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PFC Testing in Water

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Eurofins Eaton Analytical's PFC Testing Capabilities

What are PFCs?

In May of 2016 the USEPA issued final Health Advisories for Perfluorooctanesulfonic Acid (PFOS) and Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA). These two long-chained Perfluorinated Compounds (PFCs), also known as Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) are part of a larger suite of highly soluble and environmentally persistent compounds prevalent in industrial applications and consumer products.

Industrial Applications Consumer Products
Surfactants for plastics production Stain Repellants on fabrics
Firefighter Foam Nonstick Surfaces on cookware


The new USEPA Health Advisories are set at 0.07 ug/L for either PFOS or PFOA individually or combined. These Health Advisories were set based on lifetime exposure and health effects on all populations, including sensitive populations. Other States have also established their own guidance values for PFOS and/or PFOA and many are being re-evaluated in light of the USEPA Health Advisory.

State PFOS (ug/L) PFOA (ug/L)
Illinois 0.2 0.4
Maine 0.1 0.06
Michigan 0.012 0.42
Minnesota 0.006 0.61
New Jersey   0.04
North Carolina   2
Vermont   0.02


Existing national occurrence data for PFOS, PFOA and other PFCs are based on results from EPA’s Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule 3 (UCMR3) which was a national data gathering effort of public water systems in 2013-15. The following PFCs were included in the UCMR3 survey:

Analyte
Perfluorooctanesulfonic Acid (PFOS)
Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA)
Perfluoro-n-nonanoic Acid (PFNA)
Perfluoro-1-hexanesulfonic Acid (PFHxS)
Perfluoroheptanoic Acid (PFHpA)
Perfluoro-1-butanesulfonic Acid (PFBS)

Data from the UCMR3 indicates that more than 60 public water supplies had entry point samples exceeding the Health Advisories for PFOS and/or PFOA. 

With the Health Advisory issuance, USEPA is asking the States to follow up with vulnerable water systems to conduct confirmation monitoring (based on their UCMR3 data) and/or take steps to minimize exposure, which may include suspension of the water source and/or implementing treatment (activated carbon, reverse osmosis or blending).

PFC Testing in Water - Our Experience PFC Testing in Water - Analytical Method