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How to Stop Pipetting Errors in Your Experiments?

Experiments require accurate pipetting for accurate results. While experimenting, you target your results to be replicated elsewhere, have accurate stock solutions and with minimal, if not none, assay errors. All these will help you have results that can be meaningfully compared.

For you to have an experiment whose results will be reliable because of its accuracy, look no further. The micropipettes are just designed for that purpose and the good news is pipette tips price is affordable.

In as much these instruments of precision are at your disposal to ensure accurate results, you determine the accuracies yourself. This means you need to understand how they work, maintain them, and always apply the best techniques.

This is how:

Understand How They Operate
  • For Air Displacement Pipette
This one works like a syringe. If you use the air displacement pipette, be careful on how you push the air between the piston and the solutions.

However, their accuracy is compromised by external factors such as pressure and temperature. Solvents that are more volatile are likely to evaporate leading to a lower volume of the solvent thereby giving inaccurate results. Corrosive or bio-hazardous solutions may not work well with these types of pipettes as they can contaminate the barrel.

  • Positive Displacement Pipettes
They work like the air displacements pipettes, only that these ones do not have the air cushion. This means that they are ideal for pipetting corrosive and hazardous solutions like reagents. Besides, the lack of air cushion assures accurate results.

Maintaining Your Pipettes
  • Service Your Pipettes
The pipettes should be serviced every 6-12 months. Although, depending on the need for accuracy, you may service them more frequently than that.

What to service:
  • Grease the parts that move
  • Recalibrate
  • Replace seals that are worn out
  • Clean pipettes before use
This can be done by using 70% ethanol to wipe them.

  • Use a Pipette Holder to Vertically Store the Pipettes
Storing the pipettes vertically helps drain any solution remnants instead of letting them into the barrel and cause corrosion. This also applies when you store your pipes sideways with liquid in the tip.

  • Use Tips that are Fitting
If the tip is not well fitting, it allows air to escape while using the pipette to draw and dispense the liquid. This usually affects the accuracy of the results.

Embrace Good Pipetting Methods:

  • Know how to properly pipette
  • Use slow but smooth pipetting moves
  • When drawing in the liquid, always hold the pipette vertically
  • When drawing the solution, only immerse the tip slightly to avoid wetting the tip and transferring the extra liquid into the main solution, as this will affect the desired volume
  • Accuracy Test
Dispense 100 µL into the final solution balance. This droplet should translate to a mass of 0.1g. Repeat the same to 10 times and obtain the variation, which should not be more than +/- 0.5%. if more, then practice more too!

Perfecting your accuracy
  • Pre-wet the pipette tip to increase the results accuracy.
  • Reverse pipette especially when dealing with viscous and volatile liquids
  • Take into account the ambient temperature
  • Dispense the desired volume into the container
In the end, ensure you do the experiment using high quality pipettes and you will find pipette tips price online very affordable.

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