Metal Cutting Fluid Bacteria & pH Test Kit

  • Metal Cutting Fluid Test Kit
  • Metal Cutting Fluid Bacteria & pH Test Kit
  • metal cutting kit sump lathes
  • Metal cutting kit test
  • Metal Cutting Fluid Bacteria & pH Test Kit
Metal Cutting Fluid Test Kit
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Include a Refractometer?: Want to upgrade your incubator?: Include a Temperature Sensor?:

Correctly check your metal cutting / metalworking fluids for bacteria and pH levels to comply with HSE guidelines. This metal cutting test kit includes an easy to follow instruction manual and log book allowing you to keep a record for your next inspection.

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About Our metal cutting fluid bacteria & ph test kit

This metal cutting test kit is for testing the bacteria, yeasts, moulds (fungi) and pH levels of metal cutting fluids to comply with HSE MW5 ('Managing sumps and bacterial contamination') Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations:  (

The Metal Cutting fluid test kit includes:

  • 1 x Full colour, 18 page instruction manual with step by step instructions (including photos) and record sheets.
  • 1 x pre-calibrated MX2 Dipslide Incubator for MCBTM2 dipslides (1 -2 dipslide capacity)
  • 2 x boxes of Metal Cutting Fluid dipslides - MCBTM2 (bacteria, yeasts and moulds test), 20 dipslides in total.
  • 1 x box of Premium pH Indicator strips (pH 6.5 - 10.0)
  • 1 x Refractometer 0–32% Brix. This is an optional item (as you may already have one of these). A refractometer can be used to test the concentration of industrial / metal cutting fluids. Testing the concentration is important as having a high or low concentration can contribute to adverse health effects, ineffective lubrication, machine breakages and bacterial contamination. Please choose from the dropdown if you wish to include this item.
  • 1 x Temperature Sensor - In accordance with HSE MW5 regulation, you are now required to monitor the temperature of your MWF weekly. Please choose from the dropdown if you wish to include this item.

How to use the metal cutting fluid test kit.

Dip the slide into the metal cutting fluid (MWF).

Dip slide into fluid

Fully submerse the dipslide (so all the agar is covered) into your cutting fluid sample for 10 seconds. After which, remove the slide and allow the fluid to drain off before returning it to the tube.

Place the dipslide into the incubator.

Place dipslide into the incubator

Place the dipslide into your incubator and inbucate for 24-120 hours (see instruction sheet for exact times).

Compare the dipslide results with the comparison chart.

Review Results

Remove the dip slide from the incubator and compare the results with the comparison chart provided.

Testing the pH of metal cutting fluid can indicate whether levels are corrosive. Low pH levels can be caused by the presence of bacteria. This is why using dipslides and pH strips together gives a fuller indication of the 'health' and quality of your cutting fluid.
Ideally, you do not want your cutting fluid to have a lower pH than approx 8.5 as any fluid that is too acidic will corrode metals. However, you don't want a pH level that is too high as it can pose a risk to health (skin irritation etc).

When you carefully dip the indicator strip into fluid, the strip will change colour in accordance with its pH level. These indicator strips are colour fixed and non-bleeding so results should be clear and accurate.

Each box of pH indicator strips contain 100 strips. A colour indicator chart is also included.

The Metal Cutting Fluid dipslides (MCBTM2) dipslides test the cutting fluid for bacteria and yeasts / moulds. Regular microbiological testing of metal cutting fluids is very important. High levels of bacterial contamination will degrade the quality of the fluid and will become a health risk. Contamination can also cause the pH level to lower to acidic levels.

There are 2 boxes of dipslides in this kit (20 dipslides) . To test your metal cutting fluid using these dipslides, carefully dip the slide within the fluid and immerse fully then replace the slide within its tube. You will then need to incubate the slides and once incubated, compare results with the comparison chart provided to evaluate if contamination is present.

The GNAT incubator will incubate 1 - 2 dipslides. It is ready to use after an initial 15-20 minute stabilisation period. The incubator is pre-set at 30 degrees Celcius.

This kit will provide everything you need to effectively test the microbiology and pH of your metal cutting fluids.

Differences between our metal fluid test kits

  Metal Cutting Dipslides
Standard Kit
Premium Kit

Replacement slides for kits MCF-B-PH-K and PMCF-B-PH-K.

Number of dipslides included (aka number of tests)

10 20 20

Includes an incubator (required for the tests)

Number of machines that can be tested at the same time.
(more machines can be tested if the incubator is upgraded when ordering)

1-2 Machines 2-8 Machines

Can test fluid pH Level (to comply with MW5 HSE Regulations)

pH Testing Method

pH Strips Digital Meter

Can test fluid temperature (to comply with MW5 HSE Regulations)

(if optional temperature sensor is selected)
Digital Meter

Can test fluid concentration (to comply with MW5 HSE Regulations)

(if optional Refractometer sensor is selected)

(if optional Refractometer is selected)

Includes full user manual


Includes Recording chart


Includes a comparison sheet to compare results.

Reading the results

Nutrient Side

Level of infection in liquids







Approx colonies per agar






600+ advice

Good control. Bacteria are being maintained at low levels. Regular checks and actions to maintain the fluid quality should continue.

Reasonable control. Review and take action to check the quality of the metalworking fluid and adjust fluid parameters to those recommended by the supplier. If bacterial growth continues despite these adjustments, add biocide at the dose recommended by your supplier.

