How To Repair Digital Vernier Caliper | All You Need To Know

There is no dearth of options on the market if you’re looking for precision tools like the best digital caliper or micrometer. 

But the performance of such tools depends not only on their quality but also on how well they are maintained and stored. As delicate instruments, digital calipers can easily get damaged when not stored properly. 

Such damage usually occurs due to high impact or improper positioning of the calipers and, in certain cases, can be repaired using a few simple methods. Here, in this guide, we’ve mentioned some of the ways to repair a digital caliper. 

Also, we’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions regarding these tools, so make sure to read until the end. 

Now, let’s dive in! 

Working Of A Digital Vernier Caliper

Digital caliper sitting on case on wooden floor working of a digital vernier caliper
Ⓒ Architecture Lab | Anton Giuroiu

The first step of the repair process involves understanding how a digital vernier caliper works since it does not function like dial calipers or a traditional vernier caliper. 

These conventional tools have a rack and pinion mechanism, which is absent from the digital device. In fact, digital calipers do not have any mechanical parts attaching the sliding mechanism to the circuits. Instead, they have a series of sensors arranged in a parallel manner along the measuring beam. 

It is the function of these sensors to detect any changes in the electrical charge on altering the distance between the jaws of the tool. These calipers also have many rectangular copper plates below the scale, and a circuit board below the markings, together forming a capacitor. 

When the jaw of the caliper moves along the scale, it changes the alignment of the copper plates, also altering the capacitance. When that happens, a signal is sent to the chip present within the caliper, which shows the measurements on the display. 

Common Faults With Digital Calipers

Some common problems that occur with digital calipers include: 

1. Unchanging Digits

The display of your digital caliper may sometimes show permanent units or symbols unrelated to the measurement, usually due to an error in the circuitry. To fix this problem, simply remove the battery and put it back a few times until the symbols vanish. 

2. Blinking Units

This happens due to low electric power, and you will need to replace the batteries with new ones to fix this issue.  

3. Incorrect Display

When the shielding sticker becomes damp, it can cause errors resulting in incorrect numbers on the display. In this case, also, you will need to replace the batteries. 

4. No Display

No or limited display occurs when the batteries are not in good condition and may be contaminated. In that case, decontaminate them and test if they are working properly before putting them back inside the caliper. 

The Repair Process

Corrosion is one of the most common issues with digital calipers, which can occur if a battery has been left inside for a long time and has caused a leakage. Alternatively, the battery holder can easily snap off. 

You will need to disassemble the measuring tool to repair any faults that may have occurred due to such causes. First, remove the sticker from the back, which will provide access to the four screws that secure the case. 

Once these screws have been removed, take out the case and keep it aside, and you will be able to access the main circuit board. This will also be attached to the enclosure using a few screws and can be similarly removed. 

If there is any corrosion on the battery contact, you can remove it using a small file, and the board can be cleaned using a cotton bud and some flux. Once done, the contacts will have to be retinned to get them into proper working shape. 

Finally, to fix a broken battery holder, simply solder it back. 

How To Maintain Your Digital Caliper

Proper maintenance of your digital caliper can prevent it from getting damaged and ensure that it functions optimally for a long period. In this section, we’ve mentioned some of the ways by which you can ensure that the caliper remains in good shape. 

1. Removing Dirt And Dust

Ensure that your caliper remains clean by wiping the various surfaces regularly, which will help prevent errors in measurement. Also, avoid using the tool on rough or unclean objects since that will result in incorrect readings. 

If you’re wondering about how to clean digital calipers, the process is quite simple. Just wipe the tool with a soft, clean cloth after every use before keeping it inside its case. 

2. Avoid Using Other Tools With The Caliper

Keeping your digital caliper with instruments such as drills, hammers, files, or any other tool can easily damage it. It is highly delicate, especially the LCD display, which can break easily in case of an accident. 

Similarly, do not put the caliper on the lathe machine, as it can fall from it, and its jaws can break, damaging the tool. 

3. Use The Caliper For A Specific Purpose

A digital caliper should not be used as an alternative to other tools and should only be used for the purpose it is designed for. Using it for other purposes can damage it and affect its functioning, adversely affecting the business. 

4. Do Not Place The Caliper In Extreme Temperatures

A digital caliper is a delicate tool that requires an ideal temperature to function properly. This temperature should be close to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. The main reason for this is that the materials used for constructing the caliper tend to expand at higher temperatures, which can affect its accuracy. 

You should ensure that the surface of the object and the Vernier caliper should be at the same temperature. Otherwise, the surfaces may expand at different rates, which can cause imprecise readings. This is also why it should not be kept in direct sunlight or other heat sources like a furnace or electric cooker.  

5. Ensuring Correct Positioning And Location

When cleaning your digital caliper, make sure not to place it near magnetic surfaces, such as a magnetic bench. Doing so can magnetize the tool and make it difficult to get correct readings when you measure various objects and surfaces. 

Digital caliper sitting on case on wooden floor
Ⓒ Architecture Lab | Anton Giuroiu

How To Repair Digital Vernier Caliper FAQs

  • Should Digital Calipers Be Calibrated Regularly?

    Being one of the most commonly used tools for precision measurements, regular calibration is essential to keep your digital calipers in good working condition. It ensures that the measurements are accurate, readings are correct, and helps ensure conformance with various industry standards. 

  • What Is The Best Way To Oil Digital Calipers?

    If you’re wondering how to oil a digital caliper, the best way is to use a soft cloth, dip it in oil, and gently wipe the steel areas. However, make sure not to put any oil on the scale and wipe away any excess oil using a clean cloth. 

  • How Long Do Digital Calipers Last Before They Need To Be Replaced?

    With proper maintenance and care, digital calipers can easily last for a long time. The average period is five years, with regular battery replacements, frequent oiling, and proper calibration. But this period can vary depending on how you store the caliper. 

  • How To Repair Digital Vernier Caliper Final Thoughts

    While many of the problems that occur with digital calipers can be fixed at home, there are a few for which professional repairs are the best. This is because professionals generally possess the tools and the training required for the process, and the chances of damaging the tool are considerably lower. 

    If you’re having trouble with your caliper, we recommend first replacing the battery and checking the tool again. In case it still does not work, and you’re unsure about the DIY repair methods, it is best to take it to a professional. 

    Also, remember that proper maintenance and storage can go a long way in preventing such problems. 

    Want to know about more informative articles like this? Checkout our next article on are non-electric bidets worth it to know more on the topic. Many people find it difficult to choose between electric and non-electric, and you shouldn’t be one of them. 

    With that said, we shall now be taking our leave. Until next time! 

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