Just like a refrigerant leak detector, it’s absolutely essential for an HVAC technician to have the best refrigerant scale in their tool bag. They are there so that you can record precise readings of the amount of refrigerants you are using for refrigeration units.
The most accurate reading is incredibly valuable as it will ensure the correct amount of refrigerant is being charged or recovered from the compressor so that your customers can be billed appropriately and to keep the system working at optimal, energy efficient performance levels.
That’s why when it comes to the best refrigerant scale, only the best should be considered. Due to the variation that’s available, “the best refrigerant scale” is not always easy to find. It does also slightly come down to your preferences and what’s suitable for you and the systems you work with.
Take a look at the reviews below and the buyer’s guide that follows to give yourself a better idea on how your choice of refrigerant scale can make your job easier, more precise and ultimately more efficient.
*All links above will take you to the latest prices on Amazon.com or you can read our in-depth refrigerant scale reviews below.
One of the best refrigerant scale models offered by Robinair is among the highest rated scales available and there’s no question as to why that is.
It’s reliable, accurate, portable and durable and as previous buyers have stated, it will last you for years to come without breaking down like lesser products seem to do.
It’s total capacity is 100lbs (50kg) which isn’t the most that the market has to offer but given that it has great features such as a crystal clear, easy to read display with three display modes and auto zero, it makes up for the lower capacity in user friendliness.
It works with all refrigerants and also displays the measurements in three different metrics; pounds, ounces and kilograms so that you don’t have to keep getting the calculator out to convert the units for recording purposes.
The control pan has a stand and a hanging hook that gives it a variety of uses making it great value for money and the display is powered by a 9V battery. It has a fairly accurate resolution of 2g and so there is little chance of mistakes occurring with this awesome bit of kit.
This particular refrigerant scale is not as accurate as the previous having a resolution of 0.25oz (7g) as opposed to 2g.
It also comes with a nylon carrying case instead if a hard plastic one like the Robinair scale does. But a major redeeming feature of this scale is that the control panel is wireless.
The wireless control panel has many advantages, firstly, wires get in the way of everything no matter what tool you are using.
Secondly, it allows you to operate the scale completely hands free and also lastly it’s got a 100ft wireless reach so you can operate it form the next room if you needed to.
The base is quite large too and has a non-slip surface, making it safer and easier to weight larger tanks. It has a handy tare feature which also remembers the last zero point even after powering down and it has an auto shutoff to conserve battery life.
The control takes a 9v battery and the base takes 6 AA batteries which are all included within your purchase. The control is also nice and easy to read due to its backlit screen meaning you don’t need to keep tilting it to try and get a reading.
The F2C refrigerant scale is an industry standard but is brilliant because it has a maximum capacity of 220lbs (100kg)!
It’s also exactly what you need and that is accurate with an increment of +/- 0.5% of the reading and a resolution of 5g.
Still not as accurate as the Robinair though.
This scale comes with a few purchase option, you can buy the scale on its own, a manifold gauge on its own or the scale and gauge as a set which is a fantastic value bundle!
The platform of the scale is slip resistant and of a standard size to reduce the risk of spillages in the workplace.
Just like the Robinair scale it displays all three units: ounces, kilograms and pounds for your ease of use. The LCD display is backlit and clear to read at any given time, the control panel remembers your readings too for when it is tared.
There are many other features for this scale for you to check it; it’s size, user interface and accuracy makes it a must-have tool for your HVAC tool bag and it works particularly well for charging split units.
Another one of the best refrigerant scale choices for your HVAC needs is offered by Kazyvacu.
This simple and affordable unit is neatly packaged in a hard plastic carrying case and reads just as accurately as the previous product.
It shows measurements in pounds, kilograms and ounces and has an accuracy of +/- 0.5% of the reading and a resolution of 5g. It has a maximum capacity of 220lbs built in memory and non-slip base.
There’s not much different between this scale and the previous except from the color and previous buyer reviews, as this choice has a few more that are negative. Other than that, this makes a great value and affordable choice for those who want to save money.
What are Refrigerant Scales For?
Refrigerant scales are an essential tool, used by HVAC technicians when they install and service refrigerant containing HVAC units. The scales help the tech to determine accurately how much refrigerant they place into the unit (charge) or how much they remove (recover)
By doing this they can make sure that they are putting in the optimal amount the system needs for energy efficient performance. Not too much or too little which can put strain on the compressor; reducing its lifespan.
The technician can also then give a precise bill to the customer and also keep tidy and accurate records for their company.
The tank which contains the refrigerant is measured before charging or recovery, it is then tared and when the refrigerant is added into the unit, the tank can then be measured again to obtain the amount that was added.
The same goes for when refrigerants are removed from the system, it’s just that the second measurement is taken as the refrigerant is being recovered from rather than added to the unit.
What Makes the Best Refrigerant Scale?
The best refrigerant scale is a piece of equipment that most technicians expect them to last for years and so of course, you at least want it to be durable; resistant to physical knocks and light water damage.
But what should you look for specifically when buying the best refrigerant scale? The following are what we look for to determine the best and is why the above products made it onto our review list.
The accuracy is the most important characteristic of a scale because you want the measurement to be as exact as it possibly can. If the accuracy isn’t up to scratch then it’s likely that you’re either over charging customers or under charging them and that’s no good either way!
Platform Size and Maximum Capacity
A large enough platform makes it easier for you to fir the tanks safely on the scale and will provide a more accurate measurement than if the platform was too small. Depending on the demands of the jobs you perform, larger capacities may be an advantage too.
The controls for the scales are never over complicated but the buttons should be responsive and easy to read. The screen itself should also be clear with the digits and settings being easily distinguishable from each other.
Having extra features is always a bonus, especially if they make your life easier and safer.
Things like non-slip platforms, extra batteries, wireless controls and displaying all of the units of measurement make the devices a lot more valuable compared to their competition on the market as it goes to improve the experience that you have with the product.
It’s your choice on which of these products is the best refrigerant scale for you, pay close to attention to the reviews made by the previous buyers on the product pages (the negative and the positive) as they hold a lot of valuable information about the product that could save you money.
Remember that an EPA section 608 license is required by federal law for anybody to legally handle refrigerant chemicals. It’s there to ensure a high standard of practise and to protect the environment and so find out about how to obtain one with our HVAC Certification Guide.
About the Author
Dave Miller is a HVAC technician with over 10 years in the industry. Dave created HeatTalk with the ambition for it to become a resource for individuals looking for answers, whether they be a layman, student or a professional.