Help, My Scale isn’t Working…

In today’s article, we’re going to take a look at one of the subjects that we have discussed over the past few years several times….

Hey, my scale isn’t working. What should I do first? 

Obviously, it can be frustrating when a scale stops working or doesn’t work right out of the box. So what should you do when your scale isn’t working? Here is what we suggest.

First, slow down and take a moment and look over the scale. Make sure everything looks correct. Read over the operators manual (last resort, of course). Perhaps your issue is as simple as an overload stop, which is designed to protect load cells during shipping, has not been unscrewed. 

cheap floor scale

Depending on what type scale it is, there are a few things to look for. Make sure the power cord is securely plugged into the wall outlet. Is the scale level? If it’s a platform scale, is the cable connected from the digital display to the platform? Are there any cuts in the cable?

Believe it or not, turning an electronic scale off and waiting a couple of minutes, and then plugging the scale back into the wall will solve the problem more times than you think.

We work on a lot of commercial weighing scale systems, and they oftentimes are utilized in some rough environments. Unfortunately, dust, dirt and debris can build up in and around those industrial scales. When this happens, the scale may not read accurately or be able to settle on a certain weight amount. The display may show up and down weight fluctuations in the weight reading. or it might even display an error code on the weight indicator. So, if you are able to  check around or under your scale, that can be a good first step. Often if your scale is binding, you will see materials or dirt packed under the weigh bridge or near load cell stands.

We’ve seen floor scales that were pushed up against a wall and not weighing correctly. The solution was simply moving the scale away from the wall.

Hopefully something in the paragraphs above helped you out.  If not, your particular issue could be something else and you may have to get a factory trained scale technician to diagnose and fix. We recommend that you contact a local scale company who can diagnose the trouble. If you’re in Central North Carolina and need scale repair, please contact us by calling (919) 776-7737 or you can complete the form on our website. 

The Crucial Role that Scales Provide in Healthcare Settings

In the world of healthcare, precision is paramount. Every decision, every diagnosis, and every treatment plan relies on accurate data. One might not immediately think of scales as the heroes of healthcare, but they do play a pivotal role in maintaining patient health and safety. From monitoring a newborn’s growth to administering medication with precision, electronic weighing scales are unsung heroes in the healthcare field. In this article, we’ll explore the vital importance of scales in healthcare and how they contribute to patient well-being.

Back in the day, we only had a couple of scale brands to choose from when it came to medical scales. That’s not the case these days, we have multiple brands of scales to choose from.  A few of the brands of scales that we recommend are Seca, Rice Lake Healthweigh, Befour, Health-O-Meter Professional, and Detecto among others.

person weighing scale

1. Precise Medication Dosage

Imagine a scenario where a patient’s life depends on the precise administration of medication. Now, picture a nurse or doctor relying on guesswork instead of a high quality precision calibrated scale. It’s a troubling thought. Scales in healthcare ensure that medications are administered accurately, down to the milligram. In some cases, this accuracy could be a matter of life or death, particularly when dealing with potent medications or vulnerable patients.

2. Monitoring Patient Health

In healthcare, monitoring changes in a patient’s weight can be a key indicator of their overall health. Rapid weight loss or gain can signal underlying issues, such as heart problems, kidney dysfunction, or malnutrition. Infant scales, handrail scales, and wheelchair scales are just a few examples of specialized equipment used to monitor patients’ weight accurately. By tracking these changes precisely, healthcare professionals can catch potential problems early and provide timely interventions.

3. Nutritional Assessments

Proper nutrition is fundamental to recovery and overall health. In hospitals and long-term care facilities, nutritional assessments are routine. These assessments, often conducted by dietitians or nutritionists, rely heavily on portion control scales to measure ingredients, portion sizes, and the nutritional content of food. Ensuring that patients receive the right nutrients in the right amounts is essential for their recovery and well-being.

4. Infection Control

Infection control is a top priority in healthcare settings. Scales can contribute significantly to this by reducing the need for direct contact with patients. Bed scales, for example, allow for the measurement of patients’ weight without physically moving them, minimizing the risk of cross-contamination. In an era where infection control is paramount, these accurate scales play a crucial role in maintaining a safe healthcare environment.

