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10 Frequently Asked Questions About the ActivADS Dump Station

Running a successful life science laboratory involves managing the scientific and administrative aspects effectively. But what matters most is prioritizing and ensuring the health and safety of everyone working in your lab.

Maintaining health and safety in a laboratory is easier said than done. Training and safety protocols can help mitigate these risks. But when your employees get too comfortable, they are more likely to cause accidents. According to a study by, 25-38% of lab personnel surveyed have been involved in an accident or injury in the lab.

What you need is automation, mainly when you are disposing of bio-waste. Automation removes manual handling (and human error) from the equation. When it comes to dumping and scrapping soiled cages, nothing works better than the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station.

As a lab owner/operator, you may have many questions about this product how it can help you maintain health and safety in a laboratory.

Let’s start with the most obvious question:

1. What is the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station?

The BetterBuilt Activ Automated Dump Station (ADS) is an integral component of the Activ Automation suite. As you can imagine, it is designed to address health and safety in a laboratory or animal research facility.

It uses pneumatics and drives to employ precisely controlled movements to automatically dump and clean soiled rodent cages. The process takes place in an enclosed environment. As a result, the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station effectively minimizes allergen exposure for operators.

2. How does the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station help maintain health and safety in a laboratory?

The complete unit is enclosed to minimize allergen exposure for operators in the vicinity.

However, it is advisable to integrate the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station with an external downdraft dust collector system. This will further reduce the risk of allergen exposure. The unit comes with either a hinged access door or a removable drive section. You can use this door to facilitate troubleshooting or manual operation as needed.

3. What are the benefits of the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station – other than maintaining health and safety in a laboratory?

Besides maintaining health and safety in a laboratory, this automated dump station will also help boost your lab’s productivity. As you may already know, cleaning and sterilizing soiled animal cages is a time-consuming task. Plus, it also needs dedicated staff, maybe more than one personnel, depending on the size of your lab. Naturally, manual cleaning will affect your productivity.

The good news is BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station can help you overcome this challenge. BetterBuilt has already helped a research facility at the University of California San Diego improve its operations significantly. Productivity in UCSD’s washrooms improved by 60%, which has been a game changer.

4. How do you clean and service the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station?

Cleaning the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station isn’t going to be a Herculean task. As mentioned, the dump station comes with either a hinged access door or a removable drive section.

You can use this access to clean and service your station.

The large access panels located on both sides of the lower hopper also aid in maintenance and repair. Regular proactive maintenance will help keep your station functioning at its peak.

5. What about the maintenance and service?

Yes, you do need regular preventative maintenance to ensure continuous operation. You can create and stick to a preventative maintenance program as soon as you buy the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station. 

You can get routine maintenance and troubleshooting services from local factory-trained independent service groups. But that’s not all. All the components of our station are non-proprietary. They are readily available from local suppliers or the factory. In other words, maintaining health and safety in a laboratory just got easier and more cost-effective with our ADS dump station.

6. Is the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station noiseless?

The BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station is not 100% noiseless, but we have taken every care to keep the noise level to a minimum. Our designers have used powered 2” diameter stainless steel rollers on 3” centers with PVC sleeves for noise reduction and cage protection.

These rollers will move the animal cages into the ADS station while keeping the noise level at a minimum. Also, we have used O-rings to interconnect the rollers, further reducing noise and providing increased safety. So, apart from maintaining health and safety in a laboratory, the ADS station also helps maintain lower noise levels, as expected in a life science lab.

7. What modes of operation does the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station have?

Most clients prefer using the automatic mode to save time and boost efficiency. However, you can operate the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station in the manual mode. During manual operation, your operator can manually dump the soiled bedding into the integral dump station.

However, if you have the downdraft dust collection unit and Sure-Flo™ Soiled Bedding Handling system, they will continue to operate as intended. But as you can see, we will always recommend using the ADS station in automated mode to ensure health and safety in a laboratory.

8. Do you have any optional add-ons for the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station?

Yes, we provide different optional add-ons to increase productivity and maintain health and safety in a laboratory. You can use an optional allergen dust collector to avoid exposure to harmful allergens during the dumping. Also, you can use a cantilevered load shuttle tray and docking system combined with the B236 Material Handling Bulk Truck or queue stations to assist in loading cages.

These optional add-ons help streamline your operation and minimize interruptions. Talk to one of our experts to understand which add-ons you need when placing an order.

9. Is full integration possible?

Yes, you can integrate the Activ™ ADS unit with our advanced Activ™ IAS Integrated Automation Solution group of products. You can also use it with our Activ™ View data collection and control system.

With this setup, you can ensure the highest level of productivity, health and safety in a laboratory.

10. What is the cost of the BetterBuilt Activ™ ADS unit?

The cost will vary depending on several factors, such as the size of your dumping operations, location, and shipping costs. As you can see, a stand-alone BetterBuilt Activ™ ADS Unit will cost you less than a fully integrated system.

Moreover, the optional add-ons will increase your upfront costs.

But more importantly, the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station requires minimal maintenance and repair, which you can source locally. In short, investing in this unit can prove to be cost-effective in the long run. Besides, you can’t put a price tag on the health and safety in a laboratory.

Wrap Up

This FAQ-based post should provide you with an overview of how the ActivADS Dump Station system works, how you can upgrade it, and how it can help you maintain health and safety in a laboratory. The question is, when do you plan to make it a part of your life science lab?

Since 1950, BetterBuilt has served the scientific community across North America. Our cutting-edge solutions, like the BetterBuilt ActivADS Dump Station, can make your lab a healthy and safe place to work.

Contact us today to place your order or know more about our products.


BetterBuilt is one of the top manufacturers of vivarium washers such as tunnel washers, cage and rack washers, and cage and bottle washers for life sciences, laboratories, and the healthcare industry. We have a strong reputation for quality, durability, and trust within the scientific community over the years.