What is Tare?

At Marsden Weighing Group, we like to provide help and guidance in using weighing scales as much as we like to provide the actual scales!

We’ve recently published a number of ‘What is…?’ blog posts related to the weighing scale industry - What is BMI?, What is NAWI?, and also an explanation on why you would use platform scales in industry.

Now, for those who are new to using digital weighing equipment - or just haven’t used all the functions of a digital weighing scale yet - here’s an explanation of the ‘tare’ function on a weighing scale.

Tare is one function that applies, in one way or another, to all Marsden scales. It can be explained like this:

Net weight (the weight of the goods/patient) = Gross weight (the total weight) - tare weight (the weight of the empty container/bed etc).

Let’s look at some examples.

Medical ‘Tare’

For users of medical weighing scales, tare is often used to remove the weight of clothes - or, in the case of bed weighers, the weight of the bed, and with wheelchair scales, the weight of the wheelchair.

It’s most likely to be used when patients are weighed in bed using a bed weigher. The empty bed is weighed first - by pressing the ‘tare’ button and then placing the bed on the scale, and then the weight of the bed shows as a minus number of the bed weigher’s indicator.

When the bed is rolled onto the bed weigher pads, with the weight of the bed now taken off the indicator’s reading, only the weight of the patient is shown - meaning the hospital or care home has an accurate reading of the patient’s weight.

Additionally, a number of Marsden medical weighing scales, like the M-950 Bed Weigher, have a preset tare function. This means the weight of the bed can be inputted into the indicator without the empty bed having to be weighed. The weight of the bed is stored, meaning the patient can stay in their bed before, during and after weighing - because when they are weighed, with the preset tare selected, the patient is weighed without the weight of the bed included.

Industrial ‘Tare’

The tare function probably sees greater use in industry than on medical scales. As an example, using platform scales is far easier with a tare function - because when palletised goods are weighed on platform scales, the weight of the pallet can be ‘tared’ off - meaning just the weight of the goods is shown.

As with medical weighing scales, particularly the M-950, the preset tare function is also highly useful. It means the weight of the pallet can be entered manually into the platform scale’s indicator, and then palletised goods can be weighed without the weight of the pallet included, or the empty pallet ever having to be weighed.

The tare function is a highly useful feature, used across many industries - and it’s a feature you won’t find on a mechanical scale. If you’d like more information about tare, which Marsden scales have a tare feature, or how to use it, just get in touch.