A moisture meter is only as good as its readings. If your readings are inaccurate, it can create poor final results, and lots of headaches for you. So how can you be sure that you’ve taken an accurate reading? What can you do to safeguard yourself from an incorrect reading, and the challenges that follow?
We’ve compiled a few tips to ensure that you get the right reading, every single time.
Take Multiple Readings
Any scientist will tell you that, when conducting an experiment, it’s vital to have a large sample size. You shouldn’t rely on just one reading, especially for a large volume of material. If you are, for example, testing the moisture level in a great deal of lumber before you frame a house or lay a hardwood floor, but you only take one reading for the entire load of wood, it’s hard to say if your reading is truly representative of the entire pile of lumber as a whole.
If your moisture meter is accurate, you should get similar, if not identical readings, when you take a reading in the same area. Consistency is key. If you get different readings in the same area, you may want to check the calibration of your meter. And don’t forget to take multiple samples for readings too, to ensure that you have an accurate reading of the entirety of your product.
Use the Right Tools
Are you trying to make a paper moisture meter work for woodworking or concrete? If so, you can’t be 100% positive that you are getting the best results. Invest in the correct moisture meter for your needs in order to achieve the best outcome, or consider purchasing a universal moisture meter, or a near-infrared moisture meter. Both of these meters require little to no calibration, and provide you with the flexibility to use them on almost any material.
Like using a flathead screwdriver for a phillips-head screw, using the wrong moisture meter is challenging and clunky. Be sure that you are getting the most correct moisture reading by investing in the proper tools.
Properly Calibrate Your Meter
With each use and every new material you read, it is important to re-calibrate your meter so that your reading is as accurate as possible. Taking the time to do so ensures that your instrument is properly assessing the composition of the material and giving you the correct reading.
Using a meter outside of its intended purpose, or using a universal meter? Know the correct conversion so that you can trust that not only is your reading accurate, but that the information is interpreted correctly as well. Being aware of these conversions is just as important as taking an accurate reading.
Consider Temperature and Material
Different temperatures can mean different levels of relative moisture in the air. While this won’t significantly affect the accuracy of a reading in most cases, extreme changes in temperature may impact your reading. With materials like wood or hay that tend to absorb a great deal of moisture, it’s especially important to use a temperature correction chart in extremely cold or extremely hot conditions so that you get the most reliable reading possible.
Another thing that plays a role in getting a precise reading is variances in materials. Different woods absorb varying levels of moisture content, as do papers of different densities or concrete manufactured in different ways. Knowledge is power; knowing the composition of your material can ensure that you get a good reading.
Protect Your Meter from Damage
After each use, your meter should be properly cleaned and stored. Wipe down the pins to protect them from extended exposure to water content or other debris and safely store your meter in its case to protect it from impact or other harm that could damage the instrument.
Keeping your meter as good as new means that it will continue to work just like it did on Day One. Loose wiring, damaged circuits, rusty or broken pins, or other structural issues will certainly give you inaccurate readings, so be sure to keep the pins wiped down and the instrument safely stored.
Looking for a moisture meter you can rely on? At Kett, our meters are built to be reliable, long-lasting, and incredibly accurate. We understand the importance of a correct moisture content reading, and just how vital an accurate reading can be to the success of your company.
Get in touch with us today, and let us help you find the best moisture meter for your needs, so you can feel safe trusting your readings time and time again.