How to Re-Calibrate a Gas Detector

Posted by PK Safety Team on Nov 19th 2019

How to Re-Calibrate a Gas Detector

There are lots of different options to consider when re-calibrating a gas monitor. Every gas detector is different, so re-calibrating all depends on what kind of monitor you’re working with.

Re-calibration is essential when it comes to the health and safety of your employees. Gas monitors typically need to be re-calibrated every six months, according to The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). You’ll also need to bump test your equipment regularly to make sure all the sensors and components are working properly. If you fail to re-calibrate your monitors, they may take inaccurate readings, which could put you and your team at risk.

Learn more about gas detection calibration, so you and your team can breathe easy.

Why Calibration is Necessary

Gas detectors, whether of the single or multi-gas type, depend on individual sensors to measure for specific gases in the air. These sensors have unique ways of making these measurements. For instance oxygen and combustible sensors use completely different technologies to operate. What they do all share in common is that they are not 'fail safe'. That is, as the measurement output drifts over time (they all drift over time!), they don't fail by telling you that the sensor is bad. Rather they have reduced output that is no different from simply a low reading.

The only way for you to know that the detector is operating correctly is to calibrate regularly, and to bump test in between. Bump testing is another subject, and will be covered in another blog post.

Manual Re-Calibration

To manually re-calibrate your monitor, start by checking the owner’s manual. This should outline everything you need to know regarding the gas detection calibration process. You should also find a customer service number on the manual or the monitor itself. Talk to a representative from the company if you have any questions along the way.

Manually re-calibrating your monitors should take no more than five minutes per monitor, so this is a great choice if you’re only working with a few monitors at a time.

Automatic Re-Calibration

If you have a number of monitors to re-calibrate, manually re-calibrating each piece of equipment may not be the most efficient use of your time. That’s why large teams and employers will often use automatic re-calibration equipment, including monitor docking stations.

Instead of manually re-calibrating each device, you and your team can simply leave your monitors in the docking station where they will re-calibrate automatically. Generally, automatic re-calibration should take a few hours, so by the time you come back to work for your next shift, the monitors will be ready to use again. You won’t have to worry about pausing your operations as you manually re-calibrate your monitors every six months.

Simplifying the Re-Calibration Process

While automatically re-calibrating your monitors is one of the best and easiest ways to simplify this process, there are other options to consider.

When it comes to gas detection calibration, it’s best to keep your calibration gases near your monitors, especially if you’re constantly on the go. The BW GasAlert Quattro Multi-Gas Confined Space Complete Kit comes with everything you need to quickly re-calibrate the included monitor in the field, so you don’t have to worry about taking inaccurate readings on the job.

The BW GasAlert Max XT II Complete Confined Space Kit is another great choice. It comes with software that lets you sample remote locations, perform bump tests, and re-calibrate your monitors right from your PC. You can also use this software to access the monitor interface and replace clogged filters. As a manager or supervisor, you can quickly monitor your team’s equipment without leaving your office.

Re-calibrating your monitors doesn’t have to be a chore. If you just have a few monitors to work with, re-calibrating should be a breeze, but, as you add more monitors, automating this process can help you save time and increase efficiency. You should never fall behind on your re-calibration duties. Make sure you update your equipment every six months.

For more information about the gas monitor calibration process or if you need help choosing a monitor for you and your team, contact the professionals at PK Safety.