Various methods of nucleic acid (NA) extraction were investigated with the aim of developing a quantitative method of NA extraction from five representative strains of biomining microorganisms. The process of removing cells from mineral surfaces, lysing microorganisms, precipitating NA and purifying RNA were analysed. The success of each method was examined spectrophotometrically, by agarose gel electrophoresis and PCR or quantitative real time PCR (qPCR). The most important step was shown to be cellular lysis, which principally impacted on the quantity of NA extracted from each strain. The quantity and quality of extracted NA was highly dependent on the method of NA precipitation. This study resulted in the development of a NA extraction method that reliably and reproducibly extracted NA from five strains of biomining microorganisms.