Discover all the steps to follow for proper autoclave maintenance
The equation is very simple: correct use and proper maintenance of the autoclave will result in optimum performance and a long and prolific useful life.
What does autoclave maintenance mean and what does it involve?
Everything in this life requires care and maintenance. Any equipment, regardless of its size and function, requires special attention to ensure it is proper operation and extend its useful life. These will vary depending on the machine and may consist of cleaning, greasing and/or calibration.
TERRA Food-Tech® autoclaves also need maintenance and their durability and operation will depend, among other factors, on it.
Steps to follow for autoclave maintenance
Keeping your TERRA Food-Tech® autoclave as efficient as it was when you bought it is easier than you think, and it only depends on you. Thanks to proper daily, weekly, monthly, annual and biennial maintenance you will ensure that your autoclave cooks, pasteurizes and sterilizes all your preserves and ready meals perfectly and for a long time.
In case of heavy use of the autoclave, we recommend you to perform more frequently the maintenance actions detailed below.
Daily autoclave maintenance
After each use, we recommend cleaning the gasket and the inside of the lid with a clean cotton cloth with a weak solution of water and vinegar (or with a similar product, checking its composition on the label), to remove any possible traces of lime.
In addition, it is advisable to clean the external surfaces with a clean cotton cloth dampened with water or a little neutral detergent.
Subsequently, dry all surfaces and remove any possible residue before using the autoclave again.
Weekly autoclave maintenance
The regular use of your autoclave causes its sterilization chamber to get dirty. Therefore, it is important that you dedicate ten minutes of your time each week to spotless the sterilization chamber and the accessories, such as the protective rack for the heating elements and the baskets.
To do this, you must add a small amount of neutral detergent inside the chamber and start the cleaning program P1-CLEANING, which is installed in the autoclave itself. It is important to do this process without any load inside the equipment. Just leave the baskets inside.
For external surfaces, use a clean cotton cloth with a little water or neutral detergent.
Above all, do not use sharp or cutting instruments to remove possible lime scale. If you notice that a lot of limescale accumulates inside your autoclave, you should immediately check the quality of the water used.
Monthly autoclave maintenance
TERRA Food-Tech® autoclaves have two filters:
- one at the bottom rear
- and another inside the sterilization chamber.
Both serve to collect possible waste, from some type of food to label papers or plastics that can be detached. Therefore, it is necessary to clean them every month to remove any possible debris and thus avoid blocking the ducts.
To clean the filters, unscrew them to remove them and immerse them under running water. Be careful when removing them, place a container underneath to collect any liquid they may contain. Use hot water or a scouring pad to remove any residues that may have become encrusted.
If you notice that the filter is not in good condition, we recommend replacing it with a new one.
Also, inside the tank there is a built-in buoy that indicates the water level, so it is essential that it moves freely from top to bottom. If not, you will have to clean the buoy and also its axis.
Annual autoclave maintenance
TERRA Food-Tech® autoclaves have a temperature probe, both to be inserted inside the chamber and inside the product, which is used to measure the heat applied inside the autoclave and the preserve during the pasteurization and sterilization.
With use, this probe becomes misaligned, so it will be essential to calibrate it. To do this, you must resort to the machine settings through which you can, in a computerized way, readjust the values of the probes.
Biennial autoclave maintenance
And, every two years, you should change the silicone gasket on the cover.
Do you want to keep this maintenance guide handy?
We have prepared a completely free downloadable PDF with all the above information summarized.
Technical service and original spare parts
Likewise, we remind you that for optimal operation of your autoclave it is essential to always use original spare parts and have your equipment periodically checked by a specialist technician.
In the event of a possible breakdown, if you have doubts about the steps to follow or for more information on the maintenance of TERRA Food-Tech® autoclaves, remember that you can contact our technical service .
Before carrying out any maintenance work, remember to check that your autoclave is stopped, it means that the main switch need to be in position 0 (autoclave off).
In addition, we remind you of some general tips that you should take into account:
- Do not wash the autoclave with direct water jets. Possible water infiltrations can affect its components and the operation of the equipment.
- Never use metal cloths or brushes, or other abrasive materials or products to clean the autoclave and its components.
- Never use chemicals or disinfectant substances to clean the camera, as they could cause irreparable damage.
- Do not use acidic cleaning agents, chlorous solvents or saline solutions for cleaning.
- Always remove any possible residue of lime or other substances that may remain in the chamber, cover or gasket, to avoid damaging the hydraulic circuit.
TERRA Food-Tech® autoclaves for the production of preserves and ready meals
Remember that our autoclaves are one of the few on the market created specifically for the production of preserves and ready meals. From the hand of RAYPA , they are autoclaves that have the benefits of the industrial ones, but designed for small-scale packaged food production.
For more information on the maintenance of your autoclave or on the characteristics of our equipment, do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to help you.