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How Frequently Do Sensors Need Calibration?

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  • How Frequently Do Sensors Need Calibration?
  • June 26, 2018

How Frequently Do Sensors Need Calibration?

Different types of sensors are used to measure the extent of sound, temperature, light or pressure. These measurements have a critical impact on different areas, which is why it is important to ensure that the sensors give out the correct reading.

However, with regular usage, sensors often lose their ability for exact measurement and may provide an erroneous result. Such sensors need to be calibrated to ensure the readings are accurate.

Calibration is the procedure of finding out the deviation between the ‘true’ reading and ‘displayed’ reading. Calibrating your sensor shows how effective your sensors are.

Given the importance of sensors in various sectors, it is important to calibrate them at appropriate intervals so as to get an accurate reading. However, most manufacturers do not provide specific guidelines on how often should you calibrate your sensor.

This is because variations can occur easily between the same types of sensors or between sensors manufactured in different batches. A particular sensor may have excellent long-term stability while a similar one may not last that long. There is no ‘perfect sensor’ in the true sense and regular monitoring is crucial.

Another factor that affects the accuracy of sensors is the surrounding environment and its impact. Sensors that are regularly exposed to cold, heat, humidity, thunderstorms etc are likely to show less accurate readings.

Sensors used to measure readings on colour and light can be influenced by spectral dispersal, optical reflections, ambient light and such other optical factors.

The way the sensor is applied or used is another aspect that affects its performance level. Handheld sensors that are moved across different environments may need to be calibrated more often than sensors that are fixed.

Sensors used in areas that require high precision measurements need to be calibrated every six months in order to guarantee the most accurate results.

The design of the sensor and the range of accuracy required also determine how often you need to calibrate your sensors.

Furthermore, precise calibration of a sensor leads to less uncertainty and indecision at critical moments. When you have installed a sensor for a particular purpose, you need to ensure its dependability.

Calibration is also necessary because like all instruments, sensors too age over time. If you are using an old sensor that has not been calibrated for long, you will definitely not get the most accurate readings.

Hence, there is no specific time frame within which you need to calibrate your sensors. It depends on the necessity of the moment although it is advisable to get them calibrated once a year. The maximum limit is three years beyond which you can never be sure about the accuracy of readings given by your sensors.

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