Triethylamine Contamination

There is a strong interference ion signal, M/Z=102, and it is suspected to be the pollution of triethylamine. How can we clean it best and effectively? 

  • Hi dong0002,

    Were you doing negative ion before? TEA is a very difficult contamination to remove.

  • You can also try the following:


    1. Rinse the source with isopropanol, water, 25% nitric acid (15'), water (1,5 h),(remove from MS)

    2. Clean the whole ion path , depends on MS 


    You will also need to clean the whole LC.

    3. Exchanging all peek-capillaries
    4. ultrasonic of the rotor seals in isopropanol
    5. Rinse the whole hplc with 25% nitric acid for 15 Minutes
    6. Rinse the whole system with water, purge the pulse damper several times
    7. Rinse the system one night with 50% isopropanol/water with 0.1% FA

  • Dong-

    TEA and other amine ion-pairing reagents can be hard to remove from the LC.MS system.

    I have found this works well.  Make sure your reservoirs/frits are clean and flush the HPLC at a low flow rate (~0.05-0.1 ml/min) with 50% iPrOH/40% H2O, and 10% AcOH for a couple of days.  Do not send this to the MS source, but either divert to waste or disconnect solvent line form the MS and place in a waste receptacle.

    Make sure to clean the source, nebulizer and spray shield.

    You will want to use good chemical hyenine if you use nitric acid since residue left in or around the HPLC (leaks..) will cause corrosion of nearby equipment.

  • Thank you for your answer, best regards .

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