Commercial Scale Buying Guide
When you are the owner of a business such as a restaurant or a café, a weighing scale is something that you will always need to purchase at some point. You may need to weigh that big batch that just came in today – or you may want to weigh the amount of salami that goes on your restaurant’s “House Special Pizza.”
Still, purchasing a good commercial weighing scale might not be such an easy thing to do, as there are many options to go for. This is why you need to carefully consider the unit that you choose – depending on the items that you plan on scaling.
If you are looking for a good scale to add to the kitchen of your restaurant, here is some information that might help you make a good choice.
What Are Commercial Weighing Scales?
A commercial weighing scale, as its name might suggest, is a scale that will allow you to weigh anything in the commercial area. For example, if you own a restaurant, this scale will allow you to weigh anything from small to high amounts of food.
In a way, commercial scales do not look that different from residential scales – unless they are high-volume and are obviously bigger in size. A smaller commercial scale, on the other hand, can look like any other home scale – but it was meant for commercial use. This means that these units will not “crack” under pressure and can be used from morning until evening in a high-paced restaurant.
When it comes to their construction and the way they work, commercial scales are not any different from residential weighing scales. The only difference might stay in the quality of the pieces used, as a means of ensuring the durability of the unit.
To make them easier to use in a commercial environment, these units were also made to be portable and easy to use. They are generally designed to weigh items in a quick manner, showing readings right away so that the workflow is not affected.
Commercial weighing scales can handle both consistent weighings of small items, but also the weighing of larger products. If the environment that you handle your business in is particularly large, then you might benefit more from an industrial weighing scale – since it can handle much more weight.
Types of Commercial Weighing Scales
Commercial weighing scales are broken down into two subcategories that you might want to keep in mind.
Portion Control Scales
Portion control scales are generally used in the kitchen of a restaurant, and they can help you serve consistent portions of food with every order. This way, you will not have any embarrassing incidents such as serving a client a smaller steak than the one you have served to a previous customer.
These scales can be digital or traditional. However, the digital scales are the most popular, particularly because they show exact readings – up to the last gram. These are a great option if the readings need to respect exact quantities.
Receiving scales are used mostly when you get a certain order for the restaurant. For example, let us say that you need a certain amount of flour every day to bake pastries; you will need to make provisions of flour for a few days or so.
The receiving scale will allow you to measure exactly how much product you have received. This way, you will be able to create an inventory and be certain that what you have received is exactly your order. These types of commercial weighing scales have been created to withstand heavy amounts of products.
Tips for Selecting a Commercial Weighing Scale
When selecting a commercial weighing scale, there are a few tips that you might want to keep in mind. This will ensure that the weighing scale you chose will actually be useful instead of just staying there, catching dust.
What do you plan on using the scale on? Will you be using it together with other pieces of equipment? Where is this unit most suitable to install?
You might also want to do some research on the brand. Some brands are more qualitative than others, whereas other products provide better results for a different purpose. This is why you always need to be careful what brand you want to purchase – and whether it has good reviews or not.
Eurodib is fairly popular among customers, mainly since they produce long-lasting commercial weighing scales. Ohaus, on the other hand, are also fairly popular – and the line of products they cover can handle anything from 6 to 66 lbs. However, our opinion on which brand has the best all-around scales is Penn Scale.
Not everyone focuses on readability as they do on other aspects – but this is one factor that should definitely be kept in mind. When a lot of precision is required, you will need a scale that has at least decent readability. The more details it gives off, and the easier you can see it on the screen, the better the investment will be.
You may want to get a balance or a scale that offers even more accurate results than what you actually need. For example, if you need a commercial weighing scale that handles 0.1g, you might want to look for a unit that has 0.01g readability.
You might want to think about how much you want to weigh with each batch. Each unit will have its own maximum capacity that it can handle – which is why, if you want to weigh a larger quantity, you should look for higher-capacity units.
Different types of commercial weighing scales will come with different weighing capacities. Depending on the type that you purchase, you might get an idea of how much you should be able to purchase – which is why you should always read the product specifications before making your purchase.
|Type of Commercial Weighing Scale||Capacity|
|Portion Control Scales||6-13 pounds|
|Receiving Scales||26-33 pounds|
|Industrial Receiving Scales||66-110 pounds|
Some receiving scales can be used when it comes to portion control as well. Bear in mind that the higher the capacity, the less accurate its readability might be.
