Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (2023)

Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (1)

Quick answer: A faint line on a drug test is deemed a NEGATIVE TEST RESULT, which suggests that the test did not discover any trace of that substance above the test’s cutoff level.

When you see two lines (no matter if it's a very faint line on a drug test forTHC or a dark line), it means that the result of your test is negative. If you’re using an Exploro THC test and see that the bottom line shows up very faint, that means that the concentration of THC metabolites in your body is somewhere around 50ng/ml (which is the cut-off level of the Exploro THC test strips).

Keep reading to learn:

(Video) How to read faint lines on a drug test strip drug testing kit information

  • What Do "C" and "T" Stand For on a Drug Test?
  • What Can Cause a Faint Line on a Drug Test?
  • How to Prevent Faint Lines on Drug Tests
  • The Bottom Line (Pun Intended!)
  • FAQs
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What Do "C" and "T" Stand For on a Drug Test?

The C stands for the "Control" line in a THC rapid drug test. The T stands for the "Test" line. The Control line indicates that the gadget is working properly, while the Test line indicates that no drugs are present.

You can see the different results of a THC urine drug test below. If there is only one line in the "C" area, the test is POSITIVE. The "T" area with one line (or no line at all) is INVALID.Then we have the infamous “faint” line.

Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (2) Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (3)

How Faint Can a Line Be on a Drug Test & What Can it Look Like? (+ pictures)

On a THC drug test, for example, a faint line can appear as a blurred, pinkish line in the "T" region with a line on top in the "C" area. This is still a NEGATIVE result, even if it's hardly apparent. The most typical reason for a weak T-line is that there is drug present in the sample but not enough to give a positive result beyond the test's cutoff. In the case of Exploro’s THC test, it’s 50ng/ml.

Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (4)

Over-interpreting a faint T-line is not the best practice. A faint T-line with even a smidgeon of color is always considered as a NEGATIVE result. If you have a faint line on your pre-employment drug test, you are still regarded to have passed.

Drug tests are used to identify whether or not a specific substance (in most cases THC) is present in a sample by looking for the drug(s) and their metabolites. Rapid tests are commonly used to determine whether a substance is present in the body in a short period of time. THC metabolites are detected in the form of negative or positive results in at-home tests, but the quantity is not shown.

Here are some examples from Exploro customers and their tests with faint lines.

Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (5)Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (6)

Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (7)Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (8)

Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (9)Faint Line on THC Drug Test Strip? Here's What it Means - Exploro (10)

Pictures source: Exploro customers

What Can Cause a Faint Line on a Drug Test?

Even for donors who have never smoked, THC tests are infamous for showing faint lines. Because of the test's components as well as more natural substances interacting with the urine sample, THC tests are more likely to produce faint lines. Faint lines on drug tests can show up due to the following reasons:

(Video) Exploro Highly Sensitive THC Test :: Product Spotlight :: How Well Do They Work?

  • Not leaving the test strip inside a urine sample for long enough.
  • Not having enough THC in the bloodstream to cause a fully positive result, but enough to leave a small trace, causing a faint line.
  • Chemical imbalances or dilution of the urine sample (for example, drinking too much water before doing the test).
  • Using an expired test. Make sure to always check the expiration date.
  • Taking over-the-counter medication that is chemically equivalent to the drug being tested.

Every substance has a baseline (cutoff) that shows up on any drug test. The cutoff level for Exploro is 50/ng per ml, so if you test below that, you are always negative. There is always a TINY amount of wiggle room in any drug test because different tests may have different cutoff levels. If your test shows a faint line, however, your employer cannot fire you for failing a drug test because the result is still considered negative. However, it’s possible that your employer will ask for a confirmatory lab test.

How to Prevent Faint Lines on Drug Tests

Although you may encounter faint lines on a drug test, you can always take steps to ensure that your results are as precise as possible:

  • During testing and storage, keep an eye on independent factors, like temperature.
  • At the 5-minute point, consistently read the results, but disregard any results after the 8-minute mark.
  • Throw away any opened and unused tests as well as any expired tests.
  • Ideally, conduct the test first thing in the morning, before drinking any water.
  • If necessary, submit a list of all drugs, supplements, and energy drinks you took prior to the test.
(Video) Faint Lines on a Drug Test

The Bottom Line (Pun Intended!)

