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3 Common Waste Tests Explained

3 Common Waste Tests Explained

If you have waste materials of unknown identity, there are a variety of tests that can be performed to help identify your waste.

If you have waste materials of unknown identity, there are a variety of tests that can be performed to help identify your waste.  Whether your uncertainty is because of faulty labeling, improper storage, or any number of other factors, it is imperative that you have the necessary tests performed. By law, generators of hazardous waste must know their waste streams. Some of the most common tests follow. 

Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure

The Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP) is a test in which we determine how a substance will leech into the soil of a landfill over time. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the purpose of the TCLP is to “determine the mobility of both organic and inorganic analytes present in liquid, solid, and multiphasic wastes.” Basically, it determines whether the substance poses an environmental threat if it is put in a landfill.

Flash Point (Ignitability)

The flash point test is what will tell you if your waste is ignitable, and if it is ignitable the test will tell you what temperature. The flash point of a substance is the absolute lowest temperature at which the vapors of that substance will ignite, provided that an ignition source is present.

Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)

PCBs consist of chlorine, hydrogen, and carbon atoms. They are man-made organic chemicals. The properties of PCBs are determined by the number of chlorine atoms and their location within a PCB molecule. PCBs were widely used in industrial and commercial construction until being banned in 1979. Some products that were produced before the ban are still present and can include any number of oil-based paints, adhesives and tapes, thermal insulation material, cable insulation, floor finish, and fluorescent light ballasts. A wide variety of methods are employed in PCB testing.


No matter what kind of environmental issue you may have, AEG Environmental can help. We handle every situation with care, dedication, and a commitment to exemplary customer service. When you have an emergency, you can rely on us! Need training? We can handle that too! We train in a wide variety of environmental management areas so that your company can remain compliant with EPA, DOT, and OSHA. Make sure to check out our blog for the latest and greatest in the waste management world! You should also follow us on social media for updates.

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