Formaldehyde and Glutaraldehyde



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We use the NIOSH methods 2016 and 2532 to measure formaldehyde and glutaraldehyde together using either a diffusive sampler badge or sampling tubes. Just clip a sampler to your collar or place it in a central location to use as an area monitor. This method provides the most accurate measures of aldehydes available today, with a few caveats. The samplers (yes, all samplers) are sensitive to heat, so we suggest that these be stored, and shipped refrigerated, especially during the summertime. Decomposition of the media can produce a background signal that’s difficult to account for and thus can result in false positives. This is a problem that we’re working on, so stay tuned. For now, just be aware of the problem and avoid leaving the samplers in hot environments (like autos in the summer) and try to ship the samples to the lab with a cold pack during the warm season. Our diffusive badge samplers have a media blank built in for use in measuring this decomposition, so we can say if the sampler decomposed from the analysis data.

Remember that formalin contains 10-15% methanol, which is also regulated by OSHA much like formaldehyde. Please see our alcohols page to measure your methanol exposure – the standard alcohols badge should work well for you.

Interestingly, OSHA recommends the measurement of formaldehyde using OSHA 52, the hydroxymethyl piperidine method. This Is the same method that we recommend for the measurement of acrolein. We’ll gladly analyze your sample tubes if you are interested in measurement using this method but remember that it requires the use of the personal sampling pump. It would be interesting to compare NIOSH 2016 to OSHA 52 in a real work environment. Please contact us if you’re interested in this study.

Product Specifications

Chemical Detected CAS number Single Chemical or Multiplex SKC Diffusive Sampler SKC Tube Sampler Reference Method Reporting Limit (MRL) 8 h ppm Reporting Limit (MRL) 15 min ppm
Formaldehyde 50-00-0 Single or Multiplex UME-100 226-119 NIOSH 2018 0.006 0.19
Glutaraldehyde 111-30-8 Single or Multiplex UME-100 226-119 NIOSH 2532 0.003 0.10
o-Phthalaldehyde 643-79-8 Single or Multiplex UME-100 226-119 NIOSH 2018M 0.003 0.1
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