Difference Between Balance and Scale

Balance vs Scale

Balance and scale are important tools used for measurement. But what is the difference between balance and scale? When a scale is used to measure the weight of an object, it makes use of compression. On the other hand balance is used to measure the mass of different objects. A balance compares the mass, or the amount of matter present in different objects.

Balance

You must have seen vegetable vendors using a balance to sell vegetables and fruits. They keep known amount of mass on one side of the balance and then place vegetable or fruits on the other side of the balance to give the customer desired quantity of items. A balance has a lever with a fulcrum with plates on both ends tied with strings to the lever. Balance has been in use since time immemorial to compare the masses of two objects. The effect of gravity is nullified as objects on both the plates are experiencing the same gravitational pull of earth. It is an accurate means to compare the masses of different objects.

Scale

The best example of a scale is the weighing scale that you must have seen in your doctor’s clinic. He makes patients stand in the scale and the scale returns with the result in kilograms. This scale makes use of a spring that compresses when a person stands on the weighing scale and the indicator points to the weight of the person. Today there are electronic scales being used as mechanical scales do not have the capacity to measure heavy weights. Their use has become very widespread and they are commonly used to sell food items to customers. With passage of time, balances are becoming a thing of the past though they are still used by roadside vendors.

Summary

Both scales and balances are important tools of measurement

Scale measures single objects weight using gravity, while balance uses a lever and fulcrum to compare the masses of two different objects.

Balance is more precise than a scale

Scale is more commonly used these days and balance is slowly becoming outdated.