**IMPORTANT** Due to site maintenance, access to Customer Center is unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Alpha Analytical Mobile Menu Icon

Analytical Services Section

PFAS Analysis of Drinking Water by EPA Method 533

Alpha Analytical now offers PFAS analysis of drinking water by EPA METHOD 533: DETERMINATION OF PER- AND POLYFLUOROALKYL SUBSTANCES IN DRINKING WATER BY ISOTOPE DILUTION ANION EXCHANGE SOLID PHASE EXTRACTION AND LIQUID CHROMATOGRAPHY/TANDEM MASS SPECTROMETRY. This new PFAS analytical method was released by EPA in December 2019 and it includes some significant improvements over the existing EPA PFAS drinking water procedure, Method 537.1.

There are two primary procedural differences between the methods. Method 533 incorporates the use of extracted internal standards as part of an isotopic dilution quantification approach whereas Method 537.1 does not. The use of the isotope dilution technique reduces the overall uncertainty associated with the analysis. Method 533 also uses a weak anion exchange (WAX) solid phase extraction (SPE) cartridge instead of the polystyrene divinylbenzene (SDVB) used in Method 537.1. The use of the WAX SPE cartridge in Method 533 allows for additional PFAS compounds to be determined, particularly short chain PFAS not amenable to Method 537.1 analysis.

Method 533 lists 25 PFAS compounds that can be analyzed by the method and Method 537.1 lists 18 PFAS compounds. It should be noted that not all 18 of the Method 537.1 compounds can be determined by Method 533, even though it has a 25 compound list. The Method 533 list contains 14 Method 537.1 compounds, plus 7 additional compounds that are on DoD and other compound lists, as well as 4 totally new PFAS compounds that were previously not on any PFAS analytical list. Therefore, the maximum number of PFAS compounds that drinking water can be analyzed for using EPA compliance methods is 29 by using both Methods 537.1 and 533 to analyze the sample.

Another significant difference between the two methods are the holding times required by each. Method 533 allows for 28 days to extraction and 28 days to analyze whereas Method 537.1 only allows 14 days to extraction and 28 days to analyze. There are different preservatives used as well, ammonium acetate is used for Method 533 and Trisma is used with Method 537.1.

Please see the table below that lists the two EPA drinking water target compounds as well as the Alpha proprietary isotope dilution and Total Oxidizable Precursors (TOP) PFAS target compound lists.





Low Volume Initiative (LVI)

Alpha Analytical recognizes the challenges of conducting routine water sampling in a highly competitive market. Alpha now offers a Low Volume approach to specific extractable analysis. We undertook this initiative in effort to advance it’s technology offerings, reduce sample collection efforts, minimize the use of organic solvents and reduce waste. This technique employs the same methods as before using less sample volume and less analytical reagents. 

Please see the attached Technical Bulletin or contact your sales representative for more information. 




Vapor Intrusion State Table

What do I need to know about Vapor Intrusion Testing in neighboring state?

The matrix is provided to assist in giving a basic understanding for laboratory requirements for air testing to support Vapor Intrusion (VI) programs in New England and Mid-Atlantic States.

State VI guidance are accessible by web search. However, some are much more user friendly than others. Alpha Analytical maintains NELAP accreditation in states who offer certification.

Connecticut and Massachusetts have self-certification programs which requires the laboratory to complete a QA/QC evaluation which is included in the laboratory deliverable. The state reviews laboratory data deliverables in the process of reviewing site reports submissions.

A number of states do not offer state Certification/Accreditation for air methods.  Alpha Analytical is your partner for Air and Vapor Intrusion testing in which ever state your project is located.

New England States ME NH MA VT CT RI

State  Program/Guidance

NELAP Accreditation*   Y N N N N
State Certification (Air)  Y  Y  CAM  Y RCP  N
State Deliverables   N Y N  Y N
Stand-alone VI Guidance / Fact Sheet  Y Y Y Y N N
Specific VI Compound List  Y Y Y N N N
TO-15 SIM Required for VISL   Y Y Y Y Y
Screening Tables   Y Y Y N N N
Laboratory Clearly Defined  Y Y Y N Y N
User Defined   N N N Y Y Y


Mid-Atlantic States NY NJ PA  DE MD DC

State  Program/Guidance

NELAP Accreditation*   Y Y N N N N
State Certification (Air)  ELAP  Y N N N N
State Deliverables   Y Y N N N N
Stand alone VI Guidance / Fact Sheet  Y Y Y Y Y Y
Specific VI Compound List  Y/N Y N N N N
TO-15 SIM Required for VISL   Y N Y Y Y Y
Screening Tables   Y Y Y Y Y Y
Laboratory Clearly Defined Y Y N N N Y
User Defined  Y N Y Y Y Y

 * States without Air certification prefer data reported by a laboratory with NELAP Accreditation for methods reported. 

Recent state guidance updates include: the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) technical guidance document notice dated 01-18-18 (revision 4.1) and corresponding change log can be found on the SRP Guidance Library (www.nj.gov/dep/srp/guidance/).


Contact Alpha Analytical today for all your Vapor Intrusion and Air Testing needs.

To speak to one of our technical experts please fill out the form to your left. 


Per and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Compound List

Alpha Analytical's List of 36 Compounds


Contact Alpha Analytical today for all your Emerging Contaminant needs or if you have any questions.

Call 800-624-9220 or email us at .


Semivolatile Organic Compounds in Air

SVOCs in Air: PAH Analysis (Alkylated PAHs, HPAHs & PAHs in Air)

Alpha offers EPA Method TO-13A analysis for PAHs in air monitoring programs and has extensive experience providing this analysis for conducting fence-line monitoring during site remediation for MGP and other types of sites. When Method TO-13 is used, low recoveries for naphthalene are typical, XAD-2 should be included in the PUFs to reduce losses. If Naphthalene is the risk driver for PAH’s then TO-15 can be considered.

TO-13A can be run with high or modified for low volume mode depending on the data needs. PAHs that are typically reported may be present in particulate & vapor phases. Consideration should be given to the data objectives when setting up the sampling program. Reporting limits are a function of volume collected. High volume samplers typically will collect >300 M3.

In addition to full scan Method TO-13 PAHs, Alpha offers a SIM product to further lower the reporting limits. We have also developed a SVOC (SW-846 8270C Type ) list which includes compounds that maybe of concern where remediation is active.

It is important to use a sorbent media chain of custody form when submitting samples. PUFs are supplied cleaned certified. After sample collection, the sample should be sealed up in the same shipping container, cooled to <4 degrees Celsius and shipped in a cooler.

In New York, the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) has published a MGP marker list.  Alpha Analytical offers both the PAHs & VOCs identified in NYSDOH vapor intrusion guidance. These include:

  • Thiophenes: thiophene, methylthiophene, ethyl thiophene, benzothiophene
  • Alkyl-substituted benzenes: 1,2,3-trimethylbenzene, 1,2,4,5-tetramethylbenzene
  • Aromatics: indane, indene, naphthalene, 1-methylnaphthalene, 2-methylnaphthalene

Contact Alpha Analytical today for your upcoming Air Testing project.

Call 800-624-9220 and speak with one of our technical experts or email us at .



What Our Clients Are Saying

  • “One of my projects required a last minute sampling event, and the Alpha Team…»»


Contact me with more information on this topic: