Home > Services We Offer > Services We Offer by Product > Ultra Trace Level Organics > 1,4 Dioxane

1,4 Dioxane

An Emerging Chemical of Concern

1,4-Dioxane is an emerging chemical of concern that has been found in groundwater at sites throughout the United States.  It is a volatile compound in the sense that it can easily evaporate from liquid or solid form into the air at room temperature, and is a colorless substance with a mild ether-like smell.  1,4-Dioxane is a synthetic organic compound that has many uses including the following:

  • Chlorinated solvent stabilizer (primarily 1,1,1-trichloroethane)
  • Wetting and dispersing agent in textile industry
  • Manufacturing of cellulose acetate membrane filters (reverse osmosis treatment applications

In addition to the processes listed above, 1,4-Dioxane is used in many other products, including paint strippers, dyes, greases, varnishes and waxes and as an impurity in antifreeze and aircraft deicing fluids and some consumer products.  The physical and chemical properties and behavior of 1,4-Dioxane create challenges for its characterization and treatment. It is highly mobile and has not been shown to readily biodegrade in the environment.

Potential Environmental Impacts of 1,4-Dioxane

1,4-Dioxane can be mobile in the air, water and surrounding soil from the production and use of the chemical.  Once in these matrices, the compound does not readily decompose with sunlight, and has been shown to be soluble and stable in water.  In addition, 1,4-Dioxane does not readily stick to soil particles making the transfer from soil to groundwater or surface water relatively easy.  As such, 1,4-Dioxane is not only mobile in the environment, but also persistent.

How Can TestAmerica Help You?

There are a variety of methods available to meet your analytical and regulatory needs for 1,4-Dioxane testing.  TestAmerica currently offers three methods for the determination of 1,4-Dioxane in drinking water and groundwater:  

  • U.S. EPA Method 522
  • Modified SW-846 8260 SIM 
  • Modified SW-846 8270 SIM

A federal maximum contaminant level (MCL) has not been established for 1,4-Dioxane nor is there a consensus method for the determination of 1,4-Dioxane in water.  However, 1,4-Dioxane is included in the EPA’s third Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 3) for drinking water and several states such as MA, NJ, NH, CA and TX have established their own drinking water and groundwater guidelines.  As such, the selection of the appropriate method must be made in consultation with each regulatory entity.  If you'd like to know if TestAmerica can meet your state's 1,4-Dioxane guideline, please reach out to your TestAmerica Project Manager.