5. Accurate Diagnosis

Scales are indispensable tools for diagnosing various medical conditions. One prime example is the Body Mass Index (BMI), which is calculated using a person’s weight and height. A deviation from the healthy BMI range can be an early warning sign for conditions like obesity, malnutrition, or even eating disorders. With accurate measurements, healthcare providers can make informed decisions about patient care and treatment plans.

6. Maternal and Child Health

In the realm of maternal and child health, person weight scales are indispensable. For instance, pediatricians closely monitor a child’s growth to ensure they are hitting developmental milestones. Accurate measurements of an infant’s weight, length, and head circumference are vital in assessing their overall health and development. Similarly, during pregnancy, monitoring maternal weight gain is essential for both the mother’s and the baby’s well-being.

7. Precision in Surgical Procedures

Surgery is a highly precise field in healthcare, and medical scales are essential here as well. Whether it’s weighing organs for transplantation or ensuring that surgical instruments are correctly calibrated, digital scales are integral to surgical procedures. Any deviation from accuracy could have dire consequences for patients undergoing surgery.

8. Managing Chronic Conditions

Patients with chronic conditions like diabetes often need to monitor their weight closely. Scales that sync with electronic health records or mobile apps can help patients and their healthcare providers track changes in weight over time, allowing for more effective disease management. This data can be critical in adjusting treatment plans and preventing complications.

9. Pharmacy Compounding

Pharmacists play a critical role in healthcare by compounding medications to meet specific patient needs. Precision is non-negotiable in this field, as even a slight error in medication dosage can have severe consequences. Pharmaceutical weighing equipment ensure that each compound is prepared accurately, guaranteeing patient safety and treatment effectiveness.

10. Research and Clinical Trials

In the pursuit of new medical treatments and therapies, research and clinical trials are essential. Weighing scales are instrumental in these endeavors, helping researchers measure the precise dosage of investigational drugs and assess the impact of treatments. The accuracy of scales can make or break the success of a clinical trial, potentially affecting millions of lives.

detecto healthysoles scale

Medical grade scales might not always take the spotlight in the healthcare field, but their importance cannot be overstated. From ensuring the correct dosage of life-saving medications to monitoring patient health, electronic scales play a vital role in the precision and accuracy of healthcare practices. The digital scales are the unsung, behind the scenes, items safeguarding patient well-being and contributing to the overall effectiveness of healthcare delivery. If you are interested in any of our various types of medical scales that we offer, be sure to contact our sales department (919) 776-7737 to discuss scale options and brands that we recommend. 


Paving the Path of Progress: Asphalt Producers, Weighing Equipment, and the Raleigh-Durham Roadway Boom

The Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina has experienced rapid population growth in recent years, with an influx of new residents seeking the region’s thriving job market, educational opportunities, and cultural attractions. To accommodate this exponential growth, a vast network of roads is being built, modified, or widened to connect communities and ensure efficient transportation.

However, this unprecedented demand for road infrastructure has put tremendous pressure on asphalt producers, who play a vital role in meeting the requirements for this expansive expansion.

weight indicator

The Asphalt Production Process

Asphalt, a durable and versatile material, is the backbone of modern road construction. It is made from a mixture of aggregates, binder, and filler materials. The primary aggregates used are crushed stone, gravel, and sand, while the binder is usually a petroleum-derived product. Asphalt production involves heating these ingredients to high temperatures to create a homogenous mixture, which is then laid on roads and compacted to form a smooth and sturdy surface.

The Importance of Asphalt Producers

Asphalt producers are the unsung heroes behind the seamless network of roads that underpin the Raleigh-Durham area’s growth. Their role in the development of the region cannot be overstated, as they are responsible for providing the essential building blocks for the transportation infrastructure that connects communities, facilitates commerce, and enhances overall quality of life.

Challenges Faced by Asphalt Producers

The increasing demand for new roads and road maintenance in the Raleigh-Durham area has brought both opportunities and challenges for asphalt producers. Meeting this high demand requires enhanced production capabilities, efficient logistics, and compliance with environmental regulations.

  1. Enhanced Production Capabilities: Asphalt producers have had to expand their production facilities and acquire state-of-the-art equipment to cope with the rising demand. Modern asphalt plants are designed to efficiently mix, heat, and store large quantities of asphalt, ensuring a continuous supply to meet the requirements of ongoing construction projects.

