Chemistry Forums for Students > Inorganic Chemistry Forum

How are lead test swabs/kits made?


In my country, lead testing isn't very popular. I need to test a piece of glazed pottery I just bought. Unfortunately, it will cost me a fortune to import a test kit.

How does one go about making one? I still remember basic chemistry from high school. So don't be afraid to get a bit technical if needed. Thanks a bunch.

Soluble led salts give precipitate of yellow PbI2 after adding iodide salts (KI for example), which is soluble in excess of KI.

Maybe diluted iodine tincture will enough as KI source, but it red color can be problem.

Otherwise is easier to ask for help in some chemical lab.

Do you want to test the glaze or whether lead leaches from the glaze?

To test the glaze itself, you'll have to dissolve it, even if you're using a home test kit. Those kits are usually intended for use with, e.g., drinking water. In a professional lab you'd use an acid digestion, which would be difficult to do safely at home. Then you'd use an ICP-MS or similar equipment. You could use some other analytic tests or kits but they're not as sensitive and may not work at all in highly acidified solutions.


[0] Message Index

Go to full version