Many consumers are concerned about mold issues, but they do not know where to turn. It is important to understand the resources and professionals that are available to help. This article provides an overview of mold testing and mold remediation. We define each service and explain how they can provide a solution to your mold situation.
Mold testing is the process of evaluating an environment specifically for the purpose of measuring mold spore counts and species. In simple terms, the purpose is to determine levels of mold contamination. The environment is usually the inside of a home or business.
Tests are typically completed by an industrial hygienist or certified indoor air quality professional. The most common methods for testing comprise of taking air and/or surface samples. The samples collect mold spores which are then shipped off to a lab for evaluation.
The final product delivered to the customer should be a comprehensive report showing the test results along with recommendations to solve the issue at hand.
Mold remediation is the process of mitigating mold damage to bring an environment to an acceptable state. Remediation is commonly referred to as “mold removal” or “cleaning mold.” It is essentially getting rid of the mold problem.
Areas of a property that are most susceptible to mold issues are attics, crawlspaces, basements and under sinks. The goal of mold remediation is source removal. Some technics used in the process are dry-ice blasting, HEPA vacuuming, HEPA sanding, wire brushing and damp cleaning.
The final product following a mold remediation service should be an environment in which elevated mold levels have been eliminated.
Determining whether you need mold testing or remediation is not always clear. In many cases, you may need both.
Mold testing is highly recommended in a few circumstances.
First is when there is ambiguity to a potential mold situation. For example, if you suspect mold, but can’t really see it. Testing will help identify specific mold types and the quantities present.
Second is when you want to establish a baseline or scope before a remediation project starts. Testing before remediating allows for clearly defined goals to be set for the job.
Third is when you need to determine if a remediation project was successful. Post-testing is frequently done to make sure the remediation met the standards established at the beginning of the project.
Fourth is when there is an immunocompromised individual involved. These individuals are more sensitive to their environment. Testing, before and after mold remediation, is a recommended precaution in order to keep them safe.
Many people choose not to utilize mold testing and go straight to the remediation stage. This route is also acceptable in certain scenarios.
One example is if the mold issue is isolated to a small area, typically less than 10 square feet. Another example is if the mold issue is in a non-living space such as an attic. In these cases mold testing may just be overkill and not necessary.
One major red flag you should be aware of is if anyone is offering to perform both testing and remediation. It is a conflict of interest on many levels.
On the front end of a job the contractor could be dishonest about the mold problem thus creating work themselves. On the back end of the project they are grading their own test. Neither circumstance is ethical or in the best interest of the consumer.
A professional mold company should specialize in one area, not both. Never hire a contractor to do mold testing and remediation.
Soil-Away Cleaning & Restoration Services specializes in mold remediation. We service south/central New Hampshire (NH) and northern Massachusetts (MA). Soil-Away is family owned, operated and has been in business for over 25 years. Please contact our office if mold remediation services are needed for your home or business.