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Buying Guide

Overview

The following guide may assist in your choice of appliance tester, but the best way to find out which is the most appropriate unit is by calling us.


Core features

Insulation and Continuity meter or Appliance Tester?
A Portable Appliance Tester will be more appropriate if:

  • You have any appliances with electronic 'on' switches switches (those that must be energised to be in the 'on' position) eg Slow start drill, electronic microwaves etc
  • You would like the test device to determine an unambiguous PASS/FAIL for you
  • You would like some features to help ensure tests are carried out correctly
  • You are not comfortable with using probes manually
  • You are concerned about testing incorrectly and damaging equipment

Do I need current leakage testing?
You require a current leakage testing if:

  • You have any appliances with electronic 'on' switches switches (those that must be energised to be in the 'on' position) eg Slow start drill, electronic microwaves etc?

Do I need an appliance 'off' warning?
We recommend an appliance 'off' warning wherever possible - particularly if the individual testing is not a test and tag specialist.

Do I need values in addition to a PASS/FAIL result?
You may prefer a PASS/FAIL result if

  • The organisation you work for has specifically requested that values of each test are recorded and documented
  • In the event of a FAIL result, you will be required to fault find and repair
  • If the appliance fails a test, you'd like to know by how much it failed

Do I need battery operation?
You will benefit from battery operation if:

  • You will be required to climb in hard to get places where trailing leads could be dangerous
  • The majority of tests required will be on equipment which does not require a current leakage test
  • The instrument has multifunction features and you will be using it for fault finding and other electrical work

Do I need high current earth bond testing?
High current earth bond testing may be preferential if:

  • You will be using the appliance tester for end-of-line manufacturing testing
  • The organisation has specifically requested that high current earth bond testing be performed
  • Note that whilst more thorough, high current earth bond testing is not a requirement under AS3760. Due to portability demands of users, high current earth bond testing is generally no longer a standard feature of appliances testers. High current earth bond capable testers tend to be heavier, less portable and more cumbersome.

Do I need an RCD / Safety Switch trip time testing feature?
Consider purchasing an RCD trip time tester (or a unit with an integrated feature) if :

  • You regularly use RCD's in the work place and you spend over $400.00 per annum on getting them trip time tested
  • You will be testing professionally and your clients will have RCD's
  • You think you may be required to test RCD's in the future and would like the facility as an integrated feature.

Do I need an isolation transformer?
You will require an isolation transformer (either integrated or separate if)

  • You will be testing portable RCD's in an environment which used a fixed switchboard RCD.

Do I need a data logging facility in the tester?
Data logging facilities maybe cost beneficial if:

  • You have hundreds of appliances in the workplace requiring testing
  • You are testing professionally
  • Your company has requested that values are recorded in addition to PASS/FAIL results
  • You have over $2000.00 to spend on an appliance tester.

Do I need a tag printer?
A tag printer maybe cost and time beneficial if:

  • You have hundreds of appliances in the workplace requiring regularly testing
  • You are testing professionally
  • You have over $2000.00 to spend on an appliance testing system

How much do I need to spend on a tester?

On an appliance tester capable of testing in accordance with the AS/NZS3760:2010.

Appliance tester will cost from $695.00 + GST to $3195.00 + GST
Annual calibration will cost from $95.00 + GST to $275.00 + GST


On an appliance tester capable of testing in accordance with the AS/NZS3760:2010 and with integrated RCD testing.

Appliance tester will cost from $995.00 + GST to $3195.00 + GST
Annual calibration will cost from $160.00 + GST to $275.00 + GST



On an appliance tester capable of testing in accordance with the AS/NZS3760:2010 and recording results to memory for download to a PC.

Appliance tester will cost from $995.00 + GST to $3195.00 + GST
Annual calibration will cost from $160.00 + GST to $275.00 + GST


On an appliance testing package of testing in accordance with the AS/NZS3760:2010, recording results to memory and automatically creating a database - referring new test results to previous test information.

Appliance tester will cost from around $1500.00 + GST to $3195.00 + GST
PC Software required may be included or may cost up to $1595.00 + GST
Annual calibration will cost from $160.00 + GST to $275.00 + GST

On an appliance testing package capable of testing in accordance with the AS/NZS3760:2010, recording results to memory, creating a database, and automatically printing a test tag.

Systems will cost from $2100.00 + GST to $7500.00 + GST
Printer for appliance tester will cost from $1595.00 + GST to $2195.00 + GST
PC Software required will cost from $995.00 + GST to $1595.00 + GST
Annual calibration will cost from $160.00 + GST to $275.00 + GST

Added benefits

Do I need an audible FAIL indicator?
Audible FAIL indicator will sound an alarm in the event of an appliance FAIL. As 99% of the appliances you check will probably PASS, it's very helpful to have an additional alarm when an appliance FAILS.

Do I need a double insulation connection check?
Only the Trio Smartcal SafeTcheck has this feature. When testing a double insulated appliance the Trio Smartcal SafeTcheck ensures that the probe that will measure any breakdown in insulation (which might cause a FAIL) has been connected to the appliance either directly or using the Insulation Cloak. It helps ensure that tests are carried out correctly and accurately.

Do I need to purchase an insulation cloak?
An insulation cloak is a piece of metal mesh cloth which can be wrapped around a double insulated appliance during an insulation test. The cloak covers the appliance with a conductive surface. By covering the appliance with the cloak, if any breakdown in resistance is present on the surface of the appliance, the appliance tester will measure the breakdown more effectively. Aluminum foil can also be used for this purpose but is clumsy, time consuming and messy. The use of an insulation cloak is not required under AS/NZS3760:2010.

Does the tester I'm purchasing need a visual and/or audible warning before performing a powered run test
Yes, during a powered test the appliance will operate. For safety reasons, a pre-test warning is essential. This maybe in the form of a prompt screen, a warning noise, or both.


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