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This paper presents the results from a round-robin testing program to evaluate the paint filter test method developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to determine whether a waste contains “free” liquid. Regulations prohibiting disposal of waste containing “free” liquids in landfills were the impetus for developing the test method. Six laboratories performed the paint filter test on four waste samples to determine (1) whether the waste contained “free” liquid and (2) the percent “free” liquid released by the waste. The four waste samples were from two wastes; one waste was mixed with three different amounts of water to provide three waste samples.
The results show a large variance between the laboratories. The large variance is attributed mainly to sample preparation. The participating laboratories noted two other major problems with the test: (1) separation of the mesh from the cardboard filter holder during testing and (2) differences in filter design, which could influence test results.
waste testing, hazardous waste, industrial wastes, waste treatment, liquid waste, solid waste
Hydrogeologist, Empire-Thomsen, Groton, NY