Air Testing Info

You can perform an air sample yourself using Trace’s Air Check Kit. The kit connects the same way you would to fill a Scuba or SCBA cylinder and takes about 10 – 15 minutes to perform and fill in the paperwork. The sample is then shipped back to Trace labs in Austin, TX which is backed by ISO-17025 accreditation. Return shipping is included in the purchase price. If you ship yourself, you can use any standard shipping method to return the kit without any special requirements. Only a low-pressure sample (less than 21 psi) is captured in the sample bottle even though you may be feeding the cylinder with high pressure air (e.g. 2500 psi). After the sample is analyzed at the lab you will be emailed a certificate detailing the sample specifications as compared the sampling standard noting if it has passed or failed.

Step 1: Choose the air testing standard that is right for you.
If you’re not sure what you should use please send us an email and we can direct you to the best standard for your application. Listed below are some examples.

CGA Grade E (G-7.1, 2018) This standard is used for most Scuba Diving operations in the US.

OCA (IANTD/IAND) This standard is used for Oxygen Compatible Air where the user would be partial pressure blending air with high purity oxygen to create Nitrox or Trimix gas.

NFPA 1989 (2019) (Grade D) This is the most current standard used for Fire Fighting SCBA use.

NFPA 1989 (2019) (Grade E) This is the most current standard used for Fire Fighting SCBA + Scuba use.

Step 2: Order the test kit on the website and a sampling kit will be shipped out.
You can order either a single use test kit or also choose a sampling program of Semi Annual or Quarterly. If ordering one of the programs the kits can be shipped out automatically at the given intervals. For quarterly programs we recommend purchasing the Air Check Test Kit so you can perform samples when needed. We offer this kit at a discount price for quarterly testing programs. After this one time purchase you can sample on demand at any time.

Step 3: Make note of the details of the air compressor you are testing.
After ordering the test kit we will contact you to obtain the compressor information ( Make, Model, Serial # ). We will also verify what company or personal name you would like printed on the certificate. This information is presubmitted to the air lab so once your sample is received back at the lab it moves through the process quickly.

Step 4: Once the kit is received you will perform the air sample.
The kit includes step by step instructions inside the box and there is also an online video below that will show you the sampling process. Although the testing procedure has more steps involved this process maintains a high level of accuracy. The process involves allowing air to flow through the Air Check Testing adaptor to capture air , oil and particulate plus water vapor in three independent collection devices. To ensure accuracy the kit includes a flow meter that allows you to verify that a minimum air volume of 500 liters has passed through. Although you are feeding the sample adaptor with high pressure air the inlet orifice and vent valve allow only a low-pressure air sample inside the sample bottle. At a flow rate of 50 lpm you will run the test for 10 minutes. Due to the low pressure there are no restrictions on shipping the sample kit back by any carrier. ( USPS, UPS, FedEx ) After the sample is completed you will fill out the information form that will be included with the kit. Alternatively you can scan the QR code inside the sampling media box and fill out the info online. Be sure to write the name you would like to appear on the certificate under the section that says “Sampled For”.

Step 5: Mail the kit back and wait for your certificate.
For free 2 week rental kits a prepaid UPS label will be included to ship the sample back. Once the kit is received back at the lab it will process through in 2 – 3 days and you will be emailed a certificate showing the parameters of your sample listed against the chosen standard. If the sample fails for any reason you will be provided with one additional sample kit at no extra charge to resample the compressor after you have made adjustments or repairs as needed. (Free retesting does not apply to CSA or Navsea testing)

Tips for filling out the form.

Use the QR code inside the sample media box to fill out the information form online.

Under the section that says “Sampled For”, insert the name you want to appear on the certificate.
When filling out section #7 “Sample Information” include the flow reading from the flow meter and sample time. You do not need to fill in the section that say “Ambient Bottle Number” unless you are additionally taking an ambient air sample. This is not included in the standard air testing purchase but can be added if required.