How do professionals detect mold?
Mold can be a significant issue for homebuyers, as it can cause occupants health problems and be difficult and costly to remove. Unfortunately, it can also be challenging to detect, as it often hides in areas that are difficult to access, such as behind walls, attics, or crawlspaces. This is why it is essential to employ the services of a qualified professional to detect mold during a home inspection.
Professional mold detection typically follows a few steps. First, the inspector will inspect the visible areas of the home, looking for signs of moisture and water damage. They will use moisture meters to identify areas where water has been present in the house. They may also use infrared cameras to detect any temperature differences that could indicate the presence of mold.
In addition to visible inspections, the inspector will use unique testing methods to identify mold. Air quality tests measure levels of mold spores in the air and can help determine the type and quantity of mold present. There are also surface tests, which involve swabbing a surface and testing the sample for mold.
Sometimes, the inspector may recommend further testing, such as a microbial inspection. This involves collecting samples from the walls and other materials and testing them in a laboratory. This type of testing can be costly and is usually only recommended if the inspector has identified a potential problem.
Finally, the inspector will provide recommendations on mitigating any mold found. This could involve repairing leaks or water damage, improving ventilation, or installing a dehumidifier. The inspector may also suggest an industrial-grade cleaner to remove mold from hard surfaces.
In conclusion, professionals use several methods to detect and identify mold in a home. This includes visible inspections, air and surface testing, and, in some cases, microbial testing. An experienced inspector can locate and recommend mitigating mold issues using these methods.