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What Should I Consider When Buying a Digital Scale?

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  • Written By: J. S. Petersen
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 17 September 2016
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Digital scales can be used for a variety of purposes, from cooking to monitoring your weight. There are several important things to consider when purchasing a digital scale, and in order to get the best use out of your scale, you'll want to think about each one carefully. Some people might make do with a standard scale, but if you're going digital, here's what to look for.

First of all, you need to be able to read your digital scale for it to do you any good. Make sure that the digital scale's readout is clear, and in a location that is easy to see. If it's a bathroom digital scale, make sure that when you stand on it you can see the numbers clearly without having to move around or stand in an awkward position. If it's a digital scale for your kitchen, make sure that you will be able to read it if you put a large bowl or platter on top.

When you buy a digital scale for the kitchen, make sure that its range of measurements fits your needs. If you'll be doing large scale baking and measuring pounds of flour and sugar, make sure that your digital scale can handle that much weight. If your digital scale will be used for smaller recipes, you won't need as much range, but you will want a scale which is accurate to a smaller unit of measurement.

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If your digital scale is used to measure small amounts in the kitchen, you will want to make sure that it is accurate to a small unit of measurement, and that it is precise. Make sure that the digital scale can tell you accurately if something is 1 gram or 1.5 grams. For smaller recipes, the difference between 1 gram and 1.5 grams of cinnamon could make a big difference in the final product. A high level of precision in your digital scale means that if you measure the weight of 1/4 cup of salt, and then measure the weight of a second 1/4 cup of salt, both measurements will be the same. You do not want to buy a scale that is imprecise, because it will prevent you from accurately reproducing your recipes.

A useful feature of a kitchen digital scale is the ability to tare or zero the reading. This feature allows you to measure several ingredients in the same container. When you tare a scale, it considers what is already there to weigh nothing, and only weighs what is added. If you have 5 grams of salt on the scale and tare it, the reading will be 0. You can then add 3.5 grams of pepper easily, instead of having to remember that though the recipe says 3.5 grams, you actually need to get a reading of 8.5 grams on the scale.

Finally, you will want a digital scale which uses the units you are most familiar with, or even better, one that allows you to use a number of different units. If your recipe calls for grams, and your scale measures only in ounces, you'll have a lot of math to do. Keep all these things in mind, and you're sure to find the digital scale that is right for you. Price and appearance are factors of course, but getting all the features you need is worth the extra money.

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