  2. Efficient Logistics: The supply chain management for asphalt production is crucial to ensuring a steady flow of raw materials and finished products. Producers must strategize to optimize transportation routes and minimize delays, guaranteeing that construction projects remain on schedule.

  3. Environmental Compliance: As the demand for asphalt rises, so does the need to address environmental concerns related to its production. Asphalt plants are subject to environmental regulations that govern emissions and the responsible use of natural resources. Producers are embracing eco-friendly practices, such as using reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) and warm-mix asphalt technologies to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

how does a load cell work

The Role of Scales in Asphalt Production

Scales play a vital role in the overall asphalt production process, ensuring accuracy and precision in the mixing of raw materials. Asphalt producers use scales at various stages of production:

  1. Aggregate Measurement: The precise measurement of aggregates is critical, as the right proportions directly influence the quality and durability of the final asphalt mix. Advanced weighing systems and load cells help ensure that the correct amount of aggregates is used for each batch, resulting in consistent and reliable asphalt.

  2. Binder and Filler Measurement: Similarly, the accurate measurement of binders and fillers is crucial to achieving the desired asphalt properties. Scales equipped with modern technology facilitate the controlled addition of these components, ensuring uniformity and adherence to specified standards.

  3. Quality Control: Scales also play a pivotal role in quality control during the production process. Producers regularly sample asphalt mixes and use scales to verify whether the mixture adheres to predetermined specifications. This meticulous quality control ensures that the final product meets the required standards for safety and performance.

The Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina is experiencing a remarkable period of growth and development, necessitating an extensive network of roads to accommodate the rising population. Asphalt producers are at the heart of this endeavor, working tirelessly to meet the demands of road construction. 

As the roadways continue to expand, the importance of scales in the asphalt production process becomes increasingly evident. These precision instruments play a crucial role in ensuring the consistency, quality, and safety of the asphalt mix used to pave the path of progress in the Raleigh-Durham area. With continued innovation and dedication from asphalt producers, the region’s transportation infrastructure will remain robust and responsive to the needs of its ever-growing population.

Unboxing the Challenges: Navigating the Dimensions of Shipping Boxes and Pallets

In today’s globalized world, shipping boxes and pallets have become an essential part of our daily lives. From online shopping to business logistics, these containers play a crucial role in moving goods from one place to another.

However, as convenience and efficiency have increased, so have the challenges faced by customers when dealing with freight companies. One of the most significant challenges is the shift towards using dimensional measurements in addition to weight when determining shipping costs. This article explores the various hurdles customers face daily, and how they can navigate through them to optimize their shipping experiences.

nci shipping scales by Avery Weigh-Tronix

The Dimensional Dilemma

Traditionally, shipping costs were determined solely based on weight. You placed your box on your Mettler Toledo BC60 and the weight displayed in your shipping software. It was easy! 

However, with advancements in technology and a growing focus on sustainability, freight companies have moved towards utilizing dimensional weight (DIM weight) calculations. DIM weight considers not only the actual weight of the package but also its dimensions to estimate the space it occupies in the carrier’s vehicle or aircraft. This means that even if a package is relatively light, its large size might result in higher shipping charges due to the wasted space it takes up in transit.

Customers are often caught unaware by this shift and may receive unexpected bills if they fail to measure their boxes accurately or overlook the significance of the dimensions. Furthermore, when shipping multiple items together, the combined dimensions can impact the total shipping cost significantly. If you’re shipping a decent amount of boxes or pallets each day, you’re going to get tired of taking out the tape measure or the yard stick.  You need a more automated solution for obtaining your dim weights.  

Automated Solutions

To ease the burden of manually calculating DIM weight and reduce the chances of human error, customers can leverage automation. Integrating shipping software that incorporates dimension measuring capabilities can streamline the entire process, providing real-time calculations and ensuring accurate billing.

Automated solutions can also help customers compare shipping rates between different carriers, allowing them to choose the most cost-effective option for their specific needs. This level of efficiency and transparency not only enhances customer satisfaction but also boosts overall productivity.

dim weight scale

How Dimensioners Benefit Shippers

When shippers use an automatic dimensioner, they experience fewer invoice corrections, which saves time and money. Shippers can also use a Transportation Management System (TMS) to provide an eBOL with accurate data from a Legal for Trade dimensioner and scale save on freight rates. A TMS offers the carrier data transparency before pickup to help with load planning.

