How to and why calibrate a thermometer
Why calibrate ?It is important to repeat this calibration process on a regular basis because it is a common occurrence with most thermometers to lose some of their accuracy over time.
Calibrating your thermometer is quick and easy. Many analog and digital thermometers allow you to offset the temperature to adjust for the calibrated value.There are several ways to calibrate it .
1. Fill a glass with ice cubes, then top off with cold water.
2. Stir the water and let sit for 3 minutes.
3. Stir again, then insert your thermometer into the glass, making sure not to touch the sides.
4. The temperature should read 32°F (0°C). Record the difference and offset your thermometer as appropriate.
2: BOILING WATER
1. Boil a pot of distilled water.
2. Once the water has reached a rolling boil, insert your thermometer, making sure not to touch the sides or bottom of the pot.
The temperature should read 212°F (100°C). Record the difference and offset your thermometer as appropriate.
The boiling point of water will vary with altitude. find the right temperature for your elevation
Step 1 - Fill a Glass With Ice and Water
One popular method that is used to calibrate a digital meat thermometer is to fill a glass with some ice at the bottom, and then top it up with some hot or boiling water. Leave it for a few moments to allow some time for the water to chill, but do not allow too much time for the ice to start to melt.
Step 2 - Insert the Thermometer in the Water
At this point, insert the thermometer in the glass, allowing the tip to touch the ice. This is an easy way to calibrate it, as it should register in the range of about 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
If this temperature is not recorded, then you'll know that the thermometer is not accurate. Being a digital thermometer, you do not have the ability to adjust accordingly by fixing the adjustment wrench. So, in such a case you might have to replace it.
Step 3 - Sterilize the Thermometer
If your thermometer recorded the desired temperature of 32 degrees Fahrenheit, you can then sterilize it by washing it with some warm water before using it in the food.
Step 4 - Test the Food’s Temperature
Afterward, you can use the thermometer to check the cooking meat’s temperature by making sure to insert its tip in the thickest part of the rib, fillet, or whatever type of meat you are cooking. It should provide an accurate result after you have calibrated it by using this simple method.
Step 5 - Repeat
It is important to repeat this calibration process on a regular basis because it is a common occurrence with most thermometers to lose some of their accuracy over time. In fact, in the case of digital thermometers, it is recommended to carry out the calibration process more frequently because they cannot be adjusted easily thermometers that have a mini wrench and the possibility to make manual adjustments easily.
This simple method only takes a few minutes time and will help you to put your mind at rest that your thermometer is recording the accurate temperature when inserted in the meat you cook.
The basic idea is that you create an environment where you know, for a fact, what the temperature is. Then, you use the thermometer to measure that environment and see if it reads the right temp. Since we know that water freezes at 32 F and below, and we know that water boils at 212 F, either one of those makes a great “environment” for us to test with our thermometers.
One note: for most calibration procedures, I prefer to use an ice bath at 32 F as opposed to boiling water and testing for 212 F. This is because the boiling point of water changes at different elevations, and I don’t want to have to account for that temperature change. For some digital thermometers, however, (like the thermapen) you need to use both environments.
The above method based on digital meat thermometer.
How To calibrate a dial thermometer: If the thermometer is not reading correctly, you can use a small wrench to twist the nut underneath the thermometer face. Be gentle! Slight adjustment should be all that’s needed. For quickest results, you can adjust the nut with the probe still in the ice water.
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