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Sample Requirements

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1H2SO4 and HNO3 for hardness preservatives only listed in 40CFR Ch I (7-1-2010 Edition) Table II. HNO3 is the only preservative listed in Manual or the Certification of Laboratories Analyzing Drinking Water
2Free chlorine if present must be removed by appropriate addition of Na2S2O3.
3Need to add drops 2N zinc acetate / 100 mL of sample.
4HCl or H2SO4 can be used in SW846 and 40 CFR methods.
5The pH adjustment is not required if acrolein will not be measured. Samples receiving no pH adjustment must be analyzed within 3
days of sampling.


Multiple Analyses from Same Container:
Above list the sample container, volume, and preservation for single tests. Often more than one test can be taken from the same
container as long as the preservative is the same. Usually 2-4 test can be taken from the same container.

Example for water : TDS,TSS, pH, conductivity, anions, and cations can all be analyzed from a one liter non-preserved bottle;
ammonia and TKN can be analyzed from the same 500ml H2SO4 perserved bottle; and BOD, pH, and TSS can be taken from the
same non-perserved liter container. Tests requiring separate containers are Oil and Grease, TPH, volatiles, semi-volatiles, pesticides
herbicides, PAHs, PCBs, TOC, total metals and TOX.

Example for soil : BTEX, metals, TPH, and semivolatiles can be taken from the same 4oz bottle. Chloride, TPH, BTEX, and
conductivity can be from the same 4oz bottle. TCLP usually takes a separate 4oz bottle. A one quart zip lock plastic bag can be
analyzed for nutrients, metals, moisture, pH, and salts.



No more than 10 subsamples should be composited to avoid dilution of high analytes. Water samples should be composited into a
common container before thoroughly mixing and pouring into sample containers. All containers should be opened and each
containers should be poured 1/4 full, then add another 1/4 to each container and so forth until containers are full. Soil samples should
be composited into a bucket, stainless steel bowl, or plastic bag then clods should be reduced and the sample mixed before placing in
sample containers. Care should be taken to reduce loss of volatiles when they are of concern.


A sample is a true split only when the two subsamples come from the same container. Samples should be split in the same manner
as composites above with the exception that the duplicate water sample containers can be filled at the same time using the 1/4 full at a
time procedure. The order of filling should be reversed for each pass.


P: polyethylene
TLC: Teflon-lined cap
P(A) or G(A): rinsed with 1 + 1 HNO3
G: Glass
TLS: Teflon-lined septum
PTFE: Teflon
G(S): borosilicate glass


Sample Preservation:
Sample preservation should be performed immediately upon sample collection. For composite samples, samples may be preserved
by maintaining the sample at ≤6oC until compositing and sample splitting is completed.

Holding Times:
Holding times listed are the times that samples may be held before analysis and still be considered valid under EPA regulations.
Holding times are measured from the date of sampling

If the dissolved content is to be measured, samples should be filtered on-site immediately before adding preservatives.
These requirements are based on 40CFR136, Table II; SW-846, fourth edition, and Standard Methods online edition .

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