Buying Lab Equipment? 10 Factors to Consider

Buying Lab Equipment? 10 Factors to Consider

The success of scientific research hinges on having the right tools at your disposal. Investing in the right lab equipment is crucial for achieving accurate results, ensuring efficient workflows, and ultimately, advancing scientific knowledge. 

Whether you're setting up a new laboratory or upgrading your existing equipment, making informed decisions about equipment purchases is a no brainer. This article will  cover the key factors you should carefully consider before finalising your purchase.

Prioritising Your Budget

Undoubtedly, the most significant factor influencing your choices will be your budget. Lab equipment can range in price from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on complexity and features. The first step to achieving your research goals is making sure that you have the right equipment for the right job. 

Investigating the average prices for various options and comparing the prices offered by various vendors can assist you in discovering the best value for your money. Remember, while budget constraints are real, compromising on quality can lead to costly delays and compromised research data in the long run.

Choose Brand and Quality

When selecting lab equipment, prioritising brands with proven reliability and a strong track record is crucial. Opting for renowned manufacturers ensures you receive equipment built for performance and longevity. Considering factors like customer service reputation and warranty coverage is essential in making sure they’ll support you throughout your equipment's lifespan. 

While cost-effectiveness is important, remember that cheaper options often come at the expense of quality and reliability, potentially leading to consequences from equipment failure, such as delays, data loss, and even compromising your safety, which can far outweigh initial cost savings.

Top 5 Lab Equipment Suppliers in Australia

Lab equipment can be expensive due to its sophisticated functionalities and high-quality materials. So, it's wise to invest only in equipment from well-established, reputable, and trustworthy brands. This ensures you get equipment built to last and delivers reliable, consistent results.

Here are some of the most trusted brands in the industry:

  1. Science Equip
  2. Thermoline Scientific
  3. Westlab Supplies
  4. Banksia Scientific Company
  5. Fisher Biotec

lab equipment suppliers

1. Science Equip

Established in 2001, Science Equip is a Melbourne-based lab equipment supplier serving the Australian research community for over two decades. They are ISO 9001:2015 certified, assuring a commitment to quality management systems. Their extensive product portfolio covers microscopes, centrifuges, analytical instruments, safety supplies, and more, catering to diverse research needs. 


As a locally owned and operated company, Science Equip offers personalised recommendations, technical assistance, and comprehensive after-sales service, including installation, calibration, maintenance, and repair.

2. Thermoline Scientific

Another Melbourne-based supplier, Thermoline Scientific, has an ISO 9001:2015 certification and specialises in temperature and humidity-controlled equipment, including ovens, incubators, and chambers. Their range also encompasses general lab equipment, plant growth chambers, and accelerated weathering testers. Serving as an Australian-owned and operated manufacturer, Thermoline Scientific provides high-quality and reliable equipment essential for various research applications.

3. Westlab Supplies

Headquartered in Perth, Westlab Supplies offers a vast online store and a vast catalog catering to labs across Australia. Their range includes chemicals, consumables, glassware, instrumentation, and more, making them a one-stop shop for essential lab supplies. 

4. Banksia Scientific Company

With a rich history dating back to 1920, Banksia Scientific Company has been serving the Australian scientific community for over a century. They are ISO 9001:2015 certified and offer a diverse range of scientific equipment, encompassing laboratory consumables, chemicals, and analytical instruments. Banksia Scientific boasts expertise across various scientific disciplines and provides personalised customer service, ensuring researchers receive tailored solutions for their specific needs.

5. Fisher Biotec

Located in Sydney, Fisher Biotec focuses on providing innovative solutions for molecular biology research. They offer a comprehensive range of research chemicals, antibodies, and molecular biology kits, empowering researchers in this specialised field. 

Deciding Between Used or New Lab Equipment

The decision between purchasing new or used equipment is a common dilemma faced by researchers. New equipment offers the advantage of being state-of-the-art, boasting the latest features and functionalities, and most importantly, not having any underlying issues that may come due to wear and tear from the previous owners. However, it comes with a significantly higher price tag. Used equipment, on the other hand, can offer considerable savings, particularly for older models that still perform adequately. 

