All radioactive licenses issued by regulatory agencies have a requirement for you to perform a leak or wipe test on your gauges. This test typically takes less than 5 minutes per gauge and it usually involves wiping a small piece of filter paper across areas near the locations of the sources in the gauge. Although the likelihood is very remote, these tests are designed to pick up any external contamination that may have made its way outside of the double encapsulated seals that hold the radioactive material.
The frequency of taking a leak test is determined by what is stated on your radioactive materials license. Manufacturers typically recommend the frequency of leaks tests on their devices – some recommend every year, others every 6 months. But regulatory agencies can require every 6 months regardless of what the manufacturer suggests. If the manufacturer recommends once a year and your licensing agency allows once a year then by all means elect once a year tests. But, you must adhere to what your license says.
Make sure to perform leak tests on time and file the results.
Lack of leak tests documents and/or gaps in timely leak test frequency are among the highest noted infractions during inspections. If you do forget to perform a leak test on time you are better off to note the infraction and explain what actions you have taken to ensure such oversights will not occur in the future. Don’t try and hide the oversight.