Accurate weights and dimensions are essential to ensure your invoice will match the original carrier quote. Because LTL carriers also rely on Legal for Trade measurement systems, using freight dimensioning systems in your facility can help everyone ensure correct freight classification.

By choosing a dimensioning system that includes high-resolution cameras, you will have images of freight as it leaves your facility, documenting its condition and verifying it was properly packaged and wrapped. This will allow you to hold your LTL carriers accountable for any damage to your freight.

Rice Lake Weighing Systems developed iDimension® Flex Series automatic dimensioners to help shippers prevent invoice corrections. A Legal for Trade dimensioner and scale is the best way to safeguard against reweighs, reclasses and unexpected chargebacks from LTL carriers. The economical iDimension Flex is designed for shippers—it is affordable, easy to install and maintain, and has a full integration toolkit to connect with your network.

The iDimension Flex is designed to fit nearly any shipping environment. It can be installed as a free-standing unit or suspended from the ceiling and mounted over a shipping scale, conveyor or pallet stretch wrapper. With the iDimension Flex, you can easily organize your shipping department to weigh, wrap and dimension freight in one efficient step. The iDimension Flex accurately measures your outbound freight, simplifying eBOL processes and increasing the trust LTL carriers have in your measurements.

Accurate Measuring – A Necessity

To overcome the dimensional measurement challenge, customers must prioritize accurate measuring of their shipping boxes and pallets. Investing in a reliable measuring tool, such as a tape measure or a dimensional weight calculator, can save them from unnecessary expenses. It is vital to measure the length, width, and height of the package, ensuring accuracy to the nearest inch or centimeter.

Some freight companies may also apply additional surcharges if the dimensions are not provided correctly, leading to further complications and financial strain for the customer. Hence, attentiveness to accurate measurements is crucial in avoiding billing disputes and promoting transparent shipping practices.

Packaging Optimization

Aside from accurate measurements, optimizing packaging is another way to navigate the challenges presented by dimensional weight. Selecting appropriate box sizes, eliminating excess void fill materials, and securing the contents efficiently can significantly impact DIM weight calculations.

Customers should consider using custom-sized boxes that snugly fit their products, reducing the amount of empty space within the package. Additionally, choosing lightweight but sturdy packaging materials can also help strike a balance between protection and weight reduction.

This is something we have worked on over the past few years and it has absolutely saved us (and our customers) money.

Collaboration and Communication

To enhance the shipping process, customers must establish clear lines of communication with their freight companies. Inquiring about their dimensional weight calculation methods, applicable surcharges, and any other cost-related factors will enable customers to make informed decisions and prevent unwelcome surprises in the final billing.

Additionally, maintaining open channels of communication allows customers to negotiate better shipping terms, especially for regular or bulk shipments. Building a healthy partnership with the freight company can lead to mutually beneficial outcomes, fostering a smoother shipping experience overall.

Education and Awareness

An essential aspect of overcoming the challenges of shipping boxes and pallets is fostering education and awareness among customers. Many individuals and businesses are still unfamiliar with the concept of DIM weight and its implications. Providing relevant information and resources on websites, customer portals, and through customer service representatives can empower clients to take the necessary steps to optimize their shipping processes.

Freight companies can also conduct workshops, webinars, or tutorials to educate their customers on best practices for measuring, packing, and shipping items. In the long run, informed customers will not only benefit from cost savings but also contribute to sustainability efforts by reducing the carbon footprint associated with shipping inefficiencies.

As a society, we probably ship more boxes and pallets than ever before. It’s important to find various ways to reduce the cost of moving these boxes from point A to point B.  By embracing accurate measuring techniques, optimizing packaging, fostering communication, educating themselves, and adopting automated solutions, customers can navigate these challenges effectively. In doing so, they can not only reduce unnecessary expenses and billing disputes but also contribute to a more sustainable and efficient shipping industry.

