Mold testing doesn’t tell you if there is mold in your home … if you know anything about mold, you know that there is mold inside every home. It’s in the air and enters homes through open doors and windows, on our clothes, shoes and pets.
The purpose of mold testing is to determine if the amount of mold in your home is normal, that is, within a range that is unlikely to cause a mold colony to form.
You hear about all kinds of home maintenance and preventative services (like mold testing), but how do you know if your home actually needs them? You can waste a lot of money on testing and inspections that your home doesn’t need.
A specialist from Pure Maintenance of Central Illinois can guide you in these areas. Mold air quality test is a good example. You don’t need to test for mold frequently, especially if there are no indicators that would lead you to believe there could be a mold issue.
Keep reading to see what signs to look for.
Indicators that You Need Mold Testing
Mold experts agree that testing should be done when mold growth is likely to occur. This could be because of a roof leak or a busted pipe inside your home. Otherwise, there is no set schedule for mold testing. Having it done yearly, “just to be sure,” is not necessary, although you are welcome to do mold testing as often as you like.
Mold testing is needed when mold spores, and a water source fine each other. There are many instances that can lead to mold formation. Being aware of the signs that indicate mold is present in your home, you can quickly schedule testing to be sure.
If you see any of the following in your home, you should have mold testing done. By catching mold growth in its earliest stages, you will avoid the cost and hassle of extensive mold removal.
A mold colony is the very last sign you’ll need to have mold testing done.
If there is visible mold in your kitchen, basement, or any other common living space, it’s very probable that there is mold somewhere you can’t see it as well. A visible mold colony needs to be removed, and the rest of your home should be tested.
A mold expert can also swab the colony and test the results so you know exactly what species of mold you are dealing with.
A musty, earthy odor is commonly associated with mold. This smell is often associated with older homes or homes that have been closed up for a while. If you smell this, it means that mold has already germinated and started to spread.
Mold is one of the most common allergens in the world. Only certain types of mold cause allergic reactions, but most of them can produce allergy-like symptoms, including itchy, watery eyes, skin rashes, congestion and coughing.
Mold is also responsible for headaches and respiratory issues. It is especially risky for someone with a respiratory condition to live in a home with mold.
If you or a loved one starts to experience a health problem that has no other cause, mold could be the problem.
Any sign of excess water – a water leak, a drippy faucet, roof leaks, basement flooding – can lead to mold. Water damage is more than just a stain. In many cases, excess moisture is still present in the drywall or wood that has water damage.
Regardless of how long the water damage has been there, you should have your home tested for mold and have the damage repaired.
Past Mold Problems
Unfortunately, if your home has had mold issues in the past, it is prone to more in the future. While it is not necessary for most homes to have regular mold testing done, a home that is at high risk for mold issues should be tested every year or two, just to be sure.
Of course, you want to identify and eliminate the original mold source so mold growth is not a recurring problem. Mold remediation, in which a mold removal team reduces the mold levels within your home, is also a good idea if you have had several instances of household mold.
Buying or Selling a Home
This occurrence also warrants a mold inspection.
It may be written in your contract that a mold inspection must be done. If it isn’t required, you might want to have one done anyway if you’re the one buying the house, or renting, for that matter. Every agreement is different, but making sure the home you are buying is safe should always be a part of that process.
Why Test for Mold?
Mold is extremely dangerous for humans and animals. As explained above, it causes a host of health problems, often while hidden inside your walls, under the carpet, or in the basement. These hiding places protect mold from disturbance and allow it to reproduce and spread at will.
Mold also destroys organic materials like wood, so it can literally weaken the boards and beams that hold your house together. Taking care of a small mold issue before it gets out of hand will prevent this terrible scenario.
Professional Mold Testing
Mold testing kits can be good for preliminary testing. These tests, available at most hardware stores, can put your mind at ease or convince you to call a pro with their results, but remember…there is no substitute for a professional’s advice.
We highly recommend professional mold testing from Pure Maintenance of Central Illinois if any of the conditions above are present. You can’t be too careful when it comes to mold due to its harmful effects on people’s health and the damage it can do to your home.
Professional mold testing is quick and affordable, so there’s no reason to put it off. If you have noticed any of the signs above, contact a local mold removal company to have your home tested.