Are you wondering if you should purchase a house mold test kit or hire a professional mold tester? We’ll tell you when a home mold test might be needed and when you can save your money.
If you suspect mold in your home but don’t see any mold, a mold test can confirm the presence of mold and help you figure out where it is, if in fact there is mold in your home. Provided the test is accurate, it can also let you know if your home is mold-free. There are a couple of instances when this might be important.
If you are experiencing symptoms of mold-related health problems but aren’t certain that mold is causing your symptoms, testing your home for mold can help you obtain an accurate diagnosis. An accurate diagnosis may be needed in order to get appropriate treatment. Also, if you’re experiencing symptoms of mold-related illness but aren’t sure where you’re being exposed to mold, testing your home for mold can help you figure it out. If your home turns out to be mold free, you may need to talk to your employer about having your workplace tested for mold.
Your doctor may or may not need to know what type of mold is making you sick. If your doctor feels it would be beneficial to know the type of mold to which you’ve been exposed, you can have a house mold test done.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also suggests testing for mold after mold has been removed from the home in order to make certain all traces of mold have been removed. This would be especially important if you have mold-related health problems, so that you can make a full recovery.
The Environmental Protection Agency says that if you have visible mold in your home, you probably don’t need to test your home for mold. After all, if you can see it, you already know there is mold in your home. There are no established safe levels of mold exposure, so mold testing cannot tell you if you have dangerously high levels of mold or not. You can assume any amount of mold in your home is not good for you. Furthermore, if you have visible mold, there is probably even more mold that you don’t see, so you can assume your home has at least a moderate amount of mold growing in it.
You still might want to test after the mold has been removed, however. It is not safe to assume that just because you no longer see any mold, it is all gone.
A home mold test can tell you what kind of mold is growing in your home, but most of the time, you don’t really need to identify the mold. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all types of mold in the home are considered harmful, or at least potentially harmful, so it doesn’t really matter what type of mold you have. You’ll want to get rid of it, whatever kind it is. If you do want to know what kind of mold is present in your home, though, you can have it tested.
If you need to test your home for mold, you probably do need to hire a professional to do it. You can purchase do-it-yourself mold test kits and some of them are quite inexpensive. They aren’t always accurate, however, and some only test for a few of the most common types of mold. There are more than 300 different types of mold sometimes found in homes throughout the U.S., though, so those limited tests may miss the type growing in your home, giving you a false negative result.
User error is another factor sometimes affecting the accuracy of do-it-yourself home mold tests. Mold tests must be conducted with precision and it’s easy to make a mistake if you’re not familiar with the process. Professional mold testers are usually engineers and they are trained to follow a precise protocol that ensures accurate results. The EPA recommends hiring a certified mold tester that adheres to the methods established by professional organizations like the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) and the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH).
If you need a house mold test, just follow this link to get a list of experienced certified mold testers in your area.
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