Proper installation of your gas chromatography column is one of many components to getting great results. We walk through the steps that are necessary for a good installation and give you some tips on how to confirm that. Be sure to check your manual for the installation distance specific to your instrument.
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Hello, and welcome to another Restek Tip. Today, we’ll be covering GC column installation. The first thing we’ll need to do is cool our GC oven and turn off the instrument flow. Then we’ll remove the column from the box and mount it to the rack inside the GC oven. Take the inlet end and slide the column nut and correct ferrule over the column end. Next, we will want to cut the column end to ensure that we are installing a clean section of the column into the inlet.
Using an installation guide, set the column length to the appropriate depth for the inlet. This depth can be found in your instrument manual. Once we have the correct depth set, tighten the column nut to the inlet reducing nut so that the column is set firmly in the inlet. After installing the inlet side of our column, we’re going to run through the same steps for installing the detector end. And again, you can reference your instrument manual to ensure that you are setting the correct installation depth for the detector which you are using. Make sure that there are no severe bends in the column, and that the column is not touching the oven walls.
One trick that I like to use to make sure that I have tightened the column nut enough is to give the column ends a slight pull. If the column end slides out, then reinstall it and tighten the column nut a little more. But be sure to not overtighten the column nut, because this could lead to other issues. After installation check for leaks using an electronic leak detector. Another method for testing the installation is by injecting a small amount of solvent into the system. If the solvent peak tails excessively, then you should double check your installation. But if the solvent peak is sharp, you’re good to go.
Once you are confident with your installation, condition the column and begin running samples. Thanks again for joining us for this Restek Tip.