Frequently Asked Questions

How does laboratory testing work?

Thanks in part to Hollywood depictions of laboratory analyses, it is a common misconception that laboratory instrumentation "scans" a sample and generates data about everything present in the sample. In actuality, a testing laboratory must first know which analytes you wish to look for in order to perform the appropriate test(s) and provide you with data about those analytes. If you need assistance determining which analytes to test for, please view our Schedule of Services or contact us.         


You can request a quote online by filling out our Request a Quote form. If you would prefer to speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable customer service representatives about your specific needs, you can call us at 951-653-3351.  

How do I request a quote for laboratory testing services? 


How do I set up a credit account with Babcock Laboratories?

To open a credit account with Babcock Laboratories, you must fill out and submit our Credit Application form. Additionally, you must provide us with a signed copy of our Terms and Conditions. Our standard terms are net 30 days from the invoice date. A Credit Application is needed for any work that is not paid for in advance.

We also accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover Card, and American Express. If you wish to pay by credit card, you must fill out and submit a Credit Card Authorization form. A signed copy of our Terms and Conditions is required regardless of payment option. 


What are your procedures for new projects?

We are happy to help you set up a new project. If you are a current client, please contact your Project Manager with a list of your requirements. If you are a new or returning client, please contact our Director of Client Services with a list of your requirements.  


Does your laboratory offer Electronic Data Deliverables?

Babcock Laboratories' mission is to safeguard public health and the environment through a family of employee owners who consistently deliver analytical expertise. As such, all Babcock Labs reports are provided in paperless PDF format in an effort to reduce our carbon footprint. Standard and custom Electronic Data Deliverables (EDDs) are also available to meet out clients' specific reporting needs. We have extensive experience generating and uploading EDDs compatible with State and Federal programs, such as the State of California's Write-On Program.    

To keep our operations as "green" as possible, hard copies of reports are only available upon request and are subject to a surcharge fee.    


How much advance notice is needed for bottle order kits?

A minimum of 24 hours advance notice is needed to put together bottle orders and have them shipped to your location. A standard charge of $20.00 per shipment will be assessed. Most bottle orders are shipped via FedEx Ground. Should overnight service be required, additional charges will apply.


What types of bottles do I need?

The bottles that you need depend upon the type of analyses requested. For a complete listing of sample containers, preservation techniques, and holding times click here. To view our bottle order form, click here

For a complete California Title 22 Analysis, the following bottles would be required (click here). If you have specific sampling bottle questions, please contact your Project Manager.


What is your standard turnaround time?

Turnaround time (TAT) for analytical results will vary depending upon the analyte(s), matrix type, and the regulatory requirements for the samples submitted. In general, Babcock Labs provides test results within 10 working days.


What rush turnaround times are available?

Rush turnaround time (Rush TAT) of samples depends upon the degree of sample prep and extraction that is required by the applicable methods. In general, Babcock Labs offers Rush TAT in 24, 48, and 72 hours, as well as 1 week. All Rush TAT capability is dependent upon the current laboratory workload and requires prior laboratory approval. Additionally, surcharges apply for all Rush TAT. 


Which commonly performed analyses have short holding times?

  • pH, chlorine residual: 15 minutes (best if performed on-site) 
  • Dissolved oxygen: 8 hours (if fixed on site) 
  • Hexavalent Chromium: 24 hours
  • BOD, Nitrate, Nitrite, Turbidity, MBAS, Orthophosphate, Settleable Solids: 48 hours
  • Microbiological analyses:
    • Drinking Water: 30 hours
    • Wastewater: 8 hours
    • Source water: 8 hours

How can I locate more information about a particular analyte (Synonyms, Method Numbers, etc)?

We have found the website www.chemindustry.com to be very useful for this task.


Why are reporting limits sometimes elevated in a result?

The reporting limits that can be achieved on actual environmental samples can be influenced by a number of factors such as sample size, final extraction volume, injection volume, dilutions, instrument sensitivity, and matrix interferences. For example, if dilution of the sample is necessary due to matrix interference, the reporting limit must be adjusted to account for the dilution factor used. A ten-fold dilution will result in the reporting limit being elevated by a corresponding factor of ten.


Do you have a question that was not addressed by our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)?