Is Mold Testing Necessary?
Why You Need Mold Testing Services
If you can actually see mold, do you still have to test for mold? Yes. Here’s why.
- You want to be sure that any discoloration or staining you think is mold actually is mold. And, if it is, precisely what type of mold is it so the mold can be removed correctly.
- You want to be assured that you and anyone living or working with you in the building have not been exposed to molds that may cause health problems.
- You want to avoid confusion with similar molds that may not present a mold problem.
- You may need documentation on the types of the molds in case of litigation.
Objectives of mold inspection and mold testing
Specifically, where there is no obvious visible mold growth, SafeAir Certified Mold Inspection tests for mold to find out if airborne mold spores are present or absent. If toxic black mold spores are present, we then determine their compositions and concentrations, which is especially important in situations where occupants of the building complain of not feeling well.
Where mold growth is visible, we test to determine if the mold spores have become airborne. The information obtained can be used in monitoring the effectiveness of mold removal, and also can indicate if there has been human exposure.
For example, our detailed mold inspection objectives in hospital environments are to…
- Detect the growth of Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus flavus, and Aspergillus niger, which cause aspergilloses in immuno-compromised patients.
- Determine if outbreaks of invasive aspergillosis resulted from the hospital’s construction or demolition activities.
- Determine potential sources of nosocomial aspergillosis.
- Monitor environmental mold spore contamination from outside sources.
- Identify cleaning procedures that could release high concentrations of airborne Aspergillus mold spores.
- Evaluate the effectiveness of HEPA filters in laminar flow facilities.
- Evaluate the effectiveness of procedures to contain hospital building work from hospital wards and other areas where high-risk patients are managed.
- Determine the level of mold contamination before initial occupancy of special controlled environments, such as operating rooms.
Data required with mold inspection and mold testing
Once we have defined the objectives of our mold inspection, and the decision has been made to test for mold, certain data is required, particularly the analytical details needed to determine the type and number of mold samples to take during mold testing. The level of analytical details required depends on the questions the analytical results must answer. For example, we might want to know whether certain discolorations are mold or due to mold growth, and if so, which mold type. To answer that, it would be sufficient to take a lift tape sample for direct microscopic examination (DME) analysis.