Considering how important moisture analyzers can be–especially for the pharmaceutical, food, R& D, packaging and manufacturing industries–it’s imperative that you choose the right type of device. 

The good news is that moisture analyzing technology has improved by leaps and bounds; the bad news, however, is that not all moisture analyzers provide the same amount of quality and dependability.

In choosing the right type of moisture analyzer, first of all recognize that “near infrared reflectance” or NIR technology is one of the best options available.

Secondly, you need to know what to look for since not every unit out there offers the same bells and whistles.  Here are the most basic features & qualities to look for:

  1. Durability & high-rated quality, preferably “packaged” in a sleek, compact design
  2. Precise & consistently-dependable results for a wide variety of applications:  plastics, food, textile, wastewater, etc.
  3. Low-gram threshold weighing capacity & moisture readability (e.g., 0.0001 grams, 0.001%, respectively)
  4. High drying temp capacity (e.g. up to 200 degrees C)
  5. Ample availability of accessories:  sample pads, aluminum dishes, printers, etc.
  6. A good manufacturer’s warranty
  7. A high-precision balance (especially for exceptionally-low moisture content & weight loss detection applications)
  8. Easy portability
  9. Proven reliability under different manufacturing & production settings
  10. Meets requirements of specific regulations for your industry or facility
  11. Uses easy-to-dispose of moisture pans (best if made of aluminum & bought in bulk)
  12. Easy-to-read, well-placed LED displays
  13. A balance that is easily programmed
  14. An easy-to-follow (preferably with illustrations) operational manual or user’s guide
  15. A display panel efficiently showing status updates on procedures the device follows
  16. Instructions on how to regularly re-calibrate the unit, especially for devices moved around regularly
  17. A product line catering to different customers’ unique & changing needs  in capacity, electrical demands, job specifications, special site accommodations, etc.
  18. Easy to clean & maintain
  19. Good uniform heat distribution technology 
  20. Reliable non-sample-destructive measurements—i.e., ability to assess moisture content minus the “wet chemistry”)
  21. Ultra low light spectroscopy
  22. Good product reviews & independent-organization referrals
  23. Good work station/site adaptability (e.g., air purging, external housing, cooling system, etc.) track record
  24. Hassle-free repair services/options
  25. Easily-accessible & cleanable sample chambers

 While NIR Moisture Analyzer technology keeps getting better and better, the most basic features to look for in these products remain the same.  Ultimately, you want a unit that will do what it’s supposed to do utilizing the least amount of time, energy requirements, maintenance/repair demands and staff training.

While no NIR Moisture Analyzer out there is perfect, the best ones can not only save you money and pay for themselves within a short period of time, but they can also help you meet industry/government regulations, provide optimally-configured products & services, meet deadlines, and raise the bar on product safety, quality and dependability.