What is Mold Testing? Is It Different From Mold Inspection? Why Is It Important?
Mold testing and mold inspection aren’t quite alike or interchangeable or have the same meaning. Mold inspection is when a certified mold inspector looks for signs of mold, its whereabouts and affected areas basically while mold testing is the process of taking air and surface samples to analyze.
According to EPA you actually do not need to unnecessarily get mold inspection or mold testing done, just out of fear. When you can see visible mold, you don’t need mold testing or inspection, a mold removal specialist/company or even you in case it is a small spread can easily handle the situation by following mold removal guidelines. However, that doesn’t mean that mold testing or mold inspection is never needed, or it is useless. On various occasions mold inspection and testing are vital, but not in cases where it is a simple household mold that is already visible.
However, if there is smell and you are suffering from allergies and every sign that you have mold in your home but no sight of a mold is a situation you will need professional inspection and testing.
When do you need mold testing and/or mold inspection?
1. To find out whether the mold is in an elevated level and where it is located when there is no visible mold but musty mold smell is present.
2. You’ve had water issues and plumbing leaks in your home and you have a suspicion that elevated mold might be behind walls and in the air or other difficult places.
3. Mold testing is important to post mold removal as it is a means to ensure that mold issues have actually been solved, because you’d need another mold remediation in case it is not.
4. Healthy concerns might need mold testing and mold inspection in some instances. For example, when someone is sick with all symptoms of mold exposure and doctors can’t find any other diagnosis for the case.
5. When you are selling or buying property, for the purpose of sellers’ and buyers’ protection
What are the different kinds of mold testing?
There are two kinds of mold testing. One is when air samples are taken and the other when surface samples are taken.
The most common method for taking air sample is by using a spore trap and collecting a sample. Surface samples are taken using a variety of ways, mainly three.
- First is called bulk samples where a piece of the area to be sampled is removed physically and sent for testing in a laboratory
- Next are swab samples where a cotton swab is rubbed across the area to be tested or sampled and the swab is sent for testing
- The third one is called tape samples where a fragment of clear tape is pressed against the area and then removed along mold spores the tape pulls and then the tape is sent to testing.