What factors affect HPLC column lifetime?



Last Updated: 4/4/2014

The following factors contribute to the degradation of chromatography and subsequent replacement of HPLC columns:

  • Over time, the stationary phase backbone (i.e. silica) will begin to breakdown, resulting in the formation of column voids. This results in peak broadening and splitting, and subsequently loss of sensitivity and resolution. 
  • The accumulation of fine particles can also cause an increase in pressure, which will further decrease lifetime. 
  • Even under neutral pH, the stationary phase ligand may be lost over time resulting in reduced retention and efficiency. 

The injection of problematic samples and/or harsh running condition can significantly shorten column life (i.e. number of injections). To maximize column lifetime, especially with problematic samples, we recommend SecurityGuard and SecurityGuard ULTRA. Phenex syringe filters can also increase column lifetimes and improve system uptime by removing particulates from your sample prior to analysis.