Frequently Asked Questions

Product troubleshooting and measurement results -most frequently asked questions-.

Tanita Body Composition Monitors – General Information

All Body Fat Monitors and Body Composition Monitors have different features and functions, and will have their own individual differences in the set up methods. 

User guide is included with the product; however, it is also available on our website at the bottom of the individual product page..

How accurate is a Tanita Body Composition Monitor?

The results obtained through Tanita BIA have been shown to be within +/-5% of Underwater Weighing and DEXA (the "gold" standards of body composition analysis).

Can the scale use imperial measurements?

The sales can be used in either metric or imperial measurements (height and weight) by changing the switch on the underside of the monitor.

Note: Not all the models have a unit switch.

Can I step on with my socks?

No. When the scale reads ZERO, step on WITH BARE FEET. This is necessary to get the electrical impedance reading.

The scales may give accurate readings if the user is wearing thin tights, but they may not work at all, or give inaccurate readings if the tights are thicker.

How do I obtain my body composition readings?

To obtain full body composition readings (depending on the features of the scale), STEP OFF the scale once the measurement has been taken, then press the other buttons, in any order, to obtain the readings. 

Each button will return to body fat and weight result if pressed again. The screen will stay live for one minute from the time the last button was pressed.

To keep the screen live whilst talking, continue to press any button repeatedly, there is no limit on the number of times you can press them.%

Will the electric current harm me?

The current is perfectly safe. You will not feel it at all. However, if you have an implanted medical device such as a pacemaker, the body fat monitor should not be used. 

The unit can be safely used during pregnancy, but will not give an accurate reading.

Are there people for whom the monitor is not appropriate?

People with pacemakers are advised to not use the monitors. Although there are no known health risks, this is a precaution that is advocated by all manufacturers of BIA.

If they use the monitor, they should use it in weight only mode. People with non-electronic medical implants may safely use the monitor, however, any metallic implants in your body could affect the body fat reading.

However, you can still use the monitor to successfully track the relative changes in your body over time. This is because the metal will continue to have the same effect on the reading any time you take a measurement.

The monitor may not be suitable for:
• People with pacemakers.
• Pregnant women.
• People who exceed the weight capacity of the scale.
• People who exceed 75% body fat. 

Can pregnant women use the monitors?

There is no health risk associated with using the body fat monitor during pregnancy.

However, when you are pregnant, the hormones in your body go into overdrive to provide optimum conditions for growing the baby. Fat is stored around the stomach and hip areas to provide warmth and protection for the fetus and is not as evenly distributed around the body as it would be at other times.

As a result, this impacts the readings given by the body fat monitor. The total body water percentage for a person who’s pregnant will also be different than usual. Due to the lack of data to validate what is considered to be healthy levels of body fat and water during pregnancy, the readings may not be as accurate. 

Why are there different readings for male compared with female?

Men are built differently from women. Genetically, men’s bodies are adapted to develop and hold muscle tissue where a woman’s body is designed to hold fat for childbearing.

A man who is exactly the same height and weight as a woman will have more muscle mass and less fat mass than she does. (That is why men need more calories in their diet than women.)

The calculation that the body composition monitor performs is adjusted to take account of this. 

When is the best time to use my body composition monitor?

Your body water levels naturally fluctuate throughout the day and night.

Any significant changes in body water may affect your body composition readings; for example, the body tends to be dehydrated after a night’s sleep so if you take a reading first thing in the morning your weight will be lower and your body fat percentage higher. 

Eating large meals, drinking alcohol, menstruation, illness, exercising, and bathing may also cause variations in your hydration levels.

To get the most reliable reading it is important to use your Body Composition Monitor at a consistent time of day under consistent conditions. We suggest taking a reading 3 hours after rising, exercising, eating, drinking alcohol and taking medication. 

Why are Hydration Levels Important?

The Tanita Body Fat Monitor relies on the body's electrical conductivity, which in turn relies on the body's fluid levels.

Fat tissue is dehydrated, and therefore resists an electrical signal, whilst muscle tissue is relatively hydrated, and therefore conducts an electrical signal.

However factors such as temperature, how much exercise you have done, when you last had a drink, medical conditions (including menstruation), medications, alcohol, caffeine etc. can also affect the hydration level of a person's muscle tissue, which can then affect the body fat reading.

Therefore, Tanita suggests taking a reading 3 hours after rising, exercising, eating, drinking alcohol and taking medication.  

Why do I get different measurements every time I step on and off the monitor?

It is not recommended to step on and off the scale consecutively. To assess your readings, it is recommended that you do your measurements once a month at the same time of the day.

