PFAS is a group of synthetic chemicals that were used in manufacturing processes. PFAS contamination is a growing concern for healthcare and environmental organizations because it is so pervasive. In large quantities or over long-term exposure, PFAS contamination can lead to serious health problems. With up to 99% of people in the U.S. being exposed to PFAS chemicals, the potential for health problems is growing.
To prevent these health problems, prevention is the best method. Freshwater Future, an organization that monitors water quality-related problems across the country, advocates for testing as a way of identifying where your PFAS exposure comes from. Many people think that these kinds of tests are unaffordable, but there are options to consider. Here is a look at the cost to test for PFAS.
The costs for testing for PFAS depends on the method that you use to complete the test. Unfortunately, you cannot do a PFAS test at home. The test requires complex lab-level equipment and trained staff members to identify. To do the tests, you will need to send samples to a lab.
There are labs across the country that can do the PFAS tests. If you want to do the tests, then reach out to one of the labs. It will send you a testing kit with instructions. The process is relatively simple. You will just take water samples in the provided containers, store them properly, then return the entire kit to the lab. The testing time varies by the lab, but generally does not take long. However, the cost of the test varies from lab to lab.
Safer Chemicals are a better alternative to PFAS that many places around the world are moving toward. Because of the potential side effects, local, state, and federal governments are spending billions-of-dollars to clean up their waterways. By switching to safe chemicals, these costs can be avoided in the future.
Certified vs. Uncertified Labs
When choosing a lab to do your PFAS tests, it is important to consider the labs’ certifications. PFAS testing is relatively new, and there are few facilities that earned the certification for PFAS testing. However, there are many uncertified labs that can do the tests. Choosing between the two largely depends on what you will do with the results. A reputable lab that is uncertified for PFAS testing can do the tests, but the results cannot be used in a lawsuit. Only certified lab tests can be used as evidence.
If you are experiencing PFAS-related problems and you are considering filing a lawsuit, find a certified lab to do PFAS testing for your house. The results are admissible in court. Many people choose an uncertified lab to do the first round of testing because it is often less expensive. Some uncertified labs charge as little as $75 to test, while certified labs charge $300 – $600. If you have the first round of tests completed by an uncertified lab and need the results for legal action, have the uncertified facility refer you to a certified facility for the second round of tests. This will reduce your costs by choosing the more affordable option first to see if further testing is warranted.
The cost to test for PFAS is also determined by the method used for testing. Currently, there are two recommended methods: EPA Method 533 and EPA Method 537.1. There are a large number of synthetic chemicals that fall into the PFAS category. Combining EPA Method 533 and EPA Method 537.1 can identify 29 of the most common PFAS chemicals. Labs can use both methods or just one of the methods depending on their price point. For the best results, find a certified facility that uses both methods.
Causes of PFAS Contamination
PFAS contamination is often related to inappropriate disposal methods for chemicals and products that have PFAS chemicals in them. PFAS chemicals do not break down in nature, making the disposal process difficult. Plus, this resistance to natural breakdown means that it can build up in water systems over time. This is also how people experience health problems related to PFAS. It builds up in organic tissue and can stay in the human body for up to 10 years.
When to Seek Recourse
When you can identify the source of your exposure and you are having severe medical problems, then you can take legal action against the party responsible. For example, you test your water and it is highly contaminated. You develop cancer and need expensive medical treatments, and you find out that the local manufacturing plant dumps PFAS in the water supply. You may be able to sue that company for exposing you to PFAS, which likely caused your cancer. Before taking any action or addressing the company directly, consult a lawyer to review your case. You want to be sure that you have a credible case before starting any legal proceedings.
Call for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one is experiencing health issues related to PFAS exposure, consult a lawyer to see if you have a case. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to speak with our legal team. We can review your case and walk you through the process of seeking compensation.