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Handpiece Maintenance

The major causes of handpiece failure are:

  • Sterilization

  • Lack of lubrication or proper lubrication

  • Being dropped

  • Ran with bent bur or no bur at all

  • Excessive air pressureLack of proper lubrication

Handpiece maintenance is the key to survivability. By properly cleaning and lubricating your handpiece before sterilization you insure that it will have a long life and run at its best. Running your handpiece at the Manufacturer’s suggested air pressure is very important. Higher air pressures will make your handpiece run faster but will cause premature bearing retainer wear.
Sterilization cannot be avoided and must be done in accordance with ADA/FDA regulations. Most Manufacturers recommend using an Autoclave or Chemiclave. Dry heat and cold sterilizing are generally not recommended. By using a quality lubricant/cleaner and following the procedures below you should see longer handpiece life.

Handpiece Cleaning & Lubrication Procedures

1. Clean exterior of handpiece using isopropyl alcohol and a towel
2. Spray or apply several drops of lubrication/cleaner into chuck tube
3. Spray or apply 1 to 2 drops of lubricant/cleaner into chuck area
4. Install straight bur into chuck. Ensure that bur is secure.
5. Rotate bur between thumb and index finger to help loosen debris particles lodged in turbine
6. Attach handpiece to air supply (purge units in sterilization area work best) point bur away from yourself and into clean white towel held in your opposite hand. Depress rheostat for approximately 30 seconds or until all lubricant/cleaner is expelled. The Expelled lubricant should be the same color as the contents in the lubricant bottle/can. Ensure that all lubricant is expelled.
7. Wipe away all lubricant/debris from exterior of handpiece.
8. Remove bur from handpiece.
9. Sterilize according to manufacturer’s instructions.  Allow sterilizer to complete its cycle. Never cool handpiece by running cold water over it.
10. Re-lubricate the cool sterilized handpiece. Attach to air supply or purge unit and run for approximately 15 seconds or until all excess lubricant is expelled.
11. Wipe away all excess lubricant from handpiece exterior.
12. The handpiece is now ready to be used..

With small holes up, lubricate large hole to the left

Handpiece Tips to Remember

1.) Always ensure that the handpiece has a good pliable backend gasket.

2.) Swivel adapters must have all the required o-rings. Cut shaved, brittle or missing o-rings will affect handpiece performance.

3.) Always follow the proper lubrication procedures. Ensure that the correct lube is used. Always purge your handpiece before it is sterilized.

4.) Always run your handpiece with a bur properly installed. Sterilize without.

5.) Never use bent, worn or modified burs. This will always damage the turbine bearings.

6.) Always run at the Manufacturers’ recommended air pressure. Running at higher pressures will prematurely wear out the turbine bearings.

7.) Always use the right handpiece for the job. Small or Pedo heads for carries removal, Torque style heads for heavy cutting.

8.) Autochuck Highspeed Handpieces must hold the bur to the ADA pullout specification of 4.5lbs. Never use a handpiece that does not hold the bur properly.

9.) Always clean the inside threads of the operatory connector nuts. Keeping them clean will lessen debris transfer from the handpiece to handpiece.

10.) Never use electric handpieces that are heating up. They may feel warm at the start of the procedure but may eventually get hot enough to burn someone.

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If you purchase a new hand tool and need assistance on its operation, feel free to contact us for info……..