Accuracy of radio carbon dating
by Helen Fryman Question: What about radiocarbon dating? Response: I asked several people who know about this field. (1.) C14 dating is very accurate for wood used up to about 4,000 years ago.
This is only because it is well calibrated with objects of known age.
But it is already clear that the carbon method of dating will have to be recalibrated and corrected in some cases.
Specifically, there are two types of carbon found in organic materials: carbon 12 (C-12) and carbon 14 (C-14).
It is imperative to remember that the material must have been alive at one point to absorb the carbon, meaning that carbon dating of rocks or other inorganic objects is nothing more than inaccurate guesswork.
They are then able to calibrate the carbon dating method to produce fairly accurate results.
Carbon dating is thus accurate within the timeframe set by other archaeological dating techniques.