The Peril of Monopoly: The Dangers of Choosing an Industrial Scale Provider who Basically Only Recommends One Scale Brand

In the world of industry and commerce, precision measurement and weighing accuracy are paramount, making industrial scales and laboratory balances an indispensable tool in many industries. When it comes to selecting a reliable provider for your weighing needs, many local businesses seek convenience by opting for a one-stop-shop that sells scales and offers calibration and service support. And, often folks search for old and familiar scale brand they may have heard of years ago.

However, one mistake that some customers make involves choosing a scale supplier who essentially is only offering one brand of scale 99% of the time. This cozy relationship with a sole brand may appear convenient on the surface, but it comes with a range of potential pitfalls that businesses should be wary of. Do the terms Protected Territories, Limited Competition, and High Prices sound familiar? 

This article explores the perils of such an arrangement and underscores the importance of keeping an open mind when it comes to selecting a local industrial scale provider in your area.

1. Limited Product Options:

Relying on an industrial scale provider who predominantly offers one brand of scales leaves your business with limited options. Each industry has unique requirements, and no single scale brand can cater to the diverse needs of every enterprise. By restricting yourself to just one brand of scales, you risk overlooking better-suited alternatives that might provide more accurate readings, advanced features, or even more cost-effectiveness. Opting to work with a local scale company with a wide array of scale options ensures you can find the perfect match for your business requirements.

2. Bias and Unreliable Recommendations:

The inherent conflict of interest in exclusively recommending one scale brand raises questions about the objectivity and credibility of the provider’s suggestions. Is the recommendation driven by the best interest of the client, or is it motivated by financial gains or meeting sales quotas from promoting a particular brand? A biased recommendation might lead to investing in scales that are not truly suitable for your operations, leading to suboptimal performance, increased maintenance costs, or even safety hazards.

3. Lack of Customization and Product Flexibility:

Industrial operations vary widely, and a one-size-fits-all approach to scales simply won’t suffice. By relying on a local scale provider who predominantly deals with one brand, you may face limitations in customizing the scales to match your specific requirements. Customization could involve factors such as scale capacity, platform size, and specialized features, which are critical to ensuring optimal performance and efficient workflow.

There could be situations where your number one scale brand might be a good choice for the scale platform but the scale controller might be a different brand. Is the scale company willing to use another brand?

4. Inadequate Support and Service:

Calibration and regular maintenance are vital to the accurate functioning of industrial scales. Choosing a local scale sales and service provider that primarily deals with one scale brand may limit your access to reliable service and support. They may lack the expertise to handle other scale brands effectively, resulting in subpar calibration or repairs. In contrast, a diversified local scale provider (like Central Carolina Scale) is more likely to have a skilled team capable of servicing a wide range of scale models efficiently.

5. Competitive Pricing:

Monopoly situations can also sometimes lead to inflated pricing. With limited options and no direct competition, the scale provider may not have any incentives to offer competitive prices. As a result, your business might end up paying more for a scale that could be obtained at a better price elsewhere.

high quality scales and weighing equipment

Final Thoughts:

Choosing an industrial scale provider is a crucial decision that directly impacts the efficiency and accuracy of your operations. While the convenience of an all-in-one provider might be tempting, the dangers of opting for one who predominantly deals with a single brand of scales cannot be ignored. The limited product options, protected territories limiting competition, biased recommendations, and inadequate support could all hamper your business’s growth and success.

Instead, we recommend working with a scale company like ours. At Central Carolina Scale, we have good working relationships with many different scale manufacturers. If a customer approaches us and asks for a product or solution for their weighing, we are going to base our product recommendations off things like past success, proven products, overall value, etc… We typically provide multiple reputable choices to customers to consider.

In our experience, rarely is one scale manufacturer the best choice for everything. Some manufacturer really good truck scales. Some manufacturer easy to use digital weight indicators. In fact, we often provide scale systems to customers that have one brand of scale platform and a different brand of digital weight indicator. Most of the time we do that because we’re trying to provide the customer with the best overall scale equipment for their needs.

How Much Does a Waterproof Scale Cost?

Today we’re going to discuss how much a wash down scale costs. Wait, is it waterproof or wash down? First, a little disclaimer. Some customers like to call these scales “waterproof” which is why we use it in our title. However, that term is not quite accurate. The scales we sell are called “wash down safe” and typically have an IP rating usually somewhere between IP66 and IP69K.

cw-90x check weigh scale for commercial fishing

Stainless Steel Washdown Scales

Basically a washdown scale is designed to be water resistant and easily cleaned after use. The components of a washdown scale are typically constructed of stainless steel. In choosing a new washdown scale for your business, the quality of the components often plays a huge role in the cost.

