Need to use your balance but missing some tools?
If you are weighing samples and need a quick fix, we’ve got you covered. Whether you want to stop static, filter something but ran out of filters, or can’t find the weighing boats or scoops, here are three quick tips to keep your science moving forward. We don’t recommend you using these all of the time, only when you are in a bind. For confidence in accuracy and to promote lab safety, use dedicated laboratory tools designed for your needs on a daily basis.
Lab hacks for weighing samples
Static is annoying. It can provide inaccurate results when using your balance. Wipe down your area with static wipes if needed. No static-specific consumables in your lab? Use a wet lab wipe with methanol, wipe near the scale, and allow it to dry. Anti-static products are available if this is a critical issue for your lab or cleanroom.
Lab funnels are necessary items to help make you more efficient. Transferring liquids without a funnel is not an easy task and could cause unsafe working conditions if you spill something. A coffee filter is a great hack, but not a permanent solution. Instead of using a coffee filter, stock up on lab funnels. There are a wide variety of shapes, sizes and materials to meet your needs.
The pipette hack is a good option when you have nothing else to use, but can be a small option. Stock up on weighing dishes and always be prepared for your next project. Weighing dishes come in glass or plastic, in a variety of materials, shapes and sizes. When selecting a material, make sure your sample is compatible with the material of the dish or boat. Use the chemical compatibility database to make sure you choose the right weighing dish.
It’s always beneficial to stock up on filters, but when you can’t find one, a coffee filter will work. Filter papers, or membranes, come in various grades depending on the application. When selecting a filter paper, determine the particle size to be retained or filtered. Assess the chemical compatibility of the membrane with the liquid or gas to be filtered. Depending on the procedure performed, the filter paper color and surface pattern may be important.