This Information Applies To: Agilent GC Systems
Peak splitting is when a single compound is shown in the chromatogram as two peaks usually unresolved, or one of the peaks is a shoulder.
Other chromatographic problems are identified in Basic Troubleshooting for GC Systems . Regular maintenance of your instrument in accordance with the recommended maintenance schedule will reduce the incidence of chromatography problems.
Peak splitting and broadening are a result of the analyte being deposited incorrectly onto the column (Figure 1):
Tip: Peak splitting is a single compound effect, not near coeluting compounds.
|Possible cause of peak splitting and broadening||Solution|
|Injection technique (manual injection)||Check that the syringe plunger is moving freely. The solution should be pulled into the syringe body, and moving freely and fast when plunger is depressed.
Use an autosampler
|Improper column installation||Remove and reinstall the column. See Capillary column installation quick reference guide|
|Injector temperature too low||Increase the injector temperature to ensure fast transfer of analyte to the column|
|Injector temperature is too high, causing analyte degradation||Reduce the injector temperature or change to an on-column injection technique|
|Mixed sample solvent with large differences in polarity or boiling points||The analyte has different solubility in different solvents. Change to a single solvent|
|Poor sample focusing||Use a retention gap|
If these procedures have not resolved the peak splitting, contact Agilent Technical Support.
Learn how to effectively troubleshoot your Agilent GC System:
GC-0GEN-1040z - Practical Steps in GC Troubleshooting
GC-0GEN-2040zs - GC Troubleshooting Series e-learning courses available from Agilent education