Autoclaving Big Beakers and Flasks? Use the Vacuum Function!

If you’re regularly autoclaving large Erlenmeyer flasks, graduated cylinders, or beakers—and it’s not practical to run the entire load lying horizontally—a vacuum function is vital to your consistent success. Why Autoclaving Containers is a Hard Autoclaving any container is inherently challenging—even when that container is open.  Why?  Dense cold air tends to pool at the … Continue reading “Autoclaving Big Beakers and Flasks? Use the Vacuum Function!”

This No-Cost Lab Autoclave Procedure Tweak Significantly Improves Sterilization

We’ve spoken at length about the follies of foil, and regularly help customers kit out autoclaves precisely suited to their specific tasks.  But there is one thing that any lab can do at no cost— TODAY!—that will massively boost the effectiveness of their steam sterilizer: Autoclave large beakers, flasks, and cylinders on their sides—especially Erlenmeyer … Continue reading “This No-Cost Lab Autoclave Procedure Tweak Significantly Improves Sterilization”

Lab Autoclave Procedure Best Practices: The Futility of Foil

There are many justifications for crimping foil loosely over the mouths of containers before autoclaving. The most common—and seemingly most reasonable—is that this common autoclave procedure keeps viable spores from drifting onto the sterilized items. That seems to make sense: If I want to keep dust off the the sofa stored in my garage, I … Continue reading “Lab Autoclave Procedure Best Practices: The Futility of Foil”

Autoclave Sterilization Tips: Abandon All Foil, Ye Who Pass This Way!

We need to talk about your autoclave sterilization rituals and aluminum foil. Specifically: Do not use aluminum foil when sterilizing empty beakers and flasks! Loosely crimping foil over the mouths of empty flasks prior to autoclaving them is a widespread practice in many research labs.  Justifications for this practice vary.  Some claim it keeps water … Continue reading “Autoclave Sterilization Tips: Abandon All Foil, Ye Who Pass This Way!”