Best Micron Gauge: Buying Guide [Recommended in 2022]

In homes and many industrial areas, a good air condition system is needed and must be paired with the best micron gauge for HVAC. A working HVAC system will protect you from extreme humidity and harsh temperatures.

For that air conditioning system to stay in good shape and functioning optimally, you need to check dehydration and vacuum levels. With a micron gauge, you can measure these values quickly and accurately.

Now, what is the best vacuum gauge HVAC available? You will have to do a detailed check to find this out. That process can be daunting since there are several brands and too many products in the market.

To save you the stress, we have researched on your behalf and have compiled a list of the best vacuum gauges for HVAC you can find on the market. Keep reading and you will not be disappointed.

What Is A Micron Gauge Used For?

micron gauge

Heating, ventilation and air condition (HVAC) systems can be expensive to install. With the amount of money spent on them from the onset, it is a wise decision to use a micron gauge for professional maintenance.

A micron gauge is a device that can accurately measure the vacuum level inside your HVAC system.

Airborne particles like dander, dust, viruses, and molds are calculated in microns. These particles can circulate your HVAC system and are very harmful to you and your family's health.

With a micron gauge, you can measure the pressure and micron levels inside an HVAC system. Some versatile vacuum gauges can measure the output and input of liquid gas and also have some unique features.

The digital models of vacuum gauges are extremely accurate. The new designs and overall advanced construction of these micron gauges prevent air from entering the sensor. In addition, they are easy to set up and they attach tightly.

This results in less struggle in using them and significantly higher accuracy of readings. Analog models can measure 1,000 to 4,000 microns while digital versions can reach up to 12,000-micron readings.

For added reliability, the best HVAC micron gauge will be leakproof. Even the slightest pressure leaks can set off your entire reading so it is important to have a leakproof micron gauge.

Top 10 Best Micron Gauges

1. Fieldpiece SM480V SMAN Refrigerant Manifold+ Micron Gauge

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If you have been lugging a bag of clamps, thermometers, and equipment around, you have to drop them all for the SM480V.

This masterpiece micron gauge from Fieldpiece is a true testament to their desire to help professionals do their work faster, easier, and better. This advanced wireless gauge is rugged. The sight glass is properly sealed in a tough casing with a reinforced hook. 

This micron gauge has a memory drive that will store up to 9 readings for up to 7 days. You can transfer this information out via a USB port. It is also a customizable machine with which you can set alarms for high or low vacuum alarms.

The 5-inch LCD screen is wide and well-lit. It is also impact-resistant to withstand falls and strong weather. You can use this micron gauge in a controlled laboratory environment or under harsh weather conditions.

It will hold in both situations and deliver a very accurate reading. The tough water-resistant case makes sure you can get a good reading no matter where your location or weather is. 

We don't recommend repeatedly exposing this micron gauge to rain and water, but when you do, your machine will not pack up. This machine operates on 6 alkaline batteries of size AA. The battery can last up to 350 hours before changing.

Highlighted Features

  • Water-resistant.
  • Micro USB port.
  • Uses 6 AA batteries.
  • 800 Psig maximum pressure.

2. Supco VG64 Vacuum Gauge

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If you're looking for a portable and powerful micron gauge with strong battery life, this is the best choice for you. Supco’s VG64 digital vacuum gauge is sturdy, small, and very powerful.

The gauge has an ultra-fine resolution of 1000 to 0.5 microns and a vacuum range of up to 12,000 microns. It is a great high precision gauge tool for use in laboratory tests. 

The sensors are sensitive but this gauge can be used in the outdoors too. The gauge has a good-sized LCD screen with a backlight. Results can be displayed in 7 different units including Psi, Pa, and micron. 

The screen is highly responsive and updates information every 0.5 seconds. This highly interactive vacuum gauge paired with sensitive sensors is extremely accurate in different situations.

The audio and visual alarm system is very effective. It is 100 percent programmable so that every user can customize it to their specific needs. You can set the alarm for high or low vacuums and it will indicate when a threshold is reached.

When the alarm is activated or disabled, the device will automatically shut off eight hours later. This micron gauge is strong and built to last. It also has a hanging apparatus built-in to the gauge for convenience.

Highlighted Features

  • Visual and audio alarm.
  • Battery life is 900 hours.
  • Low battery indicator.

