[Updated version]

Water droplets on stainless steel

When you’re talking about scales used for messy applications or in dirty, damp locations, the ability to thoroughly wash a scale is imperative.

That’s why scale manufacturers provide washdown scales. Generally speaking, a good washdown scale is outfitted with stainless steel construction and thorough sealing, enabling it to withstand thorough, frequent cleaning with a high-pressure washer or a hose. This allows for removal of any residual particles after weighing, which minimizes the possibility of cross-contamination, removes dirt build-up and helps eliminate the growth of bacteria, mold or other toxins.

How can I use a washdown scale?

A washdown scale is used within a variety of industries from food and catering to industrial and pharmaceutical. Washdown scales come with robust stainless steel pans that allow them to be washed without the risk of damaging the internal components of the scale. We have included some examples of how to use a washdown scale for your weighing needs below: 

Using the Washdown Scale for food weighing

Washdown scales can be used by markets for food weighing applications including the weighing of fruit, vegetables and produce. For example, sacks of potatoes are both heavy and likely to accrue dirt on a weighing scale over time. Therefore, it is essential that you use weighing equipment that is robust, convenient and easy to clean.

Why you should use a washdown scale for weighing food

Let's take the potatoes example above to show how a washdown scale is ideal for food weighing:

  • Firstly, a bag of potatoes is likely to weigh enough to make lifting a challenge, the washdown scale features a low weighing pan that is convenient for placing heavy and bulky loads without the need for extended lifting. 
  • Secondly, the scale can withstand heavy-duty weighing up to a 32kg capacity due to its stainless steel construction. 
  • Lastly, weighing vegetables like potatoes or carrots is guaranteed to produce dirt and bacteria, the stainless steel pan is combined with a protected loadcell chamber which allows you to extensively clean the scale without the risk of internal damage and ensuring food hygiene standards.     

Using washdown scales for building work

Due to its versatile design, the washdown scale is ideal for building and industrial jobs from general construction work to mining. The scale’s stainless steel pan is useful for weighing building materials such as slate, limestone or brick for houses due to its robust material composition and easy-to-wash properties. For example, the scale can use checkweighing features for calculating the weight of tile shipments precisely, ensuring you have an ample amount of materials on-site for work to begin. The same checkweighing features can be used for weighing coal for local distribution and selling when using a trade approved washdown scale.   

IP ratings

Manufacturers produce scales with a variety of ingress protection ratings, or IP ratings. These ratings are given to devices based on their level of protection against intrusion of dust and water. By industry definition, washdown scales must have at least an IP65 rating.

What does an IP rating mean?

The International Electrotechnical Commission sets and regulates the standards for defining the type of protection. The IEC is the world’s leading organization that prepares and publishes international standards for all electrical, electronic and related technologies.

What does this mean for someone who’s shopping for a washdown scale? When the internal mechanisms of these devices offer protection against dust and water, they are assigned an Ingress Protection (IP) rating. The IP rating is a number that corresponds with the level of protection. The degrees of ingress protection are expressed as “IP” followed by a two-digit number, such as IP65, IP66 and IP67. The numbers vary depending on the amount of protection provided.

The first digit in the IP rating designates how well the product is protected against particulate matter, such as dust. As the number increases, so does the amount of protection.

The second digit in the IP rating indicates how well the equipment is protected against water. Just as with the dust figure, a higher number means greater protection.

Inscale offers a selection of washdown scales that feature IP ratings of IP65, IP66, IP68 and IP69.

 

IWS Waterproof Scale - Inscale

IWS Waterproof Scale

 

Our own IWS waterproof scales features, durable stainless steel housing that has been completely sealed for ultimate water and dust protection. The IWS has built-in checkweighing applications with adjustable high and low limits as well as a vibrant LED display. This scale can easily fit on a worktop or workbench surface and is perfect for food production and general warehouse use.

SFB Stainless Steel Platform Scale - Kern

 Kern SFB Stainless Steel Platform Scale


With an IP65 rating, the kern SFB stainless steel platform scale is a good option for damp environments, such as those found in the food industry. The scale is made entirely from stainless steel and has a stainless steel load cell.

Adam Equipment Warrior Washdown Scale - Adam Equipment

Warrior Washdown Scales

 

The Adam Equipment Warrior washdown scale offers an IP66 rating and is well-suited for harsh settings. Featuring a fully welded grade 304 stainless steel base, top pan, pillar and indicator, the Warrior can be washed thoroughly with water during or after a task without the risk of damage. A sealed loadcell and loadcell protection chamber complete the protection of the product.

A&D SE High-Performance Washdown Scale - A&D

A&D SE High Performance Washdown Scales

 

An IP68 rating means the A&D SE high-performance washdown scale is dustproof, waterproof, and even submersible in water. Affordably priced, the SE features a n epoxy-treated, corrosion-resistant load cell that is waterproof. Painted mild steel basework and a stainless steel platform mean the SE can withstand demanding industrial settings where frequent cleaning is needed.

A&D SW High-Pressure Washdown Scales - A&D

A&D SW Series High Pressure Washdown Scales

 

The popular SW high-pressure washdown scale series comprises basework, indicator and complete scale range containing an IP69 protection level. Ideally suited for food-related weighing tasks, the SW can withstand regular cleaning with high-pressure hosing and hot water. A hermetically sealed stainless steel load cell offers premium protection against water intrusion. The polycarbonate/ABS head casing solves condensation issues that occur when stainless steel scales are used in humid locations or areas with a wide temperature range.