperature. If you’ve tested the mvndkc and it’s within the proper range, then the issue is using the thermistor. Again, it’s very easy to change this part yourself.
Generally in most states, even one failed spore test is reason for alarm. You’ll immediately need to submit another test sample and wait another week for the results. By that period, you might be in big trouble. When you see that first failed test you have to determine what’s causing the problem.
And don’t panic in the event you fail a spore test. More often than not, it’s very readily available and repair any difficulty you might have along with your Tuttnauer autoclave, without needing to send it all out for expensive repairs.