07 May

Expert service protects you from the high cost of inaccuracy and unscheduled downtime

Your scale is your cash register if you buy or sell a product by weight. Whether the products you weigh are large or small are large, scale uptime and accuracy is key to remaining in business. If you lose even a few pennies per transaction due to an inaccurate scale you can end up losing thousands of dollars.

A scale breakdown can potentially shut down an entire production line, with revenue losses piling up until that line is up again. These costly breakdowns can be prevented with expert scale service. Many breakdowns can be avoided with proper preventative maintenance inspections that identify potential failures early – before they become a costly problem.

Protect your investment in a scale

A scale is a precision measuring device, built with delicate high precision components. It may represent a huge investment – and one that is often placed in a harsh environment. Over time, especially in heavy capacity applications, wear and tear of key components will degrade the accuracy of the scale. A scale service expert will work to understand the unique weighing applications and service requirements of their customers and help to determine a service program and frequency that will best service them to maintain accuracy and uptime.

And by expert service, I don’t just mean slapping a weight and a sticker on a scale when on site for a preventative maintenance service or an emergency repair. Expert service means taking the time to become familiar with a customer’s unique weighing application and service requirements and providing trained technicians who will take the time to inspect the critical components. It also involves taking the time to check for dirt and debris that will impede weighing accuracy as well as reviewing major component wear or damage to ensure the scale is in top operating condition.

Costs can add up quickly when an owner scrimps on scale service – in the end scrimping may cost more than paying for expert scale service! To illustrate this point, consider the example of an owner of a truck scale with a 300 pound (lb.) error. If that owner is selling product across the scale for $0.05 per pound and sells 20 truckloads per day, that would be 100 truckloads per week and 5200 truckloads per year. The error translates to a loss of $15 per truckload, $300 per day, and $1500 per week – that is $78,000 per year!

Let’s count the benefits of expert scale service

There are several benefits to expert scale service, and each results in cost saving. Expert service will:

  • Ensure accuracy, which will prevent loss caused by unknowingly giving away product.
  • Ensure that a scale is dependable and far less likely to suffer a crippling breakdown in the middle of a production run.
  • Extend the life of a scale. Expert scale service means not only checking for accuracy but also inspecting and addressing the potential problems before they become catastrophic failures. With expert scale service, some older scales can be overhauled and returned to their original condition.

I would like to add a few words about metrics that you can use to demonstrate the quality of service provided. For example, consider such customer satisfaction measures as first time fix rates, ability to provide national coverage, and response time to address customer issues.

One metric often used to illustrate the benefit of expert scale service is the preventative maintenance to contract emergency (PM to CE) ratio. This measure means that, in a defined period of time, there should be one planned preventative maintenance visit and no more than one emergency repair service call. The typical PM to CE Ratio would be 1:1 or better. With expert scale service in place the number of PM service visits would always exceed the emergency repair visits.

Do not pass on expert scale service in favor of a cheaper alternative

All too often, business owners pass on expert scale service and instead opt for a cheaper alternative. This can result in lost dollars and production due to inaccurate weights and unexpected breakdowns. Invest in the proper care of your weighing equipment by contracting with a service provider with the proper expertise, who will take the time to provide quality inspection and repair service as well as the proper documentation to ensure maximum accuracy and uptime.