Environmental Health & Safety

Geiger Counter Calibrations and Repair

Geiger counters are required to be calibrated once every year. You can determine when your gieger counter was last calibrated by checking the calibration sticker attached to it. If it has not been calibrated within the last year, you should bring the geiger counter up to Environmental Health and Safety for calibration. It will be sent out to a vendor for calibration, which takes up to 4 weeks. Radiation Safety may be able lend you a geiger counter, if you absolutely need one. However, we only have 6 spares that we can give out.

If your geiger counter is damaged or inoperable and needs repair Radiation Safety can send it out to our vendor. We may be able to lend you a spare geiger counter during the time it is out. However, we cannot guarantee availability of a spare..

If your batteries die you should not bring the geiger counter up to Radiation Safety. Determine if the batteries are regular batteries that you can obtain at a department or hardware store. It will cost you less money if you replace them on your own rather than if we have to ship the geiger counter out. Otherwise, if the geiger counter requires a special battery bring it up to Radiation Safety and we will send it out for you.


When conducting surveys with a Geiger counter: 

  • Ensure that the instrument has been calibrated within the last 12 months,
  • Ensure that the batteries are working properly,
  • Check the survey instrument with a known source of material to insure that it is responding to radiation,
  • Monitor the area very slowly at about one-half inch above the surface being monitored to avoid contaminating the detector,
  • Document the results of the survey, the instrument make, model number, serial number, calibration date, and readings must be recorded on the written survey report.