Operation Of Autoclave SOP with achieving effective sterilization is given in this post.

Purpose:                        

To describe the procedure for the safe operation of Autoclave to achieve effective sterilization.

Scope:

This SOP is applicable to the safe and effective operation of autoclaves.

Responsibility:

Microbiologist

Assistant Microbiology

Accountability:

Quality Control Manager

Procedure:

Open the lid of the autoclave by moving the valves in anticlockwise                      direction with the help of clamp and unload the autoclave.

Pour enough purified water into the autoclave such that the heating coils              are completely submerged in water and load the autoclave with the  material or items to be autoclaved.

Close the lid and clamp the screws in place.

Connect the main cord to the supply socket and switch it on.

At the start of steam sterilization process steam formation will occur  after the boiling of water.

Pressure gauge will show a gradual increase in the reading when the needle reached by 7psi then remove the steam by opening the safety valve to avoid any air pockets in the steam that could cause an abrupt increase in steam pressure which could lead to explosive burst of the autoclave.

Repeat this step at least for three times so that no air pockets will remain in the steam.

After the air pockets are removed from steam properly then display of pressure gauge will again start showing a gradual increase in the pressure from zero to 15psi.

When the needle reaches 15psi then note the time and continue the                     process for atleast 15 minutes for complete sterilization.

Cleaning:

Clean the Autoclave from outside with a cloth moistened  in disinfectant solution.

Clean the Autoclave daily after completion of daily work.

Record the cleaning in log book.

Precautions:

Do not open the lid of the autoclave when the cycle is running.

Take care during handling of the articles as they will be hot, after sterilization.

After completion of the cycle, open the lid of the autoclave when the pressure   gauge shows “0” reading and temperature gauge shows below 90°C.

Heating coils should be completely submerged in water.