Regardless of how light they are, faint lines in the test zone of the sample are declared negative. Most people use THC testing strips at home in order to find out whether or not the drug is present in the body below the cutoff level (this may differ from test to test).

A faint line on a drug test is common and will always mean it is a negative result, no matter what. If you keep getting faint lines or no lines on your test, make sure to check the points above. Otherwise, try again with another test (without drinking water) and see what result you get.


What does a very very faint line almost invisible mean? Is it positive?

No. It is still a negative result even if the second line is super faint. ANY line in the “T” area, indicates a negative outcome. The tests don't check for thenumber of drugs in your body or urine; they merely check for the presence.

Will I pass a lab test with a faint line?

The cutoffs for at-home tests are frequently higher than for lab tests. The laboratory tests however are more precise. If you have a few days until a lab test for marijuana, the faint lines are unimportant. The reason is, that if there is a line, it means the result is negative.

TIP: In the days before your drug test, try to avoid eating a lot of sugar or carbohydrates, or try one of these THC detox methods. Marijuana lingers in your fat, so if you're overweight and out of shape, or if you have any health problems, getting the drug's metabolites out of your urine may take longer.

What if I get two faint lines on my drug test?

Your test is negative. If two lines show up even if faint, it still means it’s a negative. The cause of faintness can be a range of reasons, but no matter what, the result does not change.

(Video) Why you get faint lines on drug tests and how to interpret the results

Is it possible to get a faint line on a 7-panel drug test?

Yes, a faint line can appear on a 7-panel drug test. As each drug has its own strip on a 7-panel test and the results are individual to each, you can see where you tested negative (with a faint line in either the “T” or “C” area) or positive (only one line in the “C” area).

Is it a positive result if only the Test line ("T") appears?

No. If the Control line ("C") doesn't show up, the test is invalid. Only the Control line ("C") must be visible for a positive test result.

Why isn't the top line ("C") on my test strip visible?

If the Control line ("C") does not appear on your THC test strip, make sure that your test isn’t expired, the temperature of the urine and room is not too cold or hot, etc.Then, dothe test again. In some cases, you might not see the C-line because the test was flooded by too much urine or the test was added to the urine too quickly.

Why do I get both positive and negative results in such a short time?

In rare situations, contradictory test findings can appear within a short period of time (even within the same day). This often indicates the THC content in your body is roughly around 50 ng/ml (the cutoff level of Exploro® test strips).

My test strip is negative after 5 minutes, but it is positive after 20 minutes. Why?

When testing your urine for THC, make sure you follow the directions that came with the product. Ensure that you verify your test at exactly 5 minutes and don’t interpret the results after 8 minutes. The chemical reaction becomes unstable after 8 minutes, and color changes may occur.


Is a faint line negative? ›

Does a faint line indicate a negative result? Yes, faint lines do indicate negative results. The presence of a test line, regardless of how light, indicates a negative result. Some test lines tend to run naturally lighter than others, for example #3.

Does two lines mean positive on a drug test? ›

Lines appear on the test strip for each drug being measured. If two lines appear, including two faint lines, the test is negative. If only the control line appears, the test is positive.

Does negative mean on a drug test? ›

A negative drug test result means that testing did not detect the presence of a targeted drug or its metabolites in a particular sample. Negative drug tests are also referred to as negative results.

How accurate are Aidteq? ›

Our engine has profiled the reviewer patterns and has determined that there is minimal deception involved. Our engine has analyzed and discovered that 79.4% of the reviews are reliable. This product had a total of 4,048 reviews as of our last analysis date on Aug 12 2022.

How do you know if you passed a drug test? ›

Drug test results typically take 24 to 48 hours, depending on the type of test being performed (e.g., urine, hair or DOT). If Concentra serves only as the collection site for your drug tests, then results will be reported to you directly from your selected lab/third-party administrator, and result times may vary.

What is a positive drug test? ›

If a drug test result is positive, it means that one or more drugs were found in amounts that suggest drug use or misuse. Positive tests require follow-up testing because they may be wrong (false positives). The follow-up test is usually a test that provides more accurate results.

What color is a positive drug test? ›

Yellow and orange colors indicate a positive test result, while any other color is reported as a negative result. Supplementary File 1.

