DNA testing kits have become increasingly popular for exploring genealogy and ancestry in today's world. They are a valuable tool for discovering one's ancestral roots. AncestryDNA is one of the leading providers of these DNA testing kits, offering insights into one's genetic makeup and family history. However, a question that often arises among users is, “Do Ancestry DNA kits expire?” This detailed article will delve into the expiration of AncestryDNA kits and shed light on the implications of using an expired kit.
Did You Know? Your AncestryDNA Data includes 700,000 markers, which can be used to learn everything from disease risk and drug sensitivities to nutritional requirements and fitness parameters. Learn more.
Hear how people like you have benefited from uploading ancestry test data to Xcode Life:
Before we discuss the expiration of AncestryDNA kits, let's take a moment to understand what AncestryDNA is all about.
AncestryDNA is a convenient way to explore your family's history right from your home.
Combining advanced genetic science with a vast online family history resource helps you discover where your ancestors came from.
Using a simple saliva sample, AncestryDNA analyzes your entire genome at over 700,000 locations.
By comparing your markers to population data from 1,800 global regions, it provides an ethnicity estimate and a list of DNA matches-potential relatives who share a connection with you. These results serve as a starting point for further family history research.
Unlike other DNA tests, AncestryDNA examines autosomal DNA rooted from both sides of your family, including siblings, cousins, and other relatives.
After submitting your DNA sample within 6 to 8 weeks, you'll receive an email with a link to access your results. AncestryDNA also offers many online family history resources to enhance your DNA findings.
- No membership is required to receive your AncestryDNA results.
- AncestryDNA kits are available from authorized sellers like Ancestry, Amazon, and Walmart.
Do Ancestry DNA Kits Expire?
The answer is a resounding no!
Ancestry kits stand the test of time, never expiring.
According to real-life experiences shared by users on Reddit and information from the manufacturer's documents, AncestryDNA kits have a remarkably long shelf life.
Users have reported successfully using kits that were several years old, with some even using kits that were six years old without any issues.
While there may be instances where an old kit doesn't work, Ancestry.com offers a solution by replacing it free of charge.
Ancestry.com does not have a strict expiration date for their DNA kits.
The mention of "one year" on some website documents is more of an advisory guideline than a hard limit.
They will send a replacement kit if the sample has degraded and cannot provide enough usable DNA.
When examining the contents of the DNA kits, it's clear that the main components, such as the sealed saliva collection tube, plastic collection bag, and cardboard mailing box, do not have expiration dates and are designed to withstand the test of time.
The blue stabilizing liquid in the kit, which is meant to be mixed with the saliva sample, is also designed to remain stable for a considerable period.
The stabilizing fluid, provided by DNA Genotek, the manufacturer of AncestryDNA kits, can keep the DNA in saliva stable for up to five years.
This stability is achieved through proprietary reagents that prevent bacterial contamination and DNA degradation.
What Happens When You Use An Expired AncestryDNA Kit?
Now that we understand the expiration of AncestryDNA kits, let's explore what happens if you use an expired kit.
When using an expired AncestryDNA kit, there is a possibility that the sample quality may be compromised.
Over time, the DNA within the saliva sample may degrade, leading to a lower quantity or quality of genetic material.
This degradation could impact the accuracy and reliability of the test results.
While some expired kits may still yield valid and useful information, there is an increased risk of indefinite or less precise results.
To maximize the chances of obtaining accurate results, following the instructions provided by AncestryDNA and submitting your sample within the recommended time frame is advisable.
However, if circumstances prevent you from doing so, it is worth contacting AncestryDNA's customer support for guidance on proceeding with an expired kit.
Here's An Interesting Read For You
AncestryDNA vs 23andMe: Which Is Better For Raw Data Analysis?
Does AncestryDNA Replace An Expired Kit Free Of Charge?
AncestryDNA recognizes that situations may arise where users cannot submit their samples before the expiration date.
In such cases, they do offer support and potential solutions.
AncestryDNA kits have specific circumstances in which a free replacement kit can be requested. These include cases if:
- The kit doesn't arrive within 25 business days from the date of purchase.
- A kit comes broken.
- The sample is received after 40 days of being mailed.
- The kit has not been activated, and the activation code is lost.
Replacement kits are typically delivered within 14 business days.
It's important to note that activated kits that cannot be processed at the lab will also receive a free replacement kit.
After the date of purchase, DNA kits can be used for at least a year and frequently for much longer.
If you have had it for over a year, activating your DNA kit and sending your sample is advised.
If the sample fails during laboratory testing, AncestryDNA offers a replacement kit.
Summary: Do AncestryDNA Kits Expire?
AncestryDNA kits do not have an expiration date and can be used for a considerable time. Real-life experiences from users on Reddit and information from the manufacturer's documents confirm the longevity of these kits.
While there may be instances where an old kit doesn't work, Ancestry.com offers free replacements if the sample has degraded and needs more usable DNA.
The kit's main components, such as the sealed saliva collection tube, plastic collection bag, and cardboard mailing box, have no expiry dates.
The blue DNA stabilizing liquid in the kit remains intact for up to five years. When using an expired kit, sample quality can be compromised, which may affect the accuracy of the test results.
However, following the instructions and submitting the sample within the recommended time frame maximizes the chances of obtaining accurate results.
AncestryDNA offers free replacement kits under specific circumstances, such as delayed delivery, broken kits, late sample submission, or lost activation codes.
Overall, AncestryDNA strives to provide users with a reliable and convenient genetic testing experience, even if the kits have been unused for an extended period.
A happy customer
I am so glad I found XCode! I had my DNA results from Ancestry and was able to upload them to XCode and get answers to so many of my gene questions. Super quick turn around - they usually quote 24 hours turn around but for me it was more like 12 hours. I recently had a friend diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer so I felt I needed to get answers to my breast cancer possibilities. XCode gave me answers in ~12 hours. THANK YOU!- Kimberlee Jackson
Explore Your Ancestry DNA Raw Data
Here’s how you can get the most out of your DNA raw data in 3 simple steps:
- Download your raw data file from AncestryDNA, 23andMe, or any other ancestry company. You can get a 23andMe kit from here if you don't have one.
- Buy any of our 10 health and wellness reports (or the Xcode Life Genome Pack for a 48% discount)
- Upload your raw data and receive your results within 24 hours.