How to Test for Drugs Around the Home

How to test for drugs around the Home and the Workplace

How to test for unknown substances and see if it’s a drug.

In this article, we guide you on how to identify drugs around the home and what to do when you find them. And then how to detect and identify the substance. Then we show you how to test a family member based on your evidence; we hope that the information in this article will help you and give you peace of mind.

Observing the dangers of drug abuse.

We all know that kids like to explore the unknown. Many times peer pressure will make your teen do something they may not otherwise do. Education and guidance should be a parent’s responsibility to guide their teen on the dangers of drug abuse and how to avoid the perils of addiction.

Where do you start as a parent? If you suspect weird or uncommon activity from your teen or notice strange behavior, then it might be a sign that they are using drugs. It’s not unusual, and the situation is getting worse. And it’s not just illicit street drugs that may be the issue here. We have noticed a sharp increase in the use of prescription drugs as well. We talk about teens here, but in reality, it could be anyone in your family.

Where to look for drugs of abuse around the home.

The illustrations above give a clear indication of where your teens may possibly hide drugs. It could be anywhere in the home, but more likely it will be in their own room, a bedroom for example. So start there and explore every possible place.

Where to test for drugs around the home.

Explore the bedroom first.

Bedrooms are the natural place to start your investigation. Teens believe that they can hide them from you, but if you use the illustrations above, it guides you on where to look. Check-in and around the bed, the closet, look in pockets in clothing, closets, computer keyboards, pens, posters, and their personal items.

How do I identify the drugs I find?

New technology, the first of its kind, has made it possible to use a surface drug test that would detect and identify suspicious substances almost anywhere. These test kits offer a breakthrough in technology for testing unknown substances in and around the home. The benefit for parents is they can use them without the need for professional training and their low cost. And, no one needs to know as all you are doing is an initial investigation. If you don’t find signs of drugs around the home, then there are no awkward accusations.

Try a Surface Drug Test Kit.

Even if you don’t find physical evidence, these new surface drug tests can detect and identify trace amounts of drug residue in and on almost anything. They are simple to use, easy to interpret, and 100% safe. They are perfect for concerned parents, school administrators, youth workers, human resources. They were primarily designed for use by military and law enforcement, but for obvious reasons, they are available for you as well.

The test uses advanced wet chemistry technology which makes it safe and user-friendly. And what makes it so good is it produces conclusive proof of the drug found. The illustration above was sent to us by a customer who positively identified Cocaine with the COCO test.

How to test for drugs around the home.

Parents like the fact that they can detect and identify drugs found around the home then test the family in the privacy of their own home. Before this, it was difficult to establish any sign of drug use other than finding paraphernalia or possibly baggies containing unknown drugs and taking them to a laboratory for analysis.  But now, if you find a baggie, pipe, or drug paraphernalia, it’s possible with some accuracy to know what the drug was. Of course, that’s not the whole story.

Is a family member using drugs?

It’s natural for you to trust your family. But, we all know the facts about drug abuse. Many of us have experimented mainly to experience the effects. We know peer pressure is intense, and the temptations are real. Even the best of kids can make poor choices when it comes to experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Testing a family member at home is not as difficult as you think. Testing for drugs with their urine is the best and easiest way to get a reliable answer to one of the most challenging questions facing parents today.

After you test for drugs around the home test your family.

Here is our advice for testing family members. This advice works if you stick to it, the outcome is guaranteed and favorable:

  • Never, ever give notice or warning that you are about to test family members. It’s best to check them first thing in the morning as they wake up.  Escort them directly to the bathroom. Explain to them what you are doing and why.
  • Their first urination of the day is best, as it’s typically the most concentrated. It’s the best for detecting drugs they may have used.
  • Always supervise the collection of urine from start to finish, and stay in the bathrooms while they urinate.
  • Have them hand you the urine-filled cup immediately after collection.  Check the temperature; it should be between 93 to 96º F. The exterior of the cup will feel warm to the touch.
  • Once you have obtained the urine sample, it’s now time to perform the test. Never leave the sample unattended until you have completed the test and satisfied the result; This is important because you may need to send the sample to a lab for confirmatory testing.
  • Presumed positive samples should be packaged and sealed with tape to overt any tampering. (See below on how to interpret the test.)
  • It is not necessary to send a negative sample to a lab for testing.

