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How to choose a PAT Tester

Considering the number of brands and models you can select from these days, picking a portable appliance tester that will fit your test and tag needs can be a difficult task.

Whether you’re buying your first appliance tester or you need to upgrade your previous tester, we’ve broken down the important factors you need to consider:

  • Know your budget
  • The number of tests you will be conducting 
  • How you plan on recording results

Know your budget

With prices ranging from $700-$2000, it’s important to know which tester has the right features in your price point. 

Under $1000 - you'll generally be getting a tester with mains power and one that requires you to log the data by hand. Essentially, this is perfect for people who don't do a lot of testing.

Over $1000 - the testers in the price bracket will mostly be battery powered. This allows for greater portability around the workplace and will save you time needing to find power sockets. You'll also be looking at a tester that offers RCD testing and stores data.

High-end testers - this is considered the complete solution and intended for people who test in high volumes or that operate a test and tag business. The tester will often come with a scanner or printer, which enables you to re-test appliances and capture data quickly and effortlessly. Likewise, you'll have more control over the data by having the ability to generate reports and automate re-testing dates. 

The number of tests you'll be conducting

This question is a major factor in determining your ideal PAT tester. If you’re planning on testing appliances infrequently, there’s really no reason for you to buy an expensive portable appliance tester that has features you won't utilise.

On the other hand, if you’re running a test and tag business, it’s highly advised you invest more into your tester. This is because those extra features will make a significant difference to your overall workload and how you operate.

How you plan on recording results

Although writing your results by hand is acceptable, it’ll eventually become extremely difficult when you have 100’s of appliances to keep track of. By using either a scanner, printer or an appliance tester that stores your results, it’ll inevitably save you time in the long-run.  

Making the choice

By answering the above questions, you should now have a better idea as to which PAT tester you’re going to need to fit your requirements.

If you have any further questions or require extra advice, please call us on 1300 848 302

You can also visit our Portable Appliance Testers website which has interactive comparision charts to help make your choice easy.


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