Poor control. Immediate action should be taken in line with the risk assessment. Normally draining and cleaning should take place

Example Image

102.jpg 103.jpg 104.jpg 105.jpg 106.jpg 107.jpg

Level of infection on surfaces

0.4 2.5 12 40 100 250

Malt Extract Side

Level of yeasts in liquids







Approx yeasts colonies per agar







Example Image

Yeast dipslide growth Yeast dipslide growth Yeast dipslide growth Yeast dipslide growth Yeast dipslide growth Yeast dipslide growth

Level of yeasts on surfaces







Malt Extract Side

Level of moulds




Example Image

Light mould growth on slide Medium mould growth on slide heavy mould growth on slide

You can find our Premium Metal Cutting Fluid Kit here: Premium Metal Cutting Fluid Bacteria & pH Tester Kit

Related UK & International Guidelines / Regulations

MW5 ('Managing sumps and bacterial contamination') -

Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations as regulated by HSE 

ASTM E2693 - 

Standard Practice for Prevention of Dermatitis in the Wet Metal Removal Fluid Environment

ASTM E2657 - 

Standard Practice for Determination of Endotoxin Concentrations in Water-Miscible Metalworking Fluids

ASTM E2275 -  

Standard Practice for Evaluating Water-Miscible Metalworking Fluid Bioresistance and Antimicrobial Pesticide Performance

ASTM E2169 -  

Standard Practice for Selecting Antimicrobial Pesticides for Use in Water-Miscible Metalworking Fluids

Customer Questions


Is this metal cutting kit for soluble cutting oil and neat cutting oil?


The dipslides in this kit will work with all cutting fluids and will show the bacteria + Yeasts and mould colony counts.


What are the acceptable levels and what do I do if it is over?


For the UK, HSE recommend 10/2 and under (see "reading the results" above). If your bacteria level is over this, you will need to review control measures and follow manufacturer's guidelines on cleaning your liquid/machinery.


How often do you need to carry out these tests? What is the difference between the BTM2 dip slides and the metal cutting fluid dip slides?


The HSE state the following:
For many systems and sumps, weekly checks (such as dipslides) will be required. The risk assessment may vary this period if the continuing control of bacterial contamination can be demonstrated. Checks (such as dipslides) will normally be required at some intervals to check continuing control.
As such, we would recommend following the HSE guidelines.


At what temperature is the incubator set at or can you vary incubation temperature?
Also what do you recommend as a safe disposal method of the incubated dip slide as they could potentially be a biohazard.


Hello, The incubator has a fixed setting at 30 Degrees C by default which is recommended for these dipslides. It can be supplied set to 35 if required but this can not be changed by yourself as the temperature is controlled internally. Used slides should be incinerated, autoclaved or soaked in disinfectant for several hours before disposal. If you have any further questions, please let us know.


Please i need a quotation for 1 metal cutting test kit and an incubator.


Hello, All our prices are listed on our website. If you add your desired items to our website basket, it will calculate the exact shipping cost during the checkout. No payment is needed to view the total cost of the order.


Do your slides work when there is a layer of hydraulic oil on top of coolant?


Hello, This should not affect the the test but if you have any issues, please let us know.


Hi, Do you offer a dip slid that is specific for legionella in soluble cutting oils?


Hello, No, please see our blog post at regarding Legionella testing as this explains why we do not offer a dedicated legionella test and which dipslides to use to test water health.


I have bought your metal cutting fluid kit but I am unsure how long to place the slides in the incubator. Under the photo on your website it states 24 - 120 hours. But I'd have thought the longer you leave the slide incubating the worse the growth would be. Can you please advise.


For the metal cutting dipslides, the two sides of the slide have different incubation times.
The lighter coloured side (nutrient) needs 24-48 hours to incubate for your total count.
The darker brown side (malt extract) needs up to 120 hours to incubate. This will then allow the mould / yeasts to grow.

You can pull the slide out of the incubator at any point to check the results/make notes of how many colonies (e.g. red spots or moulds) are growing. Please note, it is not the size of the colonies that you count but the amount of them. As such, you may find the mould side has 1 colony grow and simply gets larger over the reminaing incubation time. This would still be a 'Light' level. However, if the slide has approx 8+ colonies of mould (even if small) it would be a 'medium' level. You should also have received a comparison chart inside your kit which should have example images to compare to.


How many tests can be performed per metal cutting kit. What is the recommended testing frequency per unit?


The metal cutting test kit includes 20 dipslides. You would need 1 dipslide per test. Regarding test frequency, please see ("For many systems and sumps, weekly checks (such as dipslides) will be required.")


Can you point me in the direction for a kits for a metal cutting band saw coolant regards


For metal cutting coolant testing, we would suggest either our metal cutting kit or our premium metal cutting kit. These can be found at

Additional Details

Product Reference : MCF-B-PH-K

Internal catalogue reference : DS001-74

Product external rating on

4.8 out of 5 based on 19 customer ratings


Download 52 Week Record Sheet  JPG

52 Week Record Sheet JPG
Record 52 weeks worth of bacteria / Yeasts / Moulds and pH tests in JPG format (quicker to open)

Download (1.11MB)
Download Malt Extract Comparison Chart

Malt Extract Comparison Chart
Malt Extract comparison chart in JPG format

Download (1.77MB)
Download 52 Week Record Sheet PDF

52 Week Record Sheet PDF
Record 52 weeks worth of bacteria / Yeasts / Moulds and pH tests in PDF format (may take a while to open fully)

Download (6.7MB)
Download MSDS

MSDS Sheet for Dipslides

Download (436.23KB)
Download MX2 Product Data Sheet

MX2 Product Data Sheet

Download (619.27KB)
Download Nutrient Comparison Chart

Nutrient Comparison Chart
Nutrient comparison chart in JPG format

Download (1.62MB)
Download Metal Cutting Datasheet

Metal Cutting Datasheet
Metal Cutting Dipslide Datasheet (PDF)

Download (1.75MB)

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