Conclusion: Drug Test Kits are only as accurate as of the urine sample being tested. Keep in mind that urine samples can easily be compromised or adulterated, closely supervise the entire testing process.

Here are examples of how urine samples can be tampered with:

  • Everyday cleaning products and household liquids such as toilet-bowl cleaners, bleach, floor or tile cleaners, glue, and soaps) can be used as adulterants. Adulterants can also be placed on fingertips and hands and rubbed inside the test cup before sample collection. Make sure they wash their hands before urine collection.
  • Be particularly aware of whether they are concealing small bottles such as eye-drops or ear-drop. They’re easy to hide and can be used to hold many kinds of adulterants. (These may cause the test to fail).
  • Be aware that if your teen dilutes their sample with water from the toilet bowl, you may want to add food coloring to the bowl. It may even be necessary to shut off the water to the toilet and sinks before testing. Abusers are not stupid, and they know all the tricks to get a clean test.
  • To be confident that there is no funny business going on, use an adulterant test. These tests will give you a clear idea of how good their sample is before testing. If their specimen has been adulterated, ask them to provide a new sample.

Specimen analysis with an Adulterant test.

This diagram above illustrates what to expect when checking for adulterants. Parents should tell their teens why they are checking their teen’s urine sample. Tell them you are checking for signs of contamination before the drug test. The process, once again, is simple. Dip a new specimen strip into the newly collected urine for a few seconds, gently remove any excess urine from the test strips and compare the colors against the chart. If you are satisfied with the sample, proceed with the urine drug test. If you suspect adulteration, ask them to provide a fresh sample.

What is a urine drug test and how do I interpret it?

All urine drug tests used at home or the workplace use a Thin Layer Chromatography process. You will notice that the strips that protrude from the test card are thin and about 3/16″ wide; these are the panels. Each panel absorbs urine by capillary action and migrates along to the test or reagent area.  It takes just a few minutes for this to happen. A drug test cup uses the same method; the difference is the strips or panels are inside the cup.

The test area is the window where the result appears. This is where you see pinkish red lines develop as the test completes. (See the illustration below.)

  • The absorbent material of each test strip allows the migration of urine.
  • The urine sample reaches in the test window and encounters the unique formulation of molecules that interacts with drug-specific antibodies. These antibodies only react to metabolites for the specific drug.
  • If the urine sample does not contain the specific drug metabolites, then these unique molecules react with the antibodies to produce a pinkish-red color line.
  • When the line appears as this pinkish-red color, the result is Negative for that drug.
  • If the urine sample does contain the specific drug metabolites, then the molecules do not react with the reagent, and no line appears.
  • If there is a reaction, it generally indicates a Presumptive Positive for that drug.
  • The analysis is complete when the urine sample reaches the Control area at the top of the test window, where a reagent makes the molecules turn a pinkish-red color to indicate that the test worked properly.

All rapid drug test kits are considered a “screening test.” A screening test is a preliminary test that gives a clear indication of a presumed positive or negative. We recommend all Presumptive Positive Results are sent to the laboratory for confirmatory testing. The preferred method for this is called gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS).  It is considered the gold standard in laboratory testing for urine samples.


In conclusion, a test for drugs around the home gives you a clearer understanding of what is required to help eradicate abuse for a drug-free home. Investigate everywhere, check for hiding places where drugs may be concealed. Test suspect surfaces and paraphernalia for drugs of abuse and finally, test your family as described. Advise them about the perils of abusing drugs and help to steer them in a new direction. They know you now have the upper hand and if there is a suspicion in the future, you have the tools to deal with the problem. Drugs, drug paraphernalia, and drug abuse can be eradicated if you follow our advice and use the tools we recommend.