3. CPS VG200 Micron Gauge

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Need a highly reliable and accurate micron gauge? The CPS VG200 is calibrated to NIST standards to ensure a tight ship. It is one of the best digital micron gauges for accuracy and precision reading. The large LCD can show 5 digits at a time and is very well lit. during any evacuation process, the screen will continuously read out the results as you work.

It is easy to use this screen and very simple too. The advanced design of this gauge has a futuristic sensor with a thermistor bridge that is self-heated. Temperature compensation is also automatic with the new design. 

This micron gauge is easy to clean. On the field, it can withstand positive energy up to 400 Psi during cleaning. As the user, you can select the unit you want to work with. The options are torr, microns, mBar, or hg/in.

This compact micron gauge is easy to work with. Some customers complained that this gauge will shut down after 11 minutes of inactivity.

However, this is a battery-saving setting that is good for you as it will help your power last longer for an effective micron gauge. To turn it back on, just press any button and the gauge will come back to life for your continued work. 

The only downside we found was the battery compartment. You need tools to open this up as opposed to a simple latch and hook system. Also, there is no indication as to how you should insert the battery, you have to figure it out so as not to damage it by negative polarization.

Highlighted Features

  • Electric power source with cord.
  • Choose between units.
  • Can handle 400 Psi pressure.
  • Super portable.

4. Testo 552 Digital Vacuum Gauge

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Designed and manufactured by a company with nearly 65 years of experience, the Testo 552 has no choice but to be great. Like every portable measurement solution produced by this company, this micron gauge provides the highest quality, value, and service.

Fitted with high-quality Pirani sensors, the 552 gauge is the best micron gauge for HVAC that is very precise with single-digit resolution. With this instrument, you will get live measurements in saturation of water. 

That will show the exact temperature and micron levels for evacuation. You can easily and quickly check if evaporation levels reach your evacuation target to show you that your HVAC system is free of humidity and contaminants.

The portable micron gauge has a good backlit screen with proper illumination and an alarm system to notify you during pressure evacuation. To be sure you have a proper, complete evaluation, this gauge will display H20 saturation temperatures.

For proper reporting and analysis, there is a Bluetooth communication line that can wirelessly connect to your phone or tablet. Apart from seeing results displayed, this can help you create reports and send your data via SMS or email.

This advanced micron gauge has a free app. With the Testo Smart Probes Application, you can use the accurate measurements on your micron gauge on your smartphone. The app will allow you to easily view and update all your data right from the screen of your smartphone.

Because the strong battery can last up to 50 hours, this is a great portable micron gauge for when you’re on the move. There is no cord power source to hold you back or limit your movements.

Highlighted Features

  • 20,000-micron measuring range.
  • Two AA batteries are needed.
  • Up to 50 hours of battery life.

5. APPION AV760 Digital Vacuum Gauge

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This is a very sensitive micron gauge that will be handy and accurate no matter the type of job you have to do. Whether you need this for laboratory tests or some vacuum measurement high on a roof, it will be exact and accurate. Don't worry about the sensor being so sensitive.

The high-quality sensor is protected by two layers of industry-grade filter material. This will increase the stability and accuracy of results even when there is high vibration from your system. This will also increase the longevity of the micron gauge.

This modern gauge also comes with an app and works wirelessly. Downloading the app is very quick and easy and the range of operation is at a good 50 feet or so. This is a solid and rugged gauge that is handy and will hit the mark every time you need a measurement done.

Although this is a corded power source gauge, the battery life on this gauge is excellent. After every charge, you can use the machine for 6 hours without interruptions.

If you’re not an extremely heavy user, that is enough time to get all your measurements and proofing done for one week. Note, however, that there is a slight jolt in reading when your Bluetooth is turned on. 

This is not a significant change, just 20 microns, but it is worthy of noting so you can extract that value from your results. Overall, this is a very good and strong micron gauge that will stand the test of time.

Highlighted Features

  • Corded electric power source.
  • Wireless connectivity.
  • Double filter protection.
  • Measures from the atmosphere to 1 micron.

6. Yellow Jacket 69020 Omni Vacuum Gauge 

If you are very big on portability, you need to get a tiny micron gauge like this one from Yellow Jacket. Under 10-inches long and weighing just 0.01 ounces, this is a super small and lightweight device that can deliver accurate readings for you no matter where you are.

Once you turn this machine on, you will see it is easy to use from the factory settings. This display is made with high-impact glass and the entire housing is reinforced. 

