This article will discuss the most common type of drug test, the “Dip Test”. Dip drug tests come in 1 to 12 panel test configurations. A one panel test will test for one drug at a time, a two panel tests for 2 drugs at a time, etc.
Most dip tests come individually packaged in foil pouch (one test per pouch).
1. Allow the test panel and urine specimen to equilibrate to room temperature
(15-30°C) prior to testing.
Bring the pouch to room temperature before opening it. Remove the test panel from the sealed pouch and use it as soon as possible.
2. Take off the cap outside of the test end. With arrow(s) pointing toward the urine specimen, immerse the test panel vertically in the urine specimen for at least 10-15 seconds. Do not pass the arrows on the test panel when immersing the
panel. The same procedure is followed for a multi-panel test card.
3. Place the test panel on a non-absorbent flat surface, start the timer and wait for the colored line(s) to appear. The results should be read at 5 minutes. Do not interpret results after 10 minutes.
Please note: dip test assays provide only a preliminary analytical test result.
A more specific alternative chemical method must be used in order to obtain a
confirmed analytical result. Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) has been established as the preferred confirmatory method by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Clinical consideration and professional judgment should be applied to any drug of abuse test result, particularly when preliminary positive results are indicated.
INTERPRETATION OF RESULTS
NEGATIVE:* Two lines appear. One colored line should be in the control region
(C), and another apparent colored or a faded color line adjacent should be in
the test region (T). This negative result indicates that the drug concentration
is below the detectable level.
NOTE: The shade of the test line region (T) will vary, but it should be
considered negative whenever there is even a faint colored line.
POSITIVE: One colored line appears in the control region (C). No line appears in the test region (T). This positive result indicates that the drug concentration is above the detectable level.
INVALID: Control line fails to appear. Insufficient specimen volume or incorrect
procedural techniques are the most likely reasons for control line failure.
Review the procedure and repeat the test using a new test panel. If the problem
persists, discontinue using the lot immediately and contact your local
For more information on how to use drug tests visit the website:
See also, saliva drug test instructions