Supplies, Fees & Assistance

Information regarding sample collection supplies, analysis fees, and technical assistance:

Supplies for Sample Collection:

The WSS Chemistry Laboratory provides the following sample collection and preservation materials by request: Sample Bottles, Chemical Preservatives, EPA Method 1631 Hg sampling kits, Security Seals (for chain of custody), Total Residual Chlorine test strips, pH test strips, and DOC Blank Water.

These general supply items can be ordered by completing a DWR Chemistry Laboratory - Supplies Request Form and emailing it to the appropriate distribution list below: 

Low-level Mercury Sampling Kits:

Sampling kits must be requested using the supplies order form. The Metals analytical group prepares sample containers in a Class 1000 clean room for low-level mercury (Hg) sample collection. Each container is assigned a number for tracking and 5% of the containers are checked for Hg contamination. Each one-station kit includes 1 cooler dedicated to low-level Hg samples, 1 empty 500-mL bottle to receive mercury-free water for the field blank and 1 500-mL bottle for the environmental sample which is filled with mercury-free blank water to be poured into the empty bottle to serve as the field blank. For additional information on Hg sampling kits, refer to the Metals Unit Memorandum, Sampling Kits for Low Level Mercury Analysis by EPA Method 1631. (updated 5/2016)

Cost-per-Analysis Fee Schedule (effective 7/01/2015)

The cost-per-analysis fee schedule relates only to the Water Sciences Section Chemistry Laboratory’s cost recovery fees. This fee structure reflects the characteristics of the different types of analyses performed, the different matrices encountered, the regulations to which they are subject, and the level of effort expended by the Laboratory in producing the data. The primary focus of the Laboratory’s fee setting process and structure is to directly link the fees to be charged to the costs of activities required for sample preparation and handling and the issuance of reports and to recover the full costs of these activities.  

Determinations were based on an estimate of the number of hours laboratory personnel spend on work necessary for processing a sample and generating a report. It should be noted that the posted fees were determined per average load – a single sample generally demands more resources on a per sample basis. Different sample matrices (e.g., water, soil, fish tissue) are charged differential fees in recognition of the relative complexity of these samples and the frequency of laboratory surveillance. The following items were also considered when these estimates were established:

  • Sample collection materials supplied by the WSS Chemistry Laboratory
  • Sample receipt and login activities
  • Reagent preparation
  • Quality control
  • Consumables
  • Man-hours required for all aspects of sample analysis and reporting
  • Instrument maintenance
  • Personnel salaries
  • Building utilities  

Note: For the 2015 fee update, analytical prices from 2011 were adjusted 3% to address inflation. The updated fees have also been entered in the Labworks LIMs.

We hope this information will be useful in your compliance and enforcement activities. You may contact the laboratory with any questions regarding this fee schedule at (919) 733-3908. 

Total Hardness Calculator:

For worksheet to calculate total hardness from calcium and magnesium results, click here

Safety Information:

The Water Sciences Section's Chemistry Laboratory is committed to providing a safe and healthful work environment for its staff, those submitting samples to the laboratories and laboratory visitors. In the daily performance of duties in and with the WSS Chemistry Laboratory, it may be necessary to work with hazardous chemicals and equipment. This may include:

  • Flammable, corrosive, explosive, carcinogenic or toxic chemicals
  • Biological hazards
  • Physical hazards such as high-pressure gas cylinders, temperature extremes or high voltage equipment

The WSS Chemistry Laboratory fully intends to comply with 29 CFR 1910.1450, which is known as the Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories standard and any amendments specific for the State of North Carolina. Every Chemistry Laboratory employee has the responsibility to ensure the policies as set forth in this program are carried out. Those policies can be found in the laboratory Chemical Hygiene Plans.

The safety officer for the WSS Chemistry Laboratory is Chris Johnson (919-733-3908, x224).

Laboratory Chemical Hygiene Plans (CHPs):

Safety Data Sheets for Chemical Preservatives:

A safety data sheet (SDS) is a document containing information regarding the properties of a particular chemical or solution. An SDS is created and periodically updated by the chemical manufacturer and is an important component of laboratory and field sampling safety. An SDS is intended to provide employees and emergency personnel with procedures for handling and working with a chemical or solution in a safe manner. Each SDS includes information such as hazards, protective equipment, first aid, toxicity, health effects, reactivity, storage, disposal, and spill handling procedures. 

The SDS forms below are provided for laboratory and field staff, and should be consulted before working with any of these chemical preservatives.

Sodium Bisulfate(NaHSO4)

Hydrochloric Acid (HCl)

Sodium Thiosulfate (Na2S2O3)

Nitric Acid(HNO3)

Ferrous Ammonium Sulfate (FAS)

Zinc Acetate (Zn(O2CCH3)2)

Sulfuric Acid (H2SO4)

Sodium Hydroxide (NaOH)

Phosphoric Acid (H3PO4)

Lugol's Solution