Dental Sensor Repair: What You Need to Know

There’s a big range in the cost of dental sensor brands.  I personally have chosen to use more moderately priced sensors for my practice for a variety of reasons.

One consideration that you might not think about at purchase time  is if a sensor breaks do I repair it or replace it.  You may feel differently about that decision if you purchase a premium priced sensor like Dexis Titanium that costs $8 to $10K versus a more value priced sensor like I’ve chosen.

Here's a pretty interesting article on the whole subject of repairing or replacing a broken sensor.

Here are two other blog posts on the same subject that may interest you.

 Even sensors that cost twice what other sensors cost do not offer twice the life of their less expensive counterparts. What is the expected life of this technology? I have customers that have had their original sensors for 10+ years. I also have customers who have experienced failures inside of two years. In general, a five-year life expectancy is fairly common with most sensors. Dilligent handling and care is an important assumption in this five-year equation; however, even with proper care, sensors may still fail prior to their life expectancy being realized. Often times sensors will fail intermittently and create a lot of staff frustration as they try and determine the cause of the failure.

Dexis Warranty – (Contact Your Sales Rep)
Well I personally know what their warranty is; they don’t have one. Dexis requires you to pay roughly $2,000 a year to be a part of their sensors support plan. This means they must not expect their sensors to last at all.

You can talk to several companies that manufactur CCD and CMOS chips and find out that you could have your very own sensor with drivers manufactured by them for about $1,800 (if you have enough cash to buy 600 sensors-Which maybe 300 dentists should just get together and have their own sensor made for them. Then resell it to other dentists as well for about $4,000 grand a sensor and make a nice profit.)

The warranty information was so terrible I moved on to physical makeup.

Physical Inspection –
Physically the sensor is similar in design to the XDR. Plastic composite sensor casing, single data cord coming directly from the sensor to a USB A plug. The sensor is powered across the USB bus and seems to have only one primary source of failure. The USB A plug. This connector is rated for 1,500 connections.  (USB life cycle resource)

If you move this sensor 8 times a day from room to room as you have patients who need xrays then your sensor connector will last for 187 work days. I see this as a huge problem. There is a simple solution which would be to use a very short A to A extender that you plug into your sensor once and use it to unplug and replug into your usb powered hub. Then replace the extension when it fails. This is my idea though and many Dexis sensors are being sold and the doctors are not hearing anything about needed to protect the connector.