The Maintenance Manual for Laboratory Equipment was developed to support staff working in health laboratories. Its purpose is to give a better understanding of the technical requirements regarding installation, use and maintenance of various types of equipment which play an important role in carrying out diagnostic tests and techniques.
This manual has been developed to support personnel employed in health laboratories. Its purpose is to give a better
understanding of the technical requirements regarding installation, use and maintenance of various types of equipment which
play an important role in performing diagnostic testing. The manual also aims to provide support to personnel responsible
for technical management, implementation of quality management and maintenance.
Due to the diversity of origins, brands and models, this manual off ers general recommendations. Equipment-specifi c details
are explained in depth in the maintenance and installation user manuals from manufacturers. These should be requested
and ordered through the procurement processes of the individual agencies and professionals responsible for the acquisition
of technology, or directly from the manufacturer.
This manual was originally developed by the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) to support improved quality
programmes which PAHO promotes in regional laboratories. The English version was produced by WHO to further expand
support for quality programmes in other regions. The revised edition now includes 20 equipment groups selected to cover
those most commonly used in low to medium technical complexity laboratories across the world. Given the diff erences in
technical complexity, brands and existing models, each chapter has been developed with basic equipment in mind, including
new technology where relevant. The following information is included in each chapter:
• Groups of equipment, organized by their generic names. Alternative names have also been included.
• Photographs or diagrams, or a combination of both to identify the type of equipment under consideration.
• A brief explanation on the main uses or applications of the equipment in the laboratory.
• A basic description of the principles by which the equipment operates with explanations of principles or physical and/or
chemical laws which the interested reader can – or should study in depth.
• Installation requirements with emphasis on the electrical aspects and the requirements for safe installation and operation,
including worldwide electrical standards.
• Basic routine maintenance, classifi ed according to the required frequency (daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, annually
or sporadically). The procedures are numbered and presented in the actual sequence in which these should take place
(model-specifi c procedures can be found in the manuals published by the manufacturers).
• Troubleshooting tables with the most frequent problems aff ecting the equipment with possible causes and actions that
may resolve these problems.
• A list of basic defi nitions of some of the specialized terms used.
• For some equipment, additional themes related to calibration, quality control and design (with operational controls).
This information, along with good use and care, helps to maintain laboratory equipment in optimal condition