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Volatiles

Volatile Organic Compounds - More Than Just a Name!

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are a class of chemical compounds that easily evaporate from liquid or solid form into the air at room temperature. VOCs can be naturally occurring in the environment, such as methane or isoprene, or human-made compounds like benzene, acetone or methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE). Common household sources of VOCs include paints, glues, personal care products and cleaning supplies.

Federal and state agencies have developed regulatory compliance levels for VOCs under the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, within NPDES permits and in the Safe Drinking Water Act.  

TestAmerica utilizes Gas Chromatography (GC) and Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS) technology and purge and trap methodologies to determine VOC concentrations in samples.  Our highly trained chemists have extensive experience working with a variety of sample matrices including ground water, surface water, waste water, drinking water, soil, air, waste, sediments and tissues.  Our laboratories maintain certifications across all states, ensuring we can meet your regulatory needs no matter where your samples were taken.  Common volatile methods include 8260, 8260_SIM, 624, 524 and TO-15.  

Soil Sampling Considerations

Several states have enacted legislation requiring the use of prep method EPA 5035 in conjunction with soil samples being analyzed for volatiles method 8260.  This closed-system purge-and-trap method ensures minimal loss of volatile compounds, similar to water analyses.  Method 5035 requires the use of a specialized kit, such as the one shown in the image to the right which can be purchased from TestAmerica with your bottle kit.  All of the materials required for testing are included in the kit for your convenience.  For more information on these sampling devices, please contact your Project Manager. 

For more information on TestAmerica’s VOC offerings, please click on the following links to view our capabilities, which can be further filtered by lab, method, program or technique, and our certifications.