That means any accidental drops, attachment to high-pressure lines, or moisture issues will not affect the integrity of this machine's results. This is a strong micron gauge for such a small machine. It's very hard to go wrong when you go for Yellow Jacket products.

The vacuum sensor handles can take up to 450 Psi of positive pressure and the sensor handles are simple to clean.

This machine can read vacuums in different units including milli-bar, microns, pascal, and torr. The battery life is good and many power-saving options help with this. There are different selections with which your machine will go on a time-out when idle. 

There is also an automatic power-down feature that sets the micron gauge in hibernation mode until the new activity is detected. Manufactured under the strictest industry standards in the United States, this compact vacuum gauge is surely loaded with great features to justify the price.

Although the Yellow Jacket 69020 vacuum gauge is not yellow, there is a strong relationship between how easily you can use this tiny device under the glare of the yellow sun.

The biggest problem many micron gauge operators have is reading correct results in different conditions. With the LED-backlit screens of today, sunlight and glare are enemies of easy reading. 

However, this micron gauge has a paper display that is clean and very easy to read, no matter the lighting conditions.

Highlighted Features

  • Automatic power-saving shut down.
  • Can handle up to 450 Psi of pressure.
  • The electronic paper display supports clear visibility in all light conditions.
  • Audio and visual alarm when a vacuum is reached.

7. Elitech VG-760 Vacuum Gauge 

Looking for the best HVAC micron gauge that will remain accurate while filling refrigerants? Elitech’s VG-760 is an excellent tool for this job. This machine comes well packaged in a protective case and soft bubble wrap.

From the inset, you know the company has gone to great lengths to keep the product in good condition. This machine has a professional vacuum sensor to test precise vacuums. 

If the moisture or air in your HVAC system is mixed with refrigerants, you will get an acidic reaction that can be hazardous to health. This powerful vacuum gauge will test different types of systems to determine leaks and show vacuum pump quality for best results.

With the VG-760, you can switch between eight different units to match your preferred taste. Psia, torr, mTorr, mbar, inHg, Pa, kPa, and micron are all available. This machine is powered by three AA-style batteries.

There is an automatic battery saver feature that kicks in after 15 minutes of idle time. The machine will go into hibernation mode until you press any button to start it up again. With minimum battery use, you can save power and have your batteries last up to 300 hours. 

This is excellent and reduces maintenance costs because you don't have to replace your batteries so often.

To avoid damaging the sensitive sensors, make sure to always keep the pressure below 27.5 bar. Also, note that the gauge display will read blank until you get to a reading of 19000 or above.

Highlighted Features

  • Powered by three AA batteries.
  • The battery can last up to 300 hours.
  • Measure from 0 microns to 19,000 microns.
  • 8 measuring units available.

8. TPI 605 Digital Vacuum Guage 

When working on a modern heat pump or AC system, you need a modern tool to match the advanced needs.

The 605 digital vacuum gauge from TPI is an excellent tool to have in your shed in this modern age. It has been seriously modified to take on complicated HVAC systems and others while always giving accurate measurements. 

You can read vacuum in seven different internationally recognized units including psi, mBar, Torr, mTorr, Pascals, inHg, and microns. The display updates frequently. Every half of a second, you will get real-time updates sent directly to the widescreen for easy viewing.

This handy gauge can measure microns from 0 to 25 microns in all conditions. Whether you're using it in a lab or real industry situations, it will give the same good results.

The manufacturers added the convenience of a hanging hook for easy storage and use even while in service. 

You can hang your micron gauge in a spot and get accurate readings without moving it around. Because this gauge is powered from a cord, it has to be connected to a source and the hook makes more sense for that.

For battery and energy saving, there is an automatic battery shut-off feature that kicks in after 10 minutes of inactivity. This will help save your battery so it lasts longer and you can start your machine up again whenever you need to continue.

Highlighted Features

  • Corded electric power mode.
  • Automatic power-saving feature.
  • In-built hanging hook.
  • Can read vacuum in seven different units.

9. Robinair RAVG-1 Micron Vacuum Gauge 

Tired of dragging a truckload of equipment to every gig? Or have you had no good luck landing a portable micron gauge that performs optimally in different conditions?

We must introduce you to Robinair’s RAVG-1, one of the most sophisticated and best digital vacuum gauges for field service. 

This is a standalone micron gauge that can be used anywhere for the best results. It comes packed in a portable and convenient case for easy transportation and storage. 