Think about the unit that you will need when weighing your products. Do you want the results to be displayed in kilograms, or does your restaurant use pounds as a way of measuring the quantity?
Similarly, you might want to think about the type of product that you wish to weigh. If the product that you want to weigh is in liquid form, then you will want a device that displays in liters or fluid ounces.
Most high-tech commercial weighing scales will allow you to choose the measuring unit through the settings. This can be a great feature if you want to weigh both fluid and solid products in your kitchen.
The size of your unit is important for two reasons – the first one is whether it will fit on the kitchen counter or not. If you own a café with small counter space, then a large-sized commercial weighing scale might not be the smartest purchase to make. Before buying your product, make sure to measure exactly how much space you have on the counter. This will make sure that the scale will actually fit on the counter.
The size of the pan/platform is just as important as the size of the unit itself. Thus, the size of the platform has to be wide enough to accommodate whichever type of product you plan on weighing.
Ideally, when purchasing the commercial scale, make sure that the package you are weighing does not exceed 1/3 of the size of the scale, regardless of its direction. Not only will you risk damaging the unit, but you may not be able to get accurate readings either.
Other Considerations with Commercial Scales
When purchasing your commercial weighing scale, there are a few other considerations that you may want to remember. All of these may help you purchase a product that is suitable for your establishment.
- Does it have special calibration needs? Some units have internal calibration, whereas others have external calibration. Each will feature different techniques.
- Does it have a dynamic weighing feature? This can be fairly useful if you are weighing livestock or other items that move during the weighing.
- Does the weighing scale require you to go through below-balance weighing?
- Does the product allow you to collect the data via USB? This might be a fairly convenient feature for when you are doing the inventory.
- Does it work on batteries, or do you have to plug it? Some modern weighing scales can be connected to an outlet so that you won’t have to continuously change batteries. However, some find battery-powered scales to be more convenient, particularly if you do not have access to a power source nearby.
The more extra features a weighing scale has, the more expensive it might prove to be. Obviously, a larger-capacity weighing scale will be more expensive than a smaller-capacity one – which is why it might not be a smart decision to purchase a high-capacity unit “just in case you need it.”
Commercial Scale Maintenance Tips
The more you use a weighing scale in an establishment, the more it may suffer from usage damage. Here are some weighing tips that you might want to remember when dealing with such units.
Keep the Unit Free of Dirt
When you are continuously weighing products, it’s understandable that dirt, slime, or any kind of debris can accumulate on the weighing scale. The more you leave it there, the more it will solidify – making it more difficult to clean when the time comes.
Plus, a dirty weighing scale is not only a health hazard, but it can also affect the reading of your scale. The more debris you have on the scale, the more it will show on the display. Plus, the slime can seep into the weighing scale’s system, causing its internal circuit to go haywire.
Keep It Grounded
The more your commercial weighing scale wiggles around, the faster it might become damaged and provide you bad readings. This is why you need to ensure that the surface it lays on is completely flat and that the scale won’t slip away when you are weighing a particular item.
If needed, you might want to screw the scale into the surface so that it doesn’t start “walking.” This is particularly necessary when it comes to weighing dynamic products.
Check the weighing scale at least once every week for any irregularities. If anything seems out of place – you notice corrosion or you see signs of wear and tear – you might want to consider having the unit repaired. Leaving it unattended will not only affect the reading, but it can also affect the product.
Make the Necessary Adjustments
No matter how efficient and qualitative a commercial weighing scale might be, it will still need to be calibrated every so often. You should test it at least twice a year with certified weights to see if it needs calibrating. This can be done either by you or a professional.
Final Remarks towards Commercial Scales
Commercial weighing scales are necessary for every establishment since they allow you to stick to the rules and provide the customers what they have paid for. Plus, they will help you keep your establishment organized so that you do not have any blank spots.
There are many good models out there, which can be used for a variety of reasons – from weighing a portion of soup to weighing the large sugar shipment that just came in. Regardless of the one that you purchase, make sure that it suits your purpose.