Autoclaving Better Than Boiling

Boiling has been traditionally used for sterilisation. While boiling is extremely effective at sterilising things, it has certain limitations and this is why using a dental autoclave is the preferred sterilisation technique in laboratory and clinical settings.

Is Autoclaving Better Than Boiling?

Simply put, autoclaving is a more effective and more efficient method of sterilisation compared to boiling. There are certain microorganisms that can’t be killed by boiling or require a much longer time to be completely killed through boiling. Before diving into what makes autoclaving better than boiling, let’s first understand what is autoclaving and how it works.

What Is an Autoclave?

An autoclave is also known as a steam steriliser. Effectively, it works as a pressure cooker where steam at high temperature sterilises objects inside the sterilising chamber. Different types of autoclaves are available in the market but the basic principle remains the same in all types.

During autoclaving, the instruments to be sterilised are placed within the sterilisation chamber. Various parameters are set as per the requirements for the media being sterilised. The most important settings include temperature, duration, and steam performance. 

Autoclaving happens in 3 different stages:

  • Conditioning – In this stage, all the air is removed from the sterilisation chamber and steam is introduced into the pressure compartment.
  • Exposure – In this stage, the drainage line is shut off after all the air has been expelled from the chamber and more steam is released into the pressure compartment. Steam is continuously released till it achieves the pre-set internal pressure and temperature.
  • Exhaust – In this stage, the drain is released and all the steam inside the pressure chamber is expelled. After this, the materials inside the chamber are allowed to dry.
Autoclaving Better Than Boiling

Advantages of Autoclaving over Boiling

Autoclaving is much more efficient and practical for sterilisation compared to boiling. Here is a list of some of the major advantages of autoclaving:

Better Effectiveness

It is much more effective as higher temperatures can be achieved through this process. Water boils at 100 degrees C whereas an autoclave acts as a pressure cooker. In this pressurised chamber, the temperature of the steam can reach from 121 degrees C to more than 130 degrees C. The temperature inside the autoclave is around 20 degrees C higher than what can be achieved through boiling which makes it much more effective at killing all kinds of microorganisms including those microorganisms that are resistant to boiling temperature.

Suitable for All Shapes and Sizes

An autoclave uses steam for sterilisation which is capable of reaching all the nooks and crannies of all kinds of instruments. Boiling is not really suitable for all kinds of instruments.

Saves time

An autoclave is much more effective and faster at killing bacteria compared to boiling. In fact, it is also better than dry heat. In autoclaving, pressurised steam is capable of killing almost all the microorganisms when steam at 134 degrees C hits the instruments for more than 5 minutes. At this temperature, the microbial proteins get denatured leading to their destruction. On the other hand, boiling may not be able to kill all such microorganisms due to never achieving temperatures higher than 100 degrees C.


Autoclaves are reliable and have been used for decades as a reliable form of sterilisation. They can be used for sterilising hollows, liquids, solids as well as all other kinds of objects. Autoclaves are reliably used in laboratories, hospitals as well as tattoo parlours, and beauty salons due to their reliability.


Overall, autoclaving has been established as a much more effective sterilisation technique that is capable of killing all kinds of microorganisms. It is much more effective due to it being able to achieve much higher temperatures capable of killing even boiling-resistant microbes. It has been used as an effective method of sterilization for decades. Also, it can be used to sterilise instruments of all shapes and sizes and is widely used in a variety of industries for reliable sterilisation.

If you are searching for the best autoclave supplier in Australia, then look no further than Dental Equipment Services. We offer the best dental equipment in Australia for your dental practice. Our experienced and friendly staff will help you find the right equipment – whatever your needs might be. Contact us today to learn more about autoclaves and other technologies we offer. Our representatives will answer any questions you may have and help supply all your dental equipment needs!

For all your autoclave and any other dental supply requirements, please call us today on 1300 144 975 or leave an enquiry.

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