Many field gauges are affected by temperature but not the RAVG-1. This machine can measure a vacuum from pure atmosphere up to 10 microns.

You can switch between 6 different measuring units including microns, mBar, inHg, mmHg, Torr, and Pa. This machine can also handle pressure up to 30 bars.

The first time you turn this gauge on, it will not read zero as some products do. A nominal indication of the current atmospheric pressure will display to show you the gauge is ready to be used.

The first values are just to show that your micron gauge does not yet detect a vacuum but is aware of the normal atmosphere. 

Don't use this gauge as the benchmark to measure real-life atmospheric conditions. This unit has a very unique feature, the first of its kind in the industry. It employs a multiple color system that lights up in the back when there is a leakage or you have reached a vacuum. 

This instant lighting system serves as an alarm of sorts without the noise. This is a strong vacuum gauge built with impact-resistant material and water-resistant. It also has rubber boot protection and an in-built hanging hook for convenience.

Highlighted Features

  • First-ever multi-color backlight alarm system.
  • Vacuum can be read in 6 different scales.
  • Protective rubber boot.
  • In-built hook.
  • Water-resistant case.

10. F2C HVAC Manifold Gauge Set

For professionals who want the old feel with the new accuracy, this manifold gauge set is ideal. Although this is a complete diagnostic and servicing set, it can be easily carried around in the heavy-duty compact case designed to conveniently carry all parts.

The entire set is only 2.5kg, so you can easily carry it with you on jobs at home or the move. The gauge features a unique easel design that makes viewing easier. The electronic control panel has a widescreen with a full backlight. 

When not used for 10 seconds, the backlight will automatically shut off to save energy. Power saver mode also kicks in and automatically shuts down the scale when not in use for up to 10 minutes. The scale has a carrying capacity of 100kg. Results can be read in kg, lb, or oz.

This is a very durable gauge set. It is made from thick aluminum and silicone for high traction and zero slippage.

The tanks will remain stable on the refrigerant charging scale to maintain the highest accuracy. Note that this is a full set with different parts and not one portable micron gauge. 

You will get a complete service and diagnostics gauge set that can be used on all air condition systems. It has a 10 amps charging rate which is high. This gauge set is ideal for automotive or home use, so professionals and home users alike can enjoy it.

Highlighted Features

  • 100kg capacity.
  • Can read in kg, lb, and oz.
  • Automatic scale and backlight shut off for energy-saving mode.
  • 9v DC power source.

Factors To Consider Before Buying Micron Gauge

When the time comes to purchase a new vacuum gauge, consider the following factors before making a final decision.

  • Type

You can get a direct or indirect vacuum gauge. Essentially, they both do the same work but they have some dissimilarities you should think about beforehand.

Direct gauges are not dependent on gas. They refer to digital and mechanical dial gauges that convert pressure to a digital signal that will show on a screen. 

The indirect type depends on gas to use the thermal transfer or ionization methods. Indirect gauges are cheap but tend to break down more frequently, while direct gauges are costlier but will stand the test of time.

  • Accuracy

The accuracy of a micron gauge is measured in percentage. However, the higher the percentage of accuracy, the higher the cost of the micron gauge and vice versa.

You can check how to calculate the accuracy percentage of a micron gauge.

  • Pressure Range

The pressure range of a micron gauge is extremely important. A useful pressure range lies between 7.6 x 103 and 1 x 10-13 torr, but this type can be costly to maintain.

You should go for a micron gauge that has different pressure range options. Because of that versatility, you can use it in different applications.

  • Size

If the micron gauge you select is too small, you may have a hard time reading the results from the tiny screen.

If you’re using this tool quite frequently, make sure to go for one with a large screen your eyes will be comfortable with and not a tiny device you will have to squint to see all the time.

  • Power Source

Different micron gauges operate on different power sources from the battery to electricity, or VAC line.

You should get a portable gauge that runs on batteries if you need it for emergencies on the go. If you're using it inside a factory or lab., one with a cable to connect to electricity will work just fine.

  • Where It Will Be Used 

If you need to use your micron gauge outside the house when there is harsh weather, you must buy one that is built solidly and can withstand the elements.

You can go for a sensitive gauge if you will be using it in a laboratory or other controlled environments.

Don’t look at any product at face value. Consider these important factors and you will be guided to make the correct choice.

How To Use A Micron Gauge?