Stainless Steel Scale Platform Costs

For example, in a standard bench scale, one way to lower the cost would be to use a stainless steel cover and a painted steel scale base. Another way to lower the cost is to use an aluminum load cell instead of stainless steel cell or a hermetically sealed load cell. If you’re in a food processing setting, you should probably be using a stainless steel scale system designed to handle the rigors of daily cleaning. The scale base or platform is available in various sizes and capacities. Continue reading

Should You Choose an ISO Certified Scale Company?

If you do any research on the internet about scale companies and ISO, then most of the time you will only read about how great the certification is and how that is the only way to go. Well, we are going to provide you with a different point of view on the question, should you choose an ISO certified scale company?

The International Organization for Standardization is an international independent, non-governmental organization with a membership of 168 national standards bodies. Their history can be traced back to 1946. The organization develops and publishes international standards. The purpose of achieving ISO certification is to ensure the safety and quality of the product or service. 

There is certainly an argument to be made for the benefit of a scale manufacturer (or any manufacturer) to have quality guidelines and to be ISO compliant. In this situation, it likely makes really good sense. In fact, most of our top scale manufacturers that we offer are ISO 9001. It is a good thing for companies with a lot of employees or companies that build things to a consistent quality level. It’s essentially all about documenting your process and training your staff to follow that process so you produce a consistent product.

However, for a small scale service company with less than ten employees…. does it really make sense to spend thousands of dollars just to have an independent group “approve” or “accredit” how you’ve been successfully operating your business for over forty years?  

pharma scales for accurate weighing


The ISO certification for scale companies is referred to as ISO/IEC 17025. In order to earn ISO 17025 certification, an industrial scale company must survive an accreditation process from a certified third-party organization that is often expensive and time consuming. And, that’s just the approval, the scale company will also be evaluated every few years in order to renew their certification.

If a scale company has earned ISO 17025 certification they can then boast about their ability to provide high quality precise testing and calibration results and how they can follow a quality management system. 

Some of the external organizations that provide this certification to scale companies are the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA) and the Perry Johnson Laboratory Accreditation (PJLA). The process of becoming ISO certified takes time and costs money and of course there is a renewal process that we mentioned earlier which also costs money.  

sources for the best counting scalesale


One area that is often misunderstood is what customers require or don’t require. Often a customer will be under the impression they can only use a ISO 17025 certified scale company, as specified by their internal quality manual. 

The fact is that scale companies are not required to have ISO 17025 accreditation. There are some folks who will argue that the ISO accreditation provides extra credibility to the scale company and that having an ISO 17025 certificate of calibration displays superior quality control, as opposed to getting a non-ISO 17025 certified calibration of your scale.  You’re also likely to pay a higher hourly rate for this type of scale service as well, even though the scale company is using the same test weights as any other legitimate scale company.


So you could almost compare three different categories: (1) ISO scale companies, (2) scale companies who achieved ISO and didn’t renew (but still employ some of the positives w/o the recurring fees) and (3) those that are truly non-ISO scale companies.

But for simplicity, let’s take a moment to truly compare an ISO certified scale company versus a non-ISO scale company.

The following are important points to remember. You can also argue that a scale company, whether ISO or not, is using: the same Class F weights. Those same test weights are tested at the state lab each year (traceability to NIST) for both scale companies. Both scale companies have licensed scale technicians. Both scale companies are documenting the results of the scale check online using Pass / Fail calibration software with tolerances, etc…. So, we have to ask the question…. What exactly are you paying extra $$$ for?

Let’s put this in table form just to make sure you see and understand this.

  ISO Scale Co. Non-ISO Scale Co.
Wts Certified? State Lab Yearly (traceable) State Lab Yearly (traceable)
Technicians State Licensed State Licensed
Cal Software Pass/Fail w/ Tolerances Pass/Fail w/ Tolerances
Hourly Charges Typically ~ 25-50% higher Typically ~ 25-50% lower

So, once again we have to ask the question…. What exactly are you paying higher hourly rates for?    Continue reading