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EL-USB Series Data Loggers and Calibration


Recently, there’s been some confusion when it comes to calibration and EL series temperature data loggers. The fact that we offer a NIST traceable calibration certificate (sold separately) has led some to believe that a certificate must be purchased in order for the logger to be calibrated. On the contrary, EL series data loggers are calibrated prior to shipment and values are warranted to be within the specifications outlined in their respective datasheets. A certificate is not provided with the unit, however.

Do I Need a NIST Traceable Calibration Certificate?

If you haven’t been told that your measurements need to be NIST traceable, you probably don’t need a certificate. The certificate simply establishes traceability to NIST standards. If you’re unsure, consult with the company/organization that you’re making measurements for.

How Many Data Points?

Assuming that NIST traceability is required, multiple data points can be chosen . Calibration will be performed at each of the chosen data point. The number of temperature points chosen depends on the application. For example, if you’re acquiring temperature values over a narrow range; say 75 to 80°F, you might choose a single calibration point of 77°F (a standard calibration point). On the other hand, if you’re acquiring data over a wide range; say 32°F to 100°F, you might choose to calibrate the unit at several points in between.

A Note Regarding Thermocouple-based instruments

Calibration certificates ordered for instruments that use thermocouples (TCs) apply only to the instrument itself, and exclude the supplied TC. The TC provided with all TC-based EL Series instruments is not a NIST-traceable sensor, so it doesn’t make sense to include it with the certification. Many reputable suppliers of TCs supply them with a NIST-traceable option. Using such a sensor with an instrument purchased with the certification option forms a complete, certified solution.

Click to view a sample EL Series Calibration Certificate


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  1. Avatar
    Angela Lewis
    Posted August 28, 2013 at 6:59 pm Permalink

    Does this product need to be re-calibrated after a certain period of time? If so, how long after purchase and how much does it cost? Thank you.

    • Posted September 4, 2013 at 1:43 pm Permalink

      A typical calibration cycle is one year. So long as the EL-USB series logger is operating within the specifications outlined in the data sheet however, there is no technical reason to re-calibrate. Consult with the individual/organization for whom you’re acquiring data, as they may have more stringent standards.

      • Avatar
        Ben Yu
        Posted September 18, 2013 at 2:13 pm Permalink

        Our company SOP does need this to be re-calibrate every year. Can we just send it back for re-calibration? How much does it cost? Thank you.

  2. Avatar
    Linda O'Connor
    Posted November 7, 2013 at 11:59 am Permalink

    We have a data logger unit. It seems to be off. How can we get it recalibrated? Can we just send it back? How much would it cost?

  3. Avatar
    John Kim
    Posted January 24, 2014 at 2:31 pm Permalink

    Yes, I’m also curious as to how to get it recalibrated. What is the exact procedure?

  4. Posted April 23, 2014 at 12:02 pm Permalink

    I noticed no one answered on if the El-USB-1 can be sent back for calibration. Does it or does it not need to be sent out for calibration or is it self calibrating?

    • Posted April 28, 2014 at 11:36 am Permalink

      EL-USB series instruments cannot be returned for calibration. Please request calibration (and specify calibration points) during the ordering process.

  5. Avatar
    Vernon Bartlett
    Posted June 12, 2014 at 1:21 pm Permalink

    Our applications have temperature controlled by a calibrated PID temperature controller unit.

    It would be very helpful to be able to set the data logger to the temperature indicated by the PID controller. Otherwise I have to fix an offset into the control chart.

    Is there a way for the user to actually set the data logger to the same set point as indicated by the PID?

    Additionally, the data loggers can sometimes vary up to 3 degrees from one another when the are all in the same same solution at the same time. They also give different readings using the same singular probe at the same position.

    Getting everything to the same relative response reduces complexity and increases versatility.

    I am currently forced to fix a logger/probe combination for every station to control recording variances. The logger and the PID controller both share the same probe through a dual feed.

    • Posted June 18, 2014 at 3:34 pm Permalink

      No, the EL-USB-1 cannot be set the data logger to the same set point as indicated by the PID.

      Note that the overall accuracy of each EL-USB-1 is ±1°C (±2°F).

  6. Avatar
    Posted July 23, 2014 at 10:25 am Permalink

    IF the EL – USB series unit can not be sent back for calibration yet it is standard for one year – how do you go about getting it calibrated ? is there a third party company somewhere that could do it ? Current audit standards require a yearly calibration for these.

    • Posted July 25, 2014 at 11:45 am Permalink

      If found to be out of cal during your yearly audit, the only recourse is to replace the instrument. Remember that in most cases we have a selling price of less than $100 for these instruments. The cost to re-calibrate, plus the cost to ship them back and forth most likely exceeds its replacement cost.

  7. Avatar
    Posted September 19, 2014 at 7:57 am Permalink

    Do you do calibration at different relative humidity points? I need 25C/20%RH and 25C/40%RH.

    • Posted September 22, 2014 at 3:57 pm Permalink

      We can provide those values, but they are treated as custom points and charged accordingly:
      $125 for each point for a total of $250 for both.

  8. Posted September 16, 2016 at 4:01 pm Permalink

    We purchased several EL-USB-1 & 2 -LCD data loggers last August. We used them on several projects and now one of our clients wants a NIST traceable calibration certificates for these units. Can we get a certificate retroactively?

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