How To Use A Micron Gauge

Before we explain how to use the best vacuum gauge to conduct a test, you should know about some key terms. Dehydration refers to the removal of moisture while degassing is the extraction of air and non-condensables.

The combination of both processes is what completes the evacuation process. Now, let us go through the steps on how to use a micron gauge:

  • Step 1: Setup

Start by removing all core values. Look on either side of your HVAC system and locate the back of the core tools.

Get large diameter hoses and connect those vacuum-rated hoses to your core tools. With the help of your trusty manifold vacuum gauge, connect the other end of the hoses to your vacuum pump.

  • Step 2: Pulling A Vacuum

Make sure all valves and open and then pull a vacuum. You must isolate the gauge from the pump to make sure there is no chance of any gas permeating through the hoses.

Look out for a reading of 300 to 400 on your sensors. Once this happens, shut the valves on the high and low sides of the HVAC system. Do this while the micron gauge is open.

  • Step 3: Install Gauge

With a brass connector or copper line, connect your gauge to the core. Use a ¼ inch connector on the suction line to measure if your pump can slowly reach a vacuum of 1,500.

Allow 10 to 20 minutes for all system pressure to equalize and you will know how much moisture your system has.

  • Step 4: Change Oil

Depending on the discovered moisture level, you have to change your oil after every job. Besides, the oil must be changed while it is warm or the moisture will separate from the oil and attach instead to the metal on the pump.

Because of this, you should keep checking the vacuum gauge to make sure the pump gets the right vacuum to eliminate all moisture from inside the HVAC system.

Benefits Of Micron Gauges

Whether you're a professional or a house owner looking to handle your HVAC maintenance, a micron gauge is a handy tool to have. With this small tool, you can figure out the exact vacuum level in your air condition system.

To facilitate the longevity of your systems, this device will help you measure dehydration and degassing levels. With that said, here are some strong benefits of a micron gauge and why you should have one in your toolbox.

Immediately Reading Pressure Change: the best digital micron gauge will find leaks promptly in real-time. That means you don't have to cramp your arm for a long time holding your gauge in place to get a good reading.

Even when there is a high vibration, you can get steady, instant readings from your micron gauge.

Large Screen: with the development of modern micron gauges, the screens have also developed over the years. We now have larger touch screens with amazing features like water and impact resistance.

Even short-sighted people can now enjoy the most out of micron gauges with the large, interactive, back-lit LCD screens.

No Interpretation Required: gone are the days when you had to hire a professional to get the job done because readings needed interpretation. With today's micron gauges, you can be your interpreter because readings are straightforward.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a digital micron gauge?

This type of micron gauge is direct and more modern. There have been many moderations and technological advancements on the former analog micron gauges to bring about modern digital machines.

2. How do you know when there is a leak?

If you cannot achieve lower than 5000 microns, there is probably a leak in the system. It could be bad vacuum pump oil or leaky hoses.

Once you can get the numbers below 5000 microns, it means the evacuation process is working fine.

3. Is 1000 microns a good vacuum?

Many experts recommend extraction of below 1000 microns for removal of moisture, and below 500 microns for when a compressor is replaced. With a good vacuum pump, you can get as low as 200 to 400 microns.

4. How long does it take to achieve 500 microns?

Because the process of removing water takes time, it will probably take more than 10 minutes. Give 12 to 15 minutes for this process to finish properly.

5. How can you clean a micron gauge?

Pour plenty of rubbing alcohol onto the sensor and use one of your fingers to cover the opening of the fitting. Shake the alcohol around for some seconds so it can clean.

Pour out the excess alcohol and repeat the process at least twice. Leave the gauge to dry and try pulling a vacuum to help the drying process along.

Conclusion

You can only make a good choice on a micron gauge purchase if you know exactly what device will fit your needs.

Instead of making a stressful study on this topic to find the best vacuum gauge for you, go through the detailed information we have put together here to make a valuable purchase.

We highly recommend the Testo 552 Digital Vacuum Gauge. This is a cost-friendly option that does not skimp on quality. This highly advanced micron gauge is fully wireless and can be used from 50 feet away on your smartphone or tablet.

Although it is on the high-end side, Elitech VG-760 Vacuum Gauge is an excellent choice for professionals who want to be deadly accurate when changing out refrigerants.

It is very costly to make a mistake on the industrial level and you need a powerful tool like the VG-760 to save you in such situations.

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