If you have reason to suspect that mold may be growing in your home, you should have some testing done to confirm it or rule it out. Even if you have no reason to suspect it, conducting a Mold Test can give you peace of mind that everything is okay. In fact, doing so can give you the opportunity to have the problem resolved before it progresses to the point of interfering with your quality of life.
Mold can produce symptoms that are easily written off as being caused from something else like a common cold or seasonal allergies. If the problems are originating from mold, individuals are likely to become more sensitive with increased exposure. This is one more reason to conduct your Mold Test early, before these symptoms surface.
While you can purchase Mold Test kits from your local home improvement store, the best and most accurate way to determine whether or not you have a mold problem is to have the testing professionally done. That way, you can have a higher level of confidence in the results. There is less of a chance that the results will be skewed by inadequate sampling techniques.
There are three fundamental ways testing should be conducted to detect the presence of mold. Ideally, all three of these methods should be employed to improve the accuracy of the testing.
Air testing is done by taking samples from the air. This will help to determine if there are airborne mold spores that could potentially cause breathing problems or settle on damp surfaces where they will begin to grow. This type of testing can be valuable in situations where visible signs of mold growth are difficult to detect.
Surface testing is done by taking samples from the surface of various materials in the structure. This is frequently done by swabbing the surface. It can also be done by using a special kind of tape that will cause the mold to stick to it when it is placed on a surface and then removed. This is where a trained eye can be extremely beneficial. Mold will not grow evenly across all surfaces. It will also not grow evenly across the entire surface of the same material. Having this test conducted by someone who knows what to look for can minimize the chances of mold going undetected because the wrong surface was swabbed.
Bulk testing is also used in many cases for mold detection. It differs from surface testing in that an actual sample of the material is removed and sent to the lab for analysis. The use of this method is obviously limited because the material that is used can only be taken from an inconspicuous part of the surface.
If your testing does, in fact, reveal the presence of mold, you should make arrangements right away to have the problem taken care of by a mold remediation company. That way, you will have the assurance that the job is done right with the use of all the appropriate methods.