However, thorough research into the condition and functionality of any used equipment is crucial before making a purchase. Carefully consider factors like age, maintenance history, availability of replacement parts, and warranty coverage. Fewer breakdowns mean more consistent results.

choosing lab equipment

Choosing Lab Equipment That Will Simplify Your Workflow

The ease of use of your lab equipment directly impacts workflow efficiency and the accuracy of your results. Prioritise equipment with a user-friendly and intuitive interface that your lab personnel will be able to use easily. Consider factors like training requirements, software compatibility, and the availability of online resources and manuals. Opting for equipment with automated features can further simplify complex procedures and minimise the risk of human error.

Identifying Essential Product Features

When evaluating different equipment options, carefully assess the features and functionalities they offer. This approach also ties back to our previous point about managing your budget. 

Determine which features are essential for your research and which ones are simply unnecessary bells and whistles that you may not need. Investing in equipment with features you won't use regularly is a waste of valuable resources. Additionally, be mindful of potential future needs and consider purchasing equipment that can be readily adapted to accommodate expansions of your research.

Beyond Purchase Price: Understanding Ongoing Costs

Remember, the upfront purchase price is just one piece of the financial puzzle when considering new equipment. Factor in the ongoing costs associated with your equipment, such as installation, calibration, maintenance, and repair. Contacting vendors or service providers to get an accurate estimate outside of just the lab equipment itself will help you make informed financial decisions.

Ensuring Safety and Compliance

Safety should be the cornerstone of any laboratory environment. Prioritise equipment that complies with relevant safety standards and regulations. Familiarise yourself with the operating procedures and safety protocols associated with your chosen equipment. Provide proper training to your lab personnel to ensure they can operate the equipment safely and effectively.

Securing Peace of Mind with Warranties and After-Sales Support

A comprehensive warranty provides peace of mind and protects your investment in case of equipment malfunction. Choose equipment backed by a robust warranty covering parts, labor, and repair services. Additionally, consider the availability of after-sales support, including technical assistance, troubleshooting resources, and spare parts. This ensures you have access to the support you need when it matters most.

Embracing Sustainability with Environmentally Conscious Choices

Sustainability is becoming increasingly important in all aspects of our lives, including the scientific community. Consider the environmental impact of your equipment choices. Look for energy-efficient models and those with minimal hazardous waste generation. Choosing efficient lab equipment will also save costs in the long run such as electricity bill, efficiency with using lab material, etc. Research the manufacturer's environmental practices and choose companies committed to sustainable production and recycling programs. 

Future-Proofing Your Lab Means Investing in Adaptability

Technology evolves rapidly, and scientific research is no exception. When making equipment purchases, consider the future. Opt for equipment with open-source software and modular designs that allow for easy upgrades and integration with future technologies. This ensures your equipment remains relevant and adaptable to your evolving research needs for years to come.

Key Takeaways: Getting The Most Accurate Results with The Most Trusted Brands

trusted brands

Building a laboratory isn’t easy, but it's an investment in the future of education and innovation. In a world increasingly reliant on practical skills, hands-on learning has become a priority. This means having properly equipped labs that can meet the demands of tomorrow.

When it comes to finding the right lab equipment supplier, Science Equip stands out as a trusted partner. We understand the importance of quality, reliability, and affordability. Our extensive portfolio of lab equipment caters to diverse research needs, ensuring you have access to the tools you need to achieve your goals.

With over 1500 satisfied customers across Australia and beyond, Science Equip is committed to providing exceptional service and support. We offer personalised recommendations, technical assistance, and comprehensive after-sales service, ensuring you have the confidence you need to succeed in your research.

By choosing Science Equip, you can build a lab that is not only functional but also adaptable to the ever-evolving future of scientific discovery. Let us partner with you on your journey to innovation and discovery.

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