Product Review – Draeger X-am 2500

First Look at the Draeger X-am 2500.

As with most material things in life, we tend to make a snap judgement – like or dislike. Size, feel, weight and design all go into our very quick assessment of personal choice. Just think about when you go shopping for example; something catches your eye – you pick it up, and very quickly you intuitively know if its right or not. It’s the same for most people when selecting gas detectors. They look, feel and try, check the price and tend to know immediately if they like the product or not. Then after some time they find out if it is reliable and actually does all the supplier claims!

So how does the X-am 2500 measure up?

Well, we have to say it fits the bill in terms of first look. The sleak 2500 body is relatively low weight and has an attractive design, making it un-obtrusive to wear and having that “just feels right” quality.

The standard Draeger 2 button control panel provides a relatively easy menu navigation, allowing the user to access the broad functionality, such as: peak values, warning and error codes, manual bumptest and fresh air calibrations. However, some find the menu and 2 button options slightly confusing and difficult to remember in what order to press.

The integrated protective rubber coating and xxs sensors reduce the sensitive to shock and provide additional safety in case of impact or vibration. The instrument is water and dust resistant in accordance with protection class IP67, so it should remain fully functional even if it falls into the water. But note – the low oxygen alarm will trigger as there’s no oxygen under water! (It also worth noting, once any instrument has been opened for service or repair, the exact integrity of the ingress protection isn’t certain unless checked and this in generally not the case in most, if not all service houses.  Although if you don’t agree with this feel free to comment)

The X-am 2500 can be fitted with 1 to 4 sensors and has a proven ability to detect combustible gases and vapours, as well as O2, CO, NO2, SO2 and H2S – depending on which sensors you choose to fit.

The impressive hydrogen sulphide sensor has a high resolution, so it can reliably measure even very low workplace limits, and the non-consumptive and lead-free sensor for oxygen is characterised by an especially long service life of more than 5 years.

Thanks to Draeger’s latest catalytic Ex sensor, flammables can now be detected with a high resistance to silicone and hydrogen sulphide, with Draeger claiming a service life of more than 4 years. (Our tests so far show it is a vast improvement on the previous sensor and the 4 years does appear to be realistic.) More impressive is it’s sensitivity with regard to flammable gases and vapours as tested in accordance with IEC/EN 60079-29-1 for measuring flammable gases from methane to nonane. Few manufactures have fully tested their sensors independently to this standard, so this gives and you confidence and a recognisable audit trail of the sensors detection abilities.

The 2500 can operate with either alkaline batteries or with rechargeable NiMH batteries enabling a reliable power supply for more than 12 hours, and with the high capacity battery pack more than 13 hours.

The X-am 2/5000 range of instruments also come with an external pump option which we will review later.

So what do we think?

Well it’s fair to say the X-am 2500 is a market leader for entry level personal 4 gas detection. Size, feel, weight and design are spot on and the reliability appears to be as claimed by the manufacturor. The price however can be restrictive for some users, so it’s definitely worth looking round to make sure you are getting the best deal before buying one. Also if you want to have the infra-red flammable sensor, you will need to look at the X-am 5600 as the 2500 doesn’t have this option. Neither is it possible to fit a photo ionisation sensor into this unit.

@gt ratings

Quality @@@@@        Ease of use @@@@@       Price @@@@@       Reliability @@@@@

However, please give us your opinions and experiences so that we can pass these on to our readers.

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