How do I read my urine test results? ›

Normal values are as follows:
  1. Color – Yellow (light/pale to dark/deep amber)
  2. Clarity/turbidity – Clear or cloudy.
  3. pH – 4.5-8.
  4. Specific gravity – 1.005-1.025.
  5. Glucose - ≤130 mg/d.
  6. Ketones – None.
  7. Nitrites – Negative.
  8. Leukocyte esterase – Negative.
21 Jun 2022

How do you read a drug test kit? ›

Easy@Home Drug Test Dip Cards - YouTube

Is a negative dilute a fail? ›

The second negative dilute is accepted as a negative test result. In settings outside of federal regulations, handling of negative dilute results should be consistent per an organization's Workplace Drug testing policy.

Why is my drug test non negative? ›

A non-negative result reported by the laboratory may mean several different things—drugs detected in the specimen, the specimen is adulterated or substituted, or the specimen is invalid for testing.

What drugs dont show up in drug test? ›

Note: Alcohol, LSD, digoxin, lithium, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and some benzodiazepines, opiates, amphetamine-type stimulants, and most drugs of abuse are not detected by this procedure. For these drugs, the specific confirmation tests should be ordered.

Should I bring my prescriptions to a drug test? ›

I would suggest bringing your prescription with you for the testing and allow the person doing the test to write down the pertinent information, such as doctor's name, prescription expiration, refills, etc. so this can be included in the report if necessary.

Does Walmart drug test? ›

Walmart carries out regular and random drug tests on their employees. Also they do mandatory drug tests on people applying for a position in any of their stores, to promote a healthy workplace.

What can cause a false positive for coke? ›

Individuals who have tested positive for cocaine have claimed that lidocaine, or its primary metabolite, norlidocaine (monoethylglycinexylidide (MEGX)), have caused false positive results for the cocaine metabolite benzoylecgonine (BE) on urinary immunoassay testing.

Will jobs tell you if you fail a drug test? ›

For most workers in the United States, their employer will never disclose a failed drug test. However, many government positions require this information and are permitted to seek it. If a drug test leads to a criminal conviction, the information is public record and may be easily found by an employer.

How do I dispute a positive drug test? ›

How Can I Dispute a False Positive Drug Test?
  1. Step 1: Get out in front of the issue. ...
  2. Step 2: Ask your doctor or pharmacist. ...
  3. Step 3: Ask to retake the drug test.
2 Jul 2021

What happens if I fail a drug test? ›

If the test result is proven to be legitimate (especially after multiple retests), you will most likely lose your job. If drug testing was part of a screening application, the company will probably revoke your job offer. However, in some industries or states, you might be given a second chance.

What is a positive test for Marijuanas? ›

A positive result can mean recent and past marijuana use. The urine marijuana test will be positive if the amount of THC in the sample is more than 50 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL). If you use marijuana but your test is negative, it could be because your THC levels are below this level.

How soon after drug use can a drug be detected in urine? ›

Most drugs of abuse stay in the body for at least a few days after the last use and are traceable with urine tests. Opioids like heroin and oxycodone are detectable for between 1 and 3 days after last use. Stimulants including cocaine, meth, and ADHD medications are detectable for about 2 or 3 days.

Can a drug test tell if it's synthetic urine? ›

If your fake pee has the same pure compounds and density as actual urine, testing companies may not detect it is a fake sample.

What does blue on a drug test mean? ›

The window. turns blue when an adequate volume of specimen is collected which helps to reduce. the number of drug tests that are reported as “quantity insufficient” (QNS) by the lab. • Because an oral fluid collection is observed, there is a lower risk of adulteration or. tampering by the donor.

How does a color test work? ›

With color spot tests, a portion of an unknown powder/residue/crushed tablet is combined with a chemical reagent which may produce a color change. The color change is a presumptive indication of what the unknown could be.

What should you not do before a urine test? ›

- Avoid alcohol, coffee, tea, tobacco and strenuous exercise for 24 hours prior to collection and up to collection time. - Do not consume avocados, bananas, eggplant, pineapples, plums, tomatoes or walnuts for 48 hours before the test.

