Dental equipment is essential in any office, and having even one patient room unavailable due to system failures is a significant scheduling issue for a big or small dental office. Some types of system failures are significant and may require a full replacement of the equipment.
However, in many cases, early signs of potential problems with the system are relatively easy to fix with a quick call to your local repair service. One of the systems within dental equipment that can be a source of problems is the vacuum system. Problems with the vacuum canister impact the performance of saliva ejectors and make it difficult to provide patients with a comfortable level of care expected in dental procedures.
Issues to Consider
The vacuum canister itself is a hollow, thick-walled plastic body that also has a lid or top and an O-ring to provide the seal. There is also a screen that is provided to prevent objects in the tubing from being pulled back into the canister.
In general, the actual vacuum canister body is rarely the source of any problem with the system. Instead, the O-ring can sometimes be damaged or simply become cracked or twisted. When this happens, the seal on the canister fails, limiting the amount of suction the system can produce.
When this occurs, replacing the O-ring is usually all that is required. This is a low-cost repair, but it is important to have the rest of the system inspected for any other issues. Small holes in the tubing running from the canister to the saliva ejector can become damaged and allow for leaks, and the screen may be damaged by debris. Repairing these issues at the same time extends the life of the equipment and returns the system to peak performance levels.