Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I send my instruments to Custom Calibration rather than directly back to the OEM or to another calibration lab to be calibrated and/or repaired?

There are several good reasons for doing this:
•   It is usually less expensive than sending them directly back to the OEM. In fact, our test equipment repair services can save forty percent or more compared to OEM flat rates.
•   Calibration is usually done in less time than that required by the OEM because we are able to schedule it at your convenience according to your unique needs.
•   Five convenient locations on the East and West Coast, in Canada and Asia can save on shipping costs, especially if the location of the OEM requires international shipping.
•   Unlike OEM’s or most other calibration labs, we have the capability to do onsite calibration right at the location where the equipment is used, often reducing expensive downtime.
•   We have in-house capability to perform preventive maintenance and repairs rather than subcontracting these services to others, saving you time and money.
In other words, we can perform calibrations faster, at lower cost and more conveniently than the OEM or other calibration companies.

Will sending my instruments to Custom Calibration rather than directly back to the OEM invalidate my warranty?

Custom-Cal checks for warranty status and will alert you if the warranty is still in effect. We do this in case you forgot the instrument was under warranty so you won’t need to spend money when the OEM should bear the cost. We can usually provide drop shipment to the manufacturer from our facility if this happens. Additionally, Custom-Cal does have agreements with specific manufacturers and is authorized to perform the OEM warranty work and calibration per the manufacturer’s recommended practice using OEM parts and software.

Are test instrument calibrations performed by Custom Calibration directly traceable to NIST?

Yes. We maintain an extensive inventory of unique reference standards that allow our engineers and technicians, all of whom have extensive OEM experience, to quickly and efficiently provide test equipment calibration services with high-level, direct traceability to NIST. We are also an ISO registered company, having received our ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation through ACLASS to meet the calibration requirements of our customers.

Can Custom Calibration perform preventive maintenance as well as calibration services?

Yes. We offer preventive maintenance and repair services, which we perform ourselves rather than subcontracting them to others, during the calibration process in order to extend Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF). We also offer a one-year warranty on calibrations.

Why is it important that Custom Calibration performs preventive maintenance and repair services internally rather than subcontracting it to other companies?

Most calibration companies claim to be a one stop shop. Because they specialize in calibration and lack the expertise to perform component level repairs in-house, however, many calibration labs subcontract almost all of their preventive maintenance and repair work. They then mark up the cost to cover their shipping and administrative expenses and in most cases make a profit. This, of course, increases your cost.

Can you offer any specific examples of how Custom Calibration was able to reduce costs for its current customers?

Yes. One of our major customers, for whom we provide calibration and repair services to a number of different engineering test groups, requested an estimate for a certain instrument from both the OEM and from Custom Calibration. Their estimate was $7,534.00, while ours was $3,480.00, a 54% cost savings. The same customer compared the total actual calibration cost for all the instruments used by one engineering test group calibrated by individual OEM’s versus the estimated cost of the same instruments calibrated by Custom Calibration. The difference was $56,449.01 versus $38,054.00, a total savings of $18,395.01, or 32.6% altogether.

How is Custom Calibration able to offer such substantial savings compared with similar services offered by OEM’s?

Primarily by offering one-stop shopping for all your instrument calibration and repair needs. You no longer need to ship different instruments to different OEM’s, incurring a flat fee from each OEM. We are thus able to not only offer a volume discount, but because all our work is done in-house, there are no mark-ups and we are able to pass the savings along to you.

Can Custom Calibration provide calibration and repair services for instruments that the OEM no longer supports?

Yes. Custom Calibration can extend the useful life of older equipment that would normally be obsolete after five years by offering repair services that the OEM would not make available, allowing our customers to postpone the purchase of expensive new instruments until a later date.

Does Custom Calibration provide free estimates and are your estimates guaranteed not to be exceeded?

In many cases, we are able to provide estimates, but sometimes we do need to charge a nominal fee when the outcome of a repair is vague or there is a sizable time investment necessary to determine the root cause(s). Our extensive experience with many types and models of test equipment allows us to quote a standard repair cost when sufficient information regarding the problem with the unit is provided. A Not-To-Exceed quote is issued when historical data on a particular instrument indicates that the problem could be due to any of a number of different causes, some of which are more difficult to repair than others. In this case, the most expensive repair is estimated but the actual cost of the repair is billed.