Can I drink water before urine test? ›

The only thing that affects a dilute sample is the amount of fluid taken in within a short period of time prior to providing the urine sample. If you are seeing results that show you are getting close to a dilute sample, try to stop drinking any fluids 2-4 hours prior to providing the sample.

What should not be in urine? ›

Usually, glucose, ketones, protein, and bilirubin are not detectable in urine. The following are not normally found in urine: Hemoglobin. Nitrites.

How long will delta 8 stay in your system for a drug test? ›

Last Words. While delta-8 THC's effects last up to five hours in your body, the metabolites can stay in your system for up to 90 days. Luckily, the most common tests can detect metabolites for only a few days. However, if you are a chronic user, the test can yield positive even after 30 days.

How long does drug stay in your system chart? ›

How Long Will a Drug Stay in My Body?
DrugIn BloodIn Urine
Amphetamines12 hours1-3 days
Barbiturates1-2 days2-4 days
Benzodiazepines2-3 days3-6 weeks
Cannabis2 weeks7-30 days
9 more rows

What does green mean on a urine test? ›

Green urine sometimes occurs during urinary tract infections caused by pseudomonas bacteria.

How faint a line is positive? ›

If the window on the testing stick shows two lines, the tester is positive for COVID-19. The opaqueness of the lines also can indicate more, Vail said. If the line is fainter, the patient is likely to be less sick, less infectious, or might be nearing the end of infection, Vail said.

How faint is too faint on a pregnancy test? ›

Pregnancy tests with blue or pink dye typically show one line if the result is negative and two if hCG is detected, meaning the result is positive. If you get any type of second line, even a faint one, you are pregnant, says Jennifer Lincoln, MD, an obstetrician in Oregon. "A line is a line, whether faint or dark.

What is the meaning of faint line? ›

Any positive line, no matter how faint, means your result is pregnant. Levels of hCG in your body will increase over the course of your pregnancy. If you test early, your hCG levels may be still be low and you'll see a faint positive line.

How long after a faint positive should I test again? ›

So, if you do get a faint line, Kirkham recommends waiting two or three days, then testing again. If it's still faint, she suggests going to your family doctor for a blood test, which can measure the specific amount of beta hCG, to check if the pregnancy is progressing as it should.

Are evaporation lines Blue? ›

Evaporation lines are colorless streaks, not faint lines. They typically appear if a person waits for longer than the suggested time to read the test result. An evaporation line can also appear if the test gets wet.

Can EVAP lines have color? ›

Evaporation lines are colorless streaks, not actual lines. They typically appear if a person waits for longer than the suggested time to read the test result. An evaporation line can also appear if the test gets wet.

Which line is the control line on first response? ›

The darker line is usually the control line. Sometimes this second line is so faint, you can barely see it. If there is a line, not an evaporation line, but a true line, no matter how light, you should read that as a positive pregnancy test.

Can a faint positive line disappear? ›

That's because the results are accurate when the urine is still wet. Once it dries, urine may leave a faint line where it evaporated – an "evap line." Unlike positive result lines, which are usually dark or bright, an evap line will be colorless.

Are evaporation lines thin or thick? ›

An evaporation line is also often thinner than the control line. In the image above, you can see that the horizontal line is one thickness, while the vertical evaporation line is much thinner and of uneven thickness.

Is it an evaporation line? ›

An evaporation line is a line that appears in the results window of a pregnancy test as the urine dries. It can leave a faint, colorless line. If you're not familiar with evaporation lines, you might see this line and think you're pregnant.

What is the difference between faint and feint? ›

faint/ feint

Anything faint is barely there, but a feint is a fake out. If your understanding of these words is still somewhat faint, never fear! Just keep reading... These words sound the same, but remember that faint has an “ai,” like something as thin as "air," and feint has an “e” like "feign" or “pretend.”

Does a faint line mean miscarriage? ›

A faint positive line can also be a sign of a very early miscarriage, sometimes called a chemical pregnancy, which occurs within the first 12 weeks of a pregnancy, often much earlier.

How do they use a urine test for PT? ›

Leave the strip in the urine for at least 8 seconds (recommend 10 seconds). Remove the pregnancy test and place on a dry flat surface. Wait for coloured bands to appear, depending on the concentration of HCG, results can be seen in as little as 40 seconds.


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