3-17. MAINTENANCE OF DENTAL EQUIPMENT
a. General. Maintenance of dental equipment is very important. Costly repairs
can be avoided by following the proper maintenance guidelines established for dental
equipment. The manufacturer's instructions are usually the best source of maintenance
information because equipment will vary from clinic to clinic or even within a given clinic.
b. Operating Chair. Daily cleaning is necessary for efficient chair operation and
clinic cleanliness. These surfaces should also be cleaned with a damp cloth. An
excessive amount of water should not be used because it could damage the electrical
systems. Inaccessible areas may be cleaned by using the air syringe from the dental unit.
Painted and chrome-plated surfaces and leather upholstery should be wiped daily with a
soft, dry cloth. The dental specialist should never attempt major repairs on dental chairs.
Lubrication and maintenance are normally performed by medical maintenance personnel.
c. Operating Light. Cleaning of the operating light consists of wiping the
extension area with a damp paper towel and dusting the reflector with a soft cloth. Since
the reflectors of dental operating lights may have special coatings, clean reflectors
according to manufacturer's instructions. To replace a burned-out bulb, allow the bulb to
cool for two minutes. Handle the new bulb with a dry cloth. The oil from your fingers could
create a hotspot on the bulb, causing it to expand or explode.
d. Operating Unit. At first glance, the operating unit (see figure 3-2) seems rather
complex. Care and cleaning of the operating unit should be done on a daily basis. Repair
of the operating unit should be left to medical maintenance personnel since it involves
many delicate parts.
e. Handpieces. The overall care, sterilization, and lubrication of the dental
handpieces are the responsibility of the dental specialist. Listing specific procedures for
the care of this equipment is impractical due to the variety and nonstandardization of
handpieces in the Army Dental Care System. However, daily maintenance is essential and
the dental specialist should follow the manufacturer's instructions.