- Pro: Can detect temps as low as -20° F to 932º F
- Pro: Excellent for HVAC, refrigeration, and food service industries
- Pro: Small and Lightweight for Tooll Belt
- Cons: Some customers reported slow reading
- Cons: It is not waterproof for an industrial product
Fluke 62 MAX IR Thermometer Review
When it comes to measuring devices used by technicians, Fluke is a fabled name and the Fluke 62 MAX IR Thermometer is a gold standard by which other non-contact thermometers should be measured. You’ll pay a premium in order to get this one in your hands, but many people will tell you the truth: it’s worth it.
The Good Stuff
Fluke’s devices are made for professionals, and it shows in the quality of their products in every single detail. Whether you’re a commercial painter, HVAC repair specialist, or anyone else working in the trade field, this is an excellent tool for your collection.
It’s small, lightweight, and will clip to your belt with no problems. In addition to that, Fluke does some real field testing with their equipment: it’s also rated to take a 3m drop without any damage.
It’s rated for dust and water resistance as well. You can’t stick it in a pool, but it’ll hold up to rain and large splashes from liquids, which are a real hazard to equipment on some job sites.
The temperatures measured are pretty extreme, running from -20°F to 932°F. There’s not much you won’t be able to measure with it, and the 10:1 distance to spot ratio means you’ll be able to stand at a safe distance from truly hot equipment and with dual lasers to guide your aim you won’t have any trouble pinpointing hot spots in ducting or any other precision application.
The return on the Fluke 62 may as well be instantaneous, most people aren’t going to have any trouble just tapping the trigger and getting a reading unless they’ve got insanely fast fingers.
The programming is pretty impressive as well. In addition to the high/low and average settings you’ll be able to find on any IR thermometer, you’ve also got differential measurements and you can even set alarms for when something is out of place.
The recent redesign has made a thermometer that fits easily in the hand. The benefit of superior ergonomics aren’t really seen for most people, but if you’re in the field and need to use it continuously for a long period of time you’ll be glad for the thought put into it.
One thing Fluke is famous for is their circuitry. If you’re an electronics geek you might fall in love when you see it, but even if you have no idea what you’re looking at you’ll appreciate the solid connections and amazing longevity of this thermometer.
Now, not all IR thermometers can do this trick: you can set the emissivity rating of the Fluke 62 MAX IR to be able to read just about any type of material with pinpoint accuracy. You won’t find any other brand that offers this feature at the same price.
It also runs on common AA batteries, meaning that you’re not likely to find yourself having to scrounge around in order to get your batteries since pretty much everywhere carries them.
It’s a high-quality piece of equipment, meant for serious use, and every aspect of this thermometer shows that.
The Bad Stuff
The first thing most people who look at the Fluke 62 MAX IR are going to see is that it’s expensive. The price point is pretty high, and if you’re only looking to spot test your stove or check for hot or cold spots in your home then it might not be worth the investment.
It’s also got a lot of functionality, which translates to some pretty complicated usage for those who aren’t familiar with it. The manual covers everything you need to know, but if machinery regularly baffles you then you might want to go with something a little bit less complex.
Of course, some users have found the manual to be pretty much worthless, so you might be on your own if you’re trying to get through all of the settings in order to get the maximum usage out of it.
You’ll also need to get your emissivity data elsewhere, there’s no instructions on it. Not much of a problem for most people, but it’s likely something that should have been in the manual in the first place.
There is a problem with the common batteries: you’ll only get about eight hours of run time per AA that you stick in it. This means that professionals may have to keep some on hand, especially if they’re prone to leaving devices on when they’re not in use.
If you’re looking for a high-quality IR thermometer that can stand on its own in pretty much any environment, take the plunge with the Fluke 62 MAX IR and you won’t be disappointed. Fluke’s products are some of the best around, and they’re worthy of their reputation.
On the other hand, if you don’t really need one for work and aren’t worried about being able to calibrate the emissivity of objects you may want to save yourself some money and go with something a bit cheaper.