METH FAQS

At present, there is differing scientific opinion over what level of methamphetamine consists as a safe level for people to live in. New Zealand’s Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser, Professor Sir Peter Gluckman has produced a report for the Housing Minister which says there is no evidence that third-hand exposure from methamphetamine smoking causes adverse health effects, and says he cannot see the point in testing homes for methamphetamine because the risk to health is so low in most cases.

Professor Sir Peter Gluckman said the new regime would make 200 previously unsafe Housing New Zealand houses available shortly and save HNZ around $30 million a year in testing and remediation. He also said that he couldn’t see the point of testing, full stop, unless the police or the forensics suspect it has been a place of synthesis. Only 5 to 10 percent of Properties used as operating meth labs are found by police. Sir Peter Gluckman said people were more at risk from mould in their home than they were from meth contamination, and in terms of the housing estate, mould is far more dangerous that meth.

But the meth testing industry has slammed the report, calling the office of the PM’s Chief Science Advisor “reckless”. They have been provided with a report that panders to the economic and social policy direction this government is looking to set.

Often meth is made in bedrooms using hotplates and Pyrex dishes without the need for running water or electricity and only takes a few hours to do a batch with minimal equipment.

Meth is used in a variety of ways:
In most cases, methamphetamine is in the form of a crystalline white powder. The powder has no odor, it tastes bitter, and it dissolves in water easily. There may be other colors as well including brown, pink, or yellow-gray. Crystal meth, on the other hand, comes as clear crystals that look like ice.

Meth is used in a variety of ways:

  • Smoking with glass bongs, hollowed out light bulbs, aluminium drink cans, plastic bottles and anything else they can think of. The drug is heated in a glass pipe, bowl or stem until it becomes gaseous (“smoke”). It’s then inhaled into the lungs. The “smoke” enters the blood stream via the lungs.
  • Intravenious injection that delivers the substance directly into a vein with a needle and syringe.
  • Snorting is a common method of use, where the drug is chopped or crushed into a powder which is then inhaled into the nose. Once inside the nose and sinuses, the drug is absorbed by the blood vessels. When heated on a spoon the vapour is inhaled usually through the nose
  • Crystal can be done in pill form. Users can still take meth in that way today, either with manufactured pills, homemade pills, or other means of ingesting the drug. People mix it into water, juice, soda, or add it to coffee. Some will wrap the meth in a small bit of toilet or tissue paper then swallow it.

Anyone who has an interest in ensuring their environment or assets are free of Methamphetamine contamination. Prospective buyers of property, Tenants, Landlords, should all consider undertaking testing on properties.

  • Prospective buyers – Before making a bid or tendering an offer to purchase real estate
  • Tenants – Before moving into a property
  • Landlords – At the start, during and at the end end of a tenancy
  • Moteliers – Testing rentable units for contamination
  • Lock up Storage Managers -Testing units
  • Marina’s – Testing members boat’s as requested
  • Motorhomes & buying used cars or Stolen vehicles: If your vehicle has been recovered you should get a drug test done on the vehicle to check that there has been no heavy methamphetamine smoking causing contamination or that it has not been used as a methamphetamine laboratory.

It’s a simpler way to make meth in a bottle that unfortunately is just as risky and the process is called shake and bake, which simplifies how meth is created. In the traditional meth-cooking labs, there was equipment needed including things to heat chemicals, glass beakers, and of course all of the various ingredients. So what is shake and bake meth? The shake and bake method of creating meth is faster and takes up less space, and unfortunately, people can do it even while they’re in their car. Shake and bake method requires mixing chemicals in a soda bottle, and while it may seem like a quick fix for people who want to make meth, it’s still extremely dangerous. The chemical reactions that take place in the mixing bottle often lead to an explosion when the cap is removed. The result is serious burns, and there is also the risks associated with disposing of the bottles used to make the drug. They can explode or poison people when they’re thrown out. When people make shake and bake meth, even the smallest error can lead to the explosion, when the cap is removed. The result is serious burns, and there is also the risks associated with disposing of the bottles used to make the drug. They can explode or poison people when they’re thrown out. When people make shake and bake meth, even the smallest error can lead to the explosion.

Smoking is by far the most common form of meth use and cause of property contamination in New Zealand. When meth is smoked, the drug is heated and turned into a vapour. The vapour that is not inhaled by the smoker is then left to linger and will invariably be deposited on the walls, floors, furnishings, and ducting system of the house leaving a detectable residue of meth. The amount of meth residue depends on the amount and frequency of smoking in the property. The far greater concern with regards to property contamination relates to the manufacture of the drug in properties.


The New Zealand standard “NZS8510:2017 Testing and decontamination of methamphetamine-contaminated properties” In summary the standard, NZS8510 references the following decontamination recommendations:


  • 1.5 μg/100cm2 in high use areas (areas of a property frequently used by people) based on an individual sample.
  • 3.8 μg/100cm2 in low use areas (i.e.: roof spaces and crawl spaces) based on an individual sample.


It is important to note that the standard does not distinguish between meth use and manufacture due to the fact that meth labs are sometimes indistinguishable from meth usage.


However, when it comes to buying property, while purchasers may use the Standard as a guide, the reality is that they will always use their own perceived ‘acceptable level’ to determine whether or not they wish to buy a property which tests positive for meth. Most people want no meth in the property they are buying.


Methamphetamine (Meth) is a member of the amphetamine group of synthetic drugs that have a stimulant effect on a person’s central nervous system. In New Zealand the nickname for Meth is P.

No property type is safe from use as a manufacturing facility, whether they be homes, motel rooms, apartments or vehicles. The portability of meth labs means that they can easily be moved and contaminate multiple properties.

At present, there is differing scientific opinion over what level of methamphetamine consists as a safe level for people to live in. New Zealand’s Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser, Professor Sir Peter Gluckman has produced a report for the Housing Minister which says there is no evidence that third-hand exposure from methamphetamine smoking causes adverse health effects, and says he cannot see the point in testing homes for methamphetamine because the risk to health is so low in most cases.

Professor Sir Peter Gluckman said the new regime would make 200 previously unsafe Housing New Zealand houses available shortly and save HNZ around $30 million a year in testing and remediation. He also said that he couldn’t see the point of testing, full stop, unless the police or the forensics suspect it has been a place of synthesis. Only 5 to 10 percent of Properties used as operating meth labs are found by police. Sir Peter Gluckman said people were more at risk from mould in their home than they were from meth contamination, and in terms of the housing estate, mould is far more dangerous that meth.

But the meth testing industry has slammed the report, calling the office of the PM’s Chief Science Advisor “reckless”. They have been provided with a report that panders to the economic and social policy direction this government is looking to set.

Often meth is made in bedrooms using hotplates and Pyrex dishes without the need for running water or electricity and only takes a few hours to do a batch with minimal equipment.

Methamphetamine is a powerful, highly addictive stimulant used illicitly in New Zealand and around the world. It is obtained either through smuggling into the country, or by being manufactured locally in clandestine laboratories (meth labs). These meth labs may be found in residential dwellings, commercial accommodation, and even vehicles.

A dwelling can become contaminated with methamphetamine residues if the drug is manufactured or smoked within it. Smoking usually results in much lower residue levels compared with manufacture.

Meth labs vary in how they manufacture and there are many meth producers today who have found easier ways to make it , unlike the elaborate and clandestine meth labs , and is portable so it can be made in apartments, houses, motels, motorhomes or cars.

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