Employers, drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers, concerned parents, and other interested parties who want to identify drug users commonly use urine tests for drug detection. Synthetic urine, which can be purchased online, is used to alter drug tests. But what exactly is synthetic urine, and how does it function? Find out what users need to know before passing a drug test using this unique chemical substance.
Synthetic urine is a man-made substance that contains the same chemical compounds as real human urine and mimics its visual and olfactory properties. It includes components like creatinine, urea, uric acid, ammonia, and sulfates found in inaccurate urine and features specific gravity and pH levels nearly identical to human urine.
While synthetic urine certainly isn’t the only product available to those who need to pass drug tests, it’s among the most convenient and effective options available. Whether you’re planning to apply for a new job or just want to win the trust of a loved one, it’s worth learning more about this helpful tool.
1. What is Synthetic Urine?
Synthetic urine is a mixture of chemicals containing the same organic and inorganic compounds as regular human urine. Most consumers know it as a quick fix for an unexpected drug test, but synthetic urine history dates back to the 1800s. In a lab, researchers synthesized urea, one of the primary components of natural and synthetic urine, making it the first organic compound ever created.
Today’s products are much more sophisticated than the urea produced by chemist Friedrich Wöhler. They contain far more ingredients and can better mimic the color, pH level, and other properties of actual urine. As a result, it can help some weed smokers and other drug users pass specific urine tests.
A quick caveat: it will only fool the tests if prepared correctly and can’t compete against the most sophisticated types of urine tests. That being said, synthetic urine still has its uses.
Users get mixed results from synthetic urine because every product has a slightly different chemical composition, and some are more convincing than others.
Those that work best contain all the chemical compounds found in natural urine and can maintain the correct color and temperature before test submission. Here’s what to look for:
- Sodium chloride
- Potassium chloride
- Sodium phosphate
- Distilled water
Choosing products that use distilled water is essential because it allows manufacturers to manage their pH levels correctly. It won’t fool even the least sensitive tests if it doesn’t have the right pH level.
Not all synthetic urine products match the compounds of natural urine fully, so independent research is recommended. Ensure the product includes urea, which is crucial for passing most laboratory tests.
It’s equally important to check for creatinine. This substance is a waste product produced by your muscles and removed from the body by the kidneys. Every average person has some creatinine in their urine, so if the product doesn’t, don’t buy it.
Powdered vs. Liquid Synthetic Urine
Those looking for a way around failing their drug tests have two options: liquid synthetic urine and powdered urine. It may be tempting to assume that powdered natural urine is more effective than synthetic alternatives, but this is rarely true.
Although some powdered urine products are made by dehydrating natural urine, most contain just as many added compounds as synthetic urine and are just as easy to detect.
Mixing powdered urine with water to the correct ratio and maintaining it at body temperature is necessary. It is ill-advised to rush this process, especially during surprise drug tests, as incorrect ratios can be easily detected.
Synthetic urine contains all the same organic and inorganic compounds as natural urine. Every manufacturer uses a different proprietary formula, so it takes some legwork to find the right one. Still, once users have purchased a top product, it’s a much more foolproof method.
Unlike powdered urine, synthetic urine comes pre-mixed in liquid form. Users will still need to warm it up to body temperature before their tests, but they won’t have to worry about getting ratios right or having the time to prepare in private. Just remember that liquid synthetic urine has a shorter shelf-life, so emergency supplies must be replenished more often.
2. What is Synthetic Urine Used For?
So far, this article has focused primarily on using synthetic urine to pass drug tests. That’s one of the many reasons consumers buy powdered and liquid products. Here are only a few of the other reasons you might want to pick some up:
- Animal Repellents: Gardeners increasingly use synthetic urine to deter rodents and other pests from infesting their gardens. It’s as effective as real urine but more cost-efficient and lacks the unpleasantness associated with the real thing.
- Education and Clinical Experiments: Medical schools worldwide use synthetic urine to teach students about urinalysis tests and clinical experiments. It’s cheaper than purchasing real urine, and its easy availability makes buying synthetic urine in bulk easy for school administrators.
- Testing Cleaning Agents: Salespeople and marketers frequently use synthetic urine to demonstrate product effectiveness, as seen in commercials depicting stain removal. If stains appear yellow, it’s likely synthetic urine was used.
- Pulling Pranks: Let’s be clear: using any kind of urine to prank a friend should be considered somewhat of a faux pas. If you’re going to do it, though, at least go for the fake stuff and not the real thing.
- Passing Drug Tests: Synthetic urine is mainly utilized to pass drug tests, providing an option for individuals facing repercussions. Success hinges on product quality and proper preparation, often offering a preferable alternative.
3. How Effective is Synthetic Urine for Passing Drug Tests?
Reputable vendors sell products as close to the real deal as possible, but that doesn’t mean it’s 100% effective. The pH level must be spot on to beat even a simple drug test; not all products hit that benchmark.
Plus, even high-quality synthetic urine can’t mimic the froth that forms natural urine when shaken because it lacks the protein in regular urine. If the lab tests samples to catch fake negatives, it’s still relatively easy to tell the difference.
Despite processing thousands daily, lab priorities may not always focus on drug test urine samples. Synthetic urine, both powdered and liquid, can resemble real urine if it contains the right compounds and lab techs don’t check for froth.
Some high-quality liquid synthetic urine products can replicate the frothy bubbles found in natural urine, a claim not made by powdered urine products. Proper storage, heating, and usage are crucial to avoid failed drug tests. Liquid products require less preparation time than powdered ones, making them preferable for surprise screenings. To prepare liquid synthetic urine, heating is typically necessary using provided heating pads and belts, as instructed in advance. This ensures temperature accuracy, which is vital for passing supervised drug tests.
4. The Legality
As of right now, there is no federal law against submitting synthetic urine instead of the real thing for a drug test. However, many states have passed laws that make it illegal to attempt to falsify drug test results. Here are the countries that have explicitly banned the use of synthetic urine:
- New Jersey
- New Hampshire
- South Carolina
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
They wondered how manufacturers solve this legal problem to sell their products everywhere. It’s simple. They market synthetic urine as a gag gift, a rodent deterrent, or another type of work unrelated to drug screening.
Though making such claims if caught during a drug test is challenging, it’s worth noting that these claims aren’t unfounded.
Manufacturers must include a disclaimer stating synthetic urine isn’t intended for passing drug tests, but if that’s your intent, you can disregard it, similar to tobacco disclaimers in smoke shops.
In most cases, states that have banned synthetic urine consider possession of it a misdemeanor offense. Some states only prosecute those who violate anti-drug test cheating laws, which may not always specifically ban synthetic urine.
The penalties for getting caught can be pretty stiff. For example, in South Carolina, first-time offenders can expect to face up to three years in prison, fines of up to $5,000, or both. In North Carolina, the second offense is a Class I felony.
Steep fines and prison time aren’t the only potential consequences for failing to falsify a drug test successfully. Employers tend to frown upon the use of synthetic urine, and do school administrators and over-controlling parents.
Ultimately, it’s up to each user whether he or she wants to accept those risks. If the consequences of failing the test are worse than getting caught falsifying it, it’s still worth a shot.