The two most common manufacturers of autoclaves in the podiatry profession are Midmark/Ritter and Pelton Crane. There are several others like Tuttnauer, AMSCO, Castle and American Sterilizer. However, they represent a relative few in the used podiatry autoclave market. The Midmark/Ritter M7, M9 and M11 units are all fully automated and often referred to as "one-touch" autoclaves. The Pelton Crane Validator 10 and Validator Plus series are very analogous as they are also "one-touch" units. But, the most  common of all of them is the Pelton Crane OCM and OCR units. One dealer referred to them as the Harley Davidson of autoclaves. They have been around for decades and a great number continue to provide dependable service. Parts are inexpensive and readily available from alternative sources and qualified repair services are readily available throughout the US.

     When choosing an autoclave, the first thing to consider is the size that will be needed to meet the practice needs. If the intention is to autoclave only hand instruments, the Pelton Crane OCM or Midmark/Ritter M7 should be more than adequate. They will cycle faster than the larger units and use less electricity. If the practice includes office surgery that employs surgical power sets, a larger unit will be needed. The Pelton Crane Validator 10, Validator Plus, OCR, OCR+ and Midmark/Ritter M9 or M11 units will be required. 

Generally, good used Midmark/Ritter autoclaves will cost from $200 to $1000 more than comparable Pelton Crane units although both of the manufacturers' products can be expected to provide dependable service for many years if properly cared for. The costs of repairing the Midmark/Ritter autoclaves can be significantly more expensive than the corresponding Pelton Cranes because of the ready availability of Pelton Crane parts from sources other than the manufacturer. In addition, autoclaves that incorporate electronic control boards are always more expensive to repair than those with more simplified circuitry. Recently, I had significant difficulty locating an electronic control board for an M9. My tech told me that Midmark/Ritter is no longer providing support for their older units. This can be a real problem if you purchase a used autoclave without a warranty.

     In fact, I can't stress enough that the key to saving money with used podiatry equipment lies in the nature of the warranty in terms of time and the capacity to provide support throughout the warranty period and after. Yes, you can purchase equipment from fellow doctors for what appears to be a very good price only to have it break down a month or two later. The costs of repairs in the field are not small and what was once thought to be a good deal can turn into a nightmare in an instant. I can still recall when I was working in anesthesia a Senior Attending told me that in our field, "Careers are built over a period of decades and destroyed in seconds". Working with used podiatry equipment day-to-day, I marvel at how difficult it would be to support the equipment we sell without our knowledge base and superior technical support personnel.

     Global Intermed warrants all of our equipment for 1 year, 100% parts & labor or replacement and supports it after that. We also provide support for all of our doctors' equipment when and where we can regardless whether they purchased it from GI or someone else. Feel free to call to let us know how we can help. Ask for Mark or Sue.

Global Intermed
19876 Henry Rd.
Fairview Park, OH 44126
Tel: 440.333.0007
Fax: 440.333.4902        


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