17

The storage space in my kitchen is rather limited. For that reason, I store my digital scale under a (rather lightweight) salad spinner.

  • Is there any risk to mess up the calibration of the scale and getting out wrong measurements?
  • Would it matter if the object stored on top of the scale was heavier (a pot for example)?
1
  • I've had my share of flaky digital scales. Just based on the unknowns, there is risk. How big that risk is would require analysis that costs way more than a digital scale. Of course GdDs answer is sensationally reasonable. Mar 8, 2022 at 20:25

1 Answer 1

19

With a digital scale it shouldn't matter at all, the sensor is an electronic strain gauge, increasing weight changes the voltage the sensor returns, the scale is calibrated to the change in voltage, translating that to the weight. There are no major mechanical parts to wear out. With this type of sensor having a light weight on it shouldn't make any difference to it long term. I have a measuring cup sitting on mine when it's in the drawer, and I've done that for years without an issue. A larger object should still be okay as long as it doesn't exceed the capacity of the scale, at some point it will damage the sensor. Although, if you are concerned you can just stand it up on its side instead of putting something on top.

Mechanical scales are a different story as most of them use springs, keeping a load on a spring long-term can lead to it deforming and/or weakening prematurely, leading to errors in precision.

6
  • Except ... most cheap digital kitchen scales are spring scales, aren't they?
    – FuzzyChef
    Mar 8, 2022 at 3:00
  • 3
    If a scale's plate moves noticeably it's a spring scale, but I've never seen a digital scale with a spring in it.
    – GdD
    Mar 8, 2022 at 8:39
  • @FuzzyChef 0 to a few kg force sensors can be found on ebay for a few $, 10's of cents if you get them from ali express. The rest of the wiring (minus the lcd) will be even cheaper.
    – Sam Dean
    Mar 8, 2022 at 10:44
  • 2
    The digital scales have 'springs' in them as well, the physical travel is just so small that it is not visible. Mechanical scales with 'real' springs should remain unaffected by a constant load as well, but that depends on the quality of the material. I have seen mechanical scales that rely on plastic springs, and those actually have lots of creep, i.e. the material slowly morphs out of the way of a constant force, which will invalidate the reading, even after zeroing. Digital scales may have the same problem if the actual measuring device is fitted in plastic brackets
    – loonquawl
    Mar 8, 2022 at 11:46
  • Also, we're talking about a salad spinner, presumably lightweight plastic? I can't imagine any kitchen scale, digital or mechanical, that would be permanently damaged by such a lightweight object. Even a pot is probably fine, unless it's one of those heavy cast-iron pots maybe. Mar 8, 2022 at 17:45

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.