Why is it important to monitor body composition?

Measuring weight alone is not a completely accurate assessment of health or fitness. This is because it does not distinguish the kilos that come from fat and the kilos that come from lean muscle mass. 

It is necessary for everyone to have some body fat, but too much fat will result in obesity (one of Australia’s biggest health issues). 

Who is considered an athlete vs. standard adult?

As a general guideline, we recommend Athlete mode for anyone who carries out more than 12 hours of intensive aerobic exercise a week and who has a resting heartbeat of under 60bpm. (Some people naturally have a low heart rate - it does not apply unless they exercise at that level.) They should also have been exercising at this level for at least 6 months. 

How does age affect body fat percent?

Research has determined that as we age there is a tendency to increase body fat and decrease muscle mass. This is a natural progression unless you increase exercise as you age.

What are the Body Fat ranges for children?

Appropriate body fat ranges for children under eighteen can be found on this chart.

Why do some monitors only go up to 50 for metabolic age and some go up to 99?

The difference in Basal Metabolic Age is due to the scales having varying ranges of age allowance. The BC541 (older model) only has a metabolic age range between age 12-50.

The newer models have a metabolic age range between 12-99.

By calculating the Basal Metabolic Age with a wider range equation, it will result in a higher metabolic age. We should mention that the difference in metabolic age is usually only experienced for those over the age of 50, and hence you may notice that whilst the metabolic age readings for those under the age of 50 is the same or varies very slightly, this is not the case of those over the age of 50.

For all models that have a metabolic age of up to 50 it should be noted that users who receive a metabolic age reading of 50 may have a slower metabolism and therefore may have a metabolic age of over 50. 

My body fat / other readings are not showing, what is wrong?

If your scale is not showing body fat % reading this is because it is unable to complete an electrical circuit.

Possible causes could be:
•There is something between your feet and the electrodes (e.g. socks/shoes).
•There are callouses on feet.
•Your feet are not correctly touching the electrodes.
•The electrical signal is short-circuiting (e.g., damp thighs touching together).
•The electrodes have become detached.
•There is an electrical fault inside the scale. (The last two items cannot be repaired.) 

What models measure intra and extra cellular fluid?

Intra and extra cellular fluid readings are a feature of RD-953 Bluetooth Composition Monitor and RD-545 Bluetooth Segmental Body Composition Monitor.

How do I delete all the user settings?

You can over write the settings but you cannot delete them.

How does the Guest function work?

The guest function is for a one-off use, so that the memory keys do not have to be changed for a guest user.

To use the GUEST function, start with a blank screen, then press the guest button. Use the arrow keys to select the appropriate data and confirm each setting by pressing the “SET” button. 

When this is completed the monitor will scroll through the settings to confirm, and then go to ZERO. Step on as follows to get the readings. Once the readings have cleared from the screen the settings will also be cleared – to re-use the scale it will need to be set up again.

Can geographic location affect the accuracy of the results on scales?

Different locations across the world have varying gravitational pulls. This in turn affects the accuracy the weight reading in scales. Selecting the correct gravity setting on your scale according to your geographical location, you are guaranteed the most accurate weight readings.

Australia by location setting codes:
Use code A5 for Adelaide, Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney
Use code A6 for Brisbane, Perth 

How can you see weight only results?

(Not all body composition monitors offer this feature. Look for the weight only icon).

If you press the weight only button, it will allow you to measure weight, but will not take body composition readings. Use this button to measure items other than people (e.g. luggage).

Also suitable for anyone who cannot use body composition measurements, such as someone with a heart pacemaker. Press the button and wait before stepping on, the LCD will show 8888 whilst it self-calibrates. When it shows 0000 it is ready to step on.

What is the difference between DCI and BMR?

Daily Calorie Intake (DCI) is the sum of calories for basal metabolism, daily activity metabolism (activities including daily household chores) and diet induced thermogenesis (energy used in connection with digestion, absorption, metabolism and other eating activities). It is an estimate of how many calories you can consume within the next 24 hours and maintain your current weight.

Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is the minimum number of calories your body needs at rest to fuel its metabolic activity. In other words, this is the minimum level of energy your body needs when at rest to function effectively, including your respiratory and circulatory organs, neural system, liver, kidneys and other organs. You also burn calories when sleeping.

How do I set up and change my personal data?

Pressing the "SET" button will allow you to program the scale for the first time, and will also allow you to change the settings.

When you press the "SET" button, the LCD will ask you which memory number you wish to program. At this point do not press the actual memory buttons, instead, use the up or down arrow keys or until the LCD shows the number of the memory button you wish to program, then press "SET" button.

You can then continue with the set up routine as described in the instruction manual. 

How do I use my personal memory?

Your scale may have personal memory buttons; in which case, press the memory number you want to use. Or, if it does not have personal memory buttons, press the “Memory” button and then press the arrow keys to select the number of the memory you want to store your results. Press the "SET" button to confirm.

After this the LCD will show the current settings. Wait for the LCD to go to 0000 before stepping on to obtain your body composition measurements.

Which batteries should I use?

Make sure you have not used Duracell Batteries(they are a different shape and sometimes do not make a good contact).

How long do the batteries last?

If the body fat monitor is used 5 times a day, then the batteries should be sufficient to last for a year.

What is the warranty on the scales?

All product that you have purchased in Australia on our online shop or with any authorised retailer has a 5 Year Replacement Warranty. 

Important note: Please make sure you register your product here or send by post your warranty card included with you product packaging. A photocopy or scan of proof of purchase will be essential to validate your product registration if any replacement on warranty is needed. 

I can receive my weight and body fat % but, why I can't get any of the other readings on the Innerscan Body Composition Monitor?

Once you have obtained your weight and body fat% step off of the scale. 

After stepping off of the scale you can press any of the other buttons to see your readings.

The trick is to be off of the scale before pressing the other buttons. 

My readings are very different to the DEXA scan I had done, are these monitors inaccurate?

Tanita monitors are within 5% of the Pencil Beam DEXA scan for accuracy. Please ensure you are comparing your results with a Pencil Beam DEXA scan and not Fan Beam as this will result in a larger variation than the stated 5%. 

Note: Please also ensure you’re meeting the following criteria to ensure you receive accurate results: 
• Make sure the scale is placed on hard flooring (avoid floating floorboards, carpet, thin carpet over concrete, rubber mat).
• Your body is hydrated. Refer to Healthy Range Chart here for hydration levels according to your body type.
• Have bare feet. 
• Have your heels correctly aligned with the electrodes of the unit, given the unit has visible electrodes. It is ok should the toes overhang the measuring platform. 
• It is not recommended to step on and off the scale consecutively. 
• Monitors won't read accurate results if user has a metallic implant e.g. knees or hips replacements, heart pacemaker. 
• Avoid Duracell Batteries, these don't have good contact to operate fully charged device. If you’re still having trouble, please contact one of our Tanita Australia team member, toll free number 1800 545 444 or email us at

Why do I get different readings on one scale to another?

In some instances, there are differences in the models and their algorithms. 

For example, some have a higher metabolic age range than others and some are segmental. 

It is not recommended to compare readings from one monitor to another for this reason. 

Why do I get different measurements every time I step on and off the monitor?

It is not recommended to step on and off the scale consecutively. 

To assess your readings, it is recommended that you do your measurements once a month at the same time of the day. 

Can I get my scales calibrated?

Tanita Australia models are self-calibrating upon being turned on, so therefore no need for calibration. 

However, should you experience any issues Tanita Australia offer a 5 Year Replacement Warranty.

How does Tanita’s body composition monitors work?

Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) is considered one of the most reliable and accessible methods of screening body fat. Tanita patented a revolutionary way of measuring BIA that is faster, easier and less intrusive than traditional means – being the first company to introduce the world to the body fat monitor scale. Electrodes in the foot sensor pads send a low, safe electrical signal through the body and weight is calculated automatically along with up to 10 other readings in seconds.

In conventional BIA, a person is weighed, and their height, age, gender, and weight, or other physical characteristics such as body type, physical activity level, ethnicity are entered in a computer. While the person is lying down, electrodes are attached to various parts of the body and a small electric signal is applied.

BIA measures an individual’s impedance or resistance to the electrical signal as it travels through the water that is found in muscle and fat. The more muscle a person has, the more water their body can hold and the greater the amount of water in a person’s body, the easier it is for the electrical signal to pass through it. The more fat an individual has, the more resistance they have to the electrical signal. 

BIA is safe and a large majority of the population cannot feel the electrical signal at all, however weight only mode should be used for those with pacemakers.

Tanita body composition monitors make it possible to determine a person’s:
Body Water Percentage
Muscle Mass
Physique Rating
Basal Metabolic
RateMetabolic Age
Visceral Fat
Bone Mass
Muscle Quality 

What is the difference between the three levels of activity?

When using certain BCMs (such as the BC-582), you may be asked to select an activity level. 

To ensure you select the appropriate level, please use the guide below:
Level 1: Inactive lifestyle (little or no exercise).
Level 2: Moderately active lifestyle (occasional, low intensity exercise).
Level 3: Adult involved in intense physical activity (athlete)

Can children use Tanita Body Composition Monitors?

Tanita monitors will only provide weight, body fat and hydration for children. The reason that Tanita cannot provide all measurements for children is due to the lack of database and statistics to support the readings. 

Being correlated toe DEXA results with 0.92~0.96 accuracy, Tanita’s BIA technology relies on the statistical data collected from DEXA to provide this validation.  

Why is there an "Athlete Mode"?

The Athlete mode was developed to provide a more accurate reading for athletic body types. Athletic body types are physiologically different than standard adult body types, due to muscle mass and hydration level differences.

Athletes tend to have greater muscle mass and tend to be more dehydrated. These differences would skew the body fat reading high, when taken with the standard Adult mode.Tanita defines "athlete" as a person involved in intense physical activity for approximately 12 hours per week or more.

Those who belong to a sport team or a sport organization with the aim of participation in competition, etc. 

Those who exercise to build up muscles like a bodybuilder.

Those who are professional athletes

Anything that abnormally affects weight / interfere with conductivity?

•severe calluses on the heels or soles of the feet
•dampness of the feet (e.g. after a bath)
•if the skin of the feet is very warm
•if the foot pads on the body fat monitor are dirty this may interfere with conductivity
•medical implants such as a steel plate in the leg, an artificial hip joint, or breast implants will affect the readings although the body fat monitors are still safe to use with these conditions.  

Tanita Equations

Details of your height, gender, body type and age are programmed into the memories (or guest function) before use.

This information, together with an accurate weight reading and your resistance measurement, is processed in a computer chip that uses Tanita’s exclusive equations to calculate your body fat % and body composition.

Some monitors include a special equation that has been developed for “athletes” who do more than 12 hours a week of intense exercise, and who have developed denser, heavier muscles tissue.

The equations in Tanita’s Body Composition Monitors were developed by Tanita’s worldwide medical advisory board. The same equations are found in Tanita’s Professional Body Composition Analysers used by doctors and fitness professionals in hospitals, medical centres and gyms around the world. 

Trouble Shooting: BC-1000

Connecting the scale

When using the scale for the first time after an extended period of time in order for the ANT stick to pick up the scales wireless connection you must connect to the scale. 

To connect the scale, please follow these steps:
1 Ensure the ANT+ is securely plugged into the computer. 
2 Open Healthy Edge Software.
3 Select File.
4 Select Healthy Edge options.
5 Select BC-1000.
6 Select connect.
7 When the green light comes up on the scale stand on the scale with bare feet to activate the connection.8 Please ensure you eject the ANT+ stick properly from your computer prior to unplugging it. Failure to do so can cause the ANT+ to malfunction. 

Note: If the software requires a serial number, you have selected the wrong BC-1000 while completing this step. Please ensure you have select the BC-1000 and not the BC-1000plus.

Stride length

How to calculate stride length?

The stride length is taken as the distance between the toes on one foot and the toes on the other foot. To accurate find your average stride length, walk for 10 steps and then divide the total distance walked by 10.

Example: if you walked 6.6m in 10 steps = 6.6/10 = 0.66m=66cm

I keep receiving error messages whenever I try and use the software. When I close the error messages, the software shuts down.  

Examples of Errors

Error in GetUserName | File Not Found | Error in CreateNewDatabase | Unable to create a new Data File

If you are experiencing any of the errors mentioned above, please follow the steps below:
1  Uninstall any components related to the Healthy Edge Software.
a.Go to start (bottom left)
b.Select Control Panel
c.Select Programs
d.Find Healthy Edge Software and uninstall it.
a.Please download both x64 and x86 files.
b.Install the x86 first, and then try to install the x64.
3  Restart your computer.
4  Install the Healthy Edge Software.
5  The software should now be working.

Sometimes an error message may still appear (this is inevitable). You will know if the software is properly installed if the software stays open after clearing all the error messages. 

Ant+ Driver not installed correctly.

Normally the ANT+ driver should install automatically at the same time as the Healthy Edge Software. 

If this isn’t the case, please follow the steps below:
Click on start (bottom left).
2  Click Add Hardware (or Devices).
3  Follow the prompts to allow your computer to search for the driver.
4  If unsuccessful, please download the ANT+ driver manually here [link to ant+driver].

If you’re still experiencing any issues, please contact one of our Tanita Australia team members at 1800 656 444 or email

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