Gas Detector Tubes and Who Uses Them

by | Jul 15, 2021 | Gas Detection, Latest News

Sourcing gas detectors can be confusing. Will it measure my target gas? Can it be used anywhere? What’s the total cost of ownership? Then there’s the problem of trying to find a solution within your price range.

Gastec detector tubes have been around for many years. They’ll continue to be used, because users see the benefits of detector tubes:

1. Measure VOCs cost-effectively

When it comes to measuring VOCs, using a PID may be the obvious choice – The most widely recognised technology for detecting VOCs. Whilst PIDs have many benefits, they also have some disadvantages;

The first is their expense – PID lamps are expensive to replace.

Secondly, PID detectors only recognise VOC gases as a total reading.

For reporting individual gases, an alternative technology is required. There are gas detection systems that can identify individual gases but the technology (spectrometry or photoacoustic) is very expensive.

As an alternative to a PID, gas detector tubes can be used to specify the individual VOC gases at a fraction of the cost.


2. Recognised as the standard test method in the industry

In the oil and gas, chemical and petrochemical industries, gas detector tubes are the recognised standard test method for measuring Mercaptans, Benzene or exotic gases.

Tubes are recognised as the test method because they provide inexpensive screening. The design also means the test can be performed by non-technical personnel with minimal training.


3. Easy measurement of exotic gases

The most popular gas detectors (usually electrochemical sensor based) don’t have the capability to measure exotic gases such as Mercaptans or Benzene. The measurement of exotic gases proves to be more difficult using cost-effective technology.

With a library of over 300 gases, gas detector tubes can pretty much measure any gas. This is all done using the same system and at the same cost.


4. Ready when you are

As long as gas detector tubes are stored in the right conditions, most types have a shelf life of up to 3 years. This means that they can be stored until they’re ready to be used. Once called into action, they don’t require a sense check, they’re ready to go. If you compare this to an electronic gas detector, most gas detectors contain an oxygen sensor which deteriorates over time.  Electronic sensors need to be bump tested prior to use and should be calibrated at least every 6 months.

This is particularly useful in applications that don’t have immediate access to a gas detection service centre. For example – marine and shipping industry where vessels are travelling for long periods of time. Detector tubes can be left in storage until required. Another example could be where environmental consultants are expected to perform a gas test every now and then. It’s far more cost-effective to buy a pack of tubes than to manage the costs of maintaining a gas detector.

So gas detector tubes can be used to carry out a simple gas test without having to worry about preparing the gas sensor and making sure it’s safe to use.

5. Low cost of ownership

Following the initial one-off outlay of purchasing an air sampling pump for about £185, the only ongoing consumable cost is for the glass gas tubes. The gas detector tubes are low cost with a pack of 10 tubes costing less than £30.

With no calibration required (with electronic gas detectors a 6 monthly calibration is recommended), there are no on-going costs associated with detector tubes.

Some gas detector tube manufacturers price each tube differently. Gastec make it easy by having one consistent price, which makes it easier for procurement processes.


What are Gastec gas detector tubes?

Gastec tubes are single-gas, single-use tubes which form a catalogue capable of measuring around 300 hazardous and toxic gases.

Most activities that the detector tube system is used for is to perform field screening and spot sampling e.g. to determine the level of hazardous gases present on-site.


Why Buy from a1-cbiss?

– As Gastec’s UK & European distributor, we know Gastec gas detector tubes better than anyone else

– Our team aims to respond to your requests within 1 hour

– We offer attractive reseller discounts

– We aim to beat any quote

– Payment is easy – You can buy online, over the phone or by email (if you have an account with us)

– We have a huge stock holding of all tube types so we offer fast delivery

– If you order before 2pm Monday to Friday, we’ll dispatch the same day (subject to availability) to anywhere in the world

– We can provide training by video call


Buy Gastec gas detector tubes from a1-cbiss