XRF Repair vs Replace: factors to consider

Your old XRF analyzer is giving you problems again.  It wasn’t even six months ago when you had to handle the unbudgeted expense associated with replacing a detector tube – not to mention the production headaches.  Now what’s wrong? Hopefully it’s minor and not a power supply or x-ray tube.  Once it’s fixed though, will it require a repair in another six months – or sooner?

Every organization has to be careful of where their budget goes.  It’s a major reason that organizations keep putting money into repairing older, out of date, XRF analyzers (8+ years) instead of replacing them with a newer model…the short term repair solution will be less than the long-term replacement solution.  However, regular repair bills will add up…not to mention the logistical problems that can occur when this critical quality control instrument goes down.  Repair vs Replace is a classic decision for many users of older XRF analyzers…

Three reasons that any organization utilizing a system over eight years old should consider new systems are:

Long-term savings (and your stress)
Component Availability, Repair Frequency (headaches
This is truly the number one reason to consider investing in a new XRF analyzer.  The older an x-ray fluorescence analyzer gets, the more difficult it may become to obtain replacement components.  Additionally, those repair calls tend to occur more frequently…not even considering the actual repair expense, the production and client related problems that not having an operational XRF can cause an organization can be massive.

Software and Operating System Efficiency
Networking, Windows 7, Reporting

Technology evolves.  For some organizations, an old XRF analyzer may still be fine for running parts but many realize the benefits provided by better data management capabilities available on newer XRF analyzers.  From the ability to network results, to the implementation of Windows 7 operating systems on analyzers, and much greater reporting capabilities…the newest XRF analyzers provide a more efficient approach to data management – streamlining operation and increasing production efficiency.

Introduction of New Features
Auto-focus, Crash Protection, Fundamental Parameters, Motorized XY

Over the years, manufacturers of x-ray fluorescence analyzers have introduced new features to improve the overall ease of use that the technology offers end-users.  A few major additions include motorized heads with auto-focus to eliminate user alignment errors, the addition of standard-less (FP) calibrations so that users can quickly expand their application reach, and motorized/programmable XY tables so that multi-sample runs can increase productivity.

The financial benefits of these improvements have to be looked at on a case by case basis but many organizations realize that the long-term benefits of replacement over repair (constant repair, sometimes) are worth consideration.

Eastern Applied Research offers both XRF sales and service, so we can offer multiple options and recommendations for the best long-term solution.  Contact an Eastern Applied associate to discuss your current XRF analyzer and weigh the options – before your next repair is required.

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