Not all black spots are mold. Discoloration of surfaces can be caused by a number of things. These are just a few: efflorescence, dirt, rust and insect fecal matter.
We use third-party laboratories for all of our mold tests. This eliminates bias and ensures accurate results. No scare tactics! You will receive a full report of your results in as little as 48 hours of your appointment. Now you can take action sooner rather than later!
Why test your home for mold?
Professional mold testing has several purposes. One of the most common reasons people decide to get a mold test is persistent odours and visible discoloration on walls and other surfaces. Others experience sudden symptoms such as coughing, sneezing and headaches.
There are so many different kinds of mold–black, white, orange, pink, green, etc. It’s extremely difficult to identify just by looking at it. The best way to find out if you have a mold problem is to get a professional mold test.
Getting your home tested for mold will give you important information about the health of your indoor environment. You’ll be able to:
- Assess fungal ecology
- Confirm the presence of mold
- Identify the types of mold present (including black mold)
- Locate the source(s) of moisture
- Evaluate the extent of the contamination
- Assess health risks
- Plan a mold remediation
- Provide evidence for insurance claims/litigation
- Pass clearance testing (to verify job completion)
I already know I have mold. I don’t need a mold test.
Even if you’re sure that you have a mold problem, a mold test will help guide your mold remediation strategy. If you’re hiring a professional mold removal company to do the work, the technicians will use the test results to plan the scope of work and determine appropriate protective measures.
Mold testing can also come in handy when you’re buying a