What Are The Different Types of Instant Drug Testing Kits?

By William Bierlein

Where Do I Start? Which Type of Instant Drug Testing Kit is Right for Me?

If you are new to the world of drug testing, it can be quite confusing when trying to determine what type of test you will need. Instant on-site drug testing is one of the most simple, quick and effective ways to screen for any major drug of abuse. This short guide should answer any questions you might have about these types of instant drug testing kits!

Different Types of Instant Drug Testing Kits

Urine Dip Cards

Urine dip cards are the most popular instant testing option and are known for being the most cost effective as well. Simply provide a sample, dip the test and read results in 5 minutes or less. Test anywhere from 1 up to 12 major drugs of abuse all on one test.

Dip angle 3

Cost: Cheapest Option

Number of Drugs Tested: 1-12, multiple configurations available

Application: 3-step process – provide sample, saturate test, read results

Results: Under 5 minutes

Accuracy: 99%

Adulterant option? No

CLIA Waived/FDA Approved? Yes

Integrated Urine Cups

Integrated urine drug test cups have the same functionality of urine dip cards with the added benefit of being a single unit – no dipping required! Simply provide the sample into the cup and read the results in 5 minutes or less. Minimum cup sizes start at 5 major drugs of abuse and go up to a total of 14. Cups also have the capability of including adulterants which test the integrity of the urine (i.e adulterants would detect fake urine, for example).

Cup angle 1

Cost: Middle ground (added convenience of no dipping)

Number of Drugs Tested: 5-14, multiple configurations available

Application: 2-step process – provide sample, read results

Results: Under 5 minutes

Accuracy: 99%

Adulterant option? Yes

CLIA Waived/FDA Approved? Yes

Instant Saliva Drug Tests

Instant saliva drug tests, or mouth swab drug tests are newer to the instant drug testing world. Their main benefit is the added security of being able to administer the test in any setting. People will often refuse to provide a urine sample because “they don’t have to go” or, “there is no privacy”. Having saliva tests on hand is ideal for situations like these. They offer the same functionality as the urine options and test anywhere from 5 to 12 major drugs of abuse.

Saliva angle 2 e1513182682641

Cost: Most expensive option (least invasive, perform test in any setting)

Number of Drugs Tested: 5-12, multiple configurations available

Application: 2-step process – provide sample, read results

Results: Under 5 minutes

Accuracy: 99%

Adulterant option? No

CLIA Waived/FDA Approved? No – for forensic use only

Additional Inforamtion to Consider

When researching which type of test would best suit you, you should ask yourself these questions:

  • Which drugs/how many drugs do I need to test for?
    • Instant kits come in all shapes and sizes. You can test for any single drug, or you can test for up to 14 drugs all at once. It is important to specify this need from the beginning so you can “get the most bang-for-your-buck” as pricing will depend on the number of drugs you are testing for. For example, it would be more economical to purchase a 5-panel test that screens for THC, Cocaine, Amphetamines, Methamphetamines and Benzodiazepines rather than purchasing a single test for each drug.
  • How often do I need to perform a test?
    • If you need to perform a test more than once, it would benefit you to purchase in bulk. Pricing hinges heavily on the number of tests ordered and usually drops considerably per test if you buy in boxes at a time (there are generally 25 tests in one box).
  • Do I want to physically watch the person provide a sample?
    • There are two main types of instant testing: Urine and Saliva. If you want to physically watch someone provide a sample, a saliva test would be a great way to administer the test without sacrificing privacy.
  • Do I need a product that includes extra security to combat tampering of samples?
    • If you are worried about possible tampering of samples (i.e. fooling a test with fake urine) you may want to consider using a test that includes adulterants. Adulterants are an additional screening mechanism that tests the integrity of the urine.
  • What is my budget?
    • No matter what your budget, there is an instant test for you. After carefully considering the above options, choose the 2 most important factors and decide from there. The biggest factors that influence pricing are number of units purchased and the type of test.