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Weights and Measures

We protect consumers when they buy products sold by weight or volume.

Our division enforces state codes for devices that weigh and measure products. We inspect the devices to make sure they're accurate. We inspect devices like taximeters, gas pumps, home heating oil trucks, and scales.

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We enforce laws related to pricing and delivery. We inspect devices that weigh and measure once every year as required by the law. If we approve a device, we'll attach an approval and security seals. If we don't approve, the business can’t use the device until it’s fixed or replaced.

Business violations

We respond to all complaints about pricing, weight, deliveries, and more. We also do random inspections. If a business violates codes, we may:

  • give them a written warning
  • charge them fines, or
  • file a criminal complaint.

What to watch out for

Electronic scanners aren't foolproof. We make surprise inspections at stores to make sure their prices are right. While we do our part, you should be aware of the following when you're shopping:

Make sure the price is right
  • Keep an eye on the display screen. If you think you've been overcharged, say something. Ask them to fix the price before you pay.
  • Bring a copy of the flyer with you to the counter.
  • Write down sale prices as you shop so you can remember them.
  • Check your receipt before you leave. If there's an issue, bring it up to the store manager.
Make sure the weight is right
  • When you buy products by weight, you're not supposed to pay for the packaging. Most scales automatically deduct the weight of the package.
  • The scale should be facing you so you can see the numbers. If something seems wrong, ask the clerk to weigh the package again.
  • Make sure the scale is set to zero or a minus sign before the clerk weighs your product. If you have questions, don't be afraid to ask for a manger.
If a business won't resolve an issue

You can file a service request through BOS:311, or contact us at:

Weights and Measures
1010 Massachusetts Ave. 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02118
Phone: 617-635-5300, Fax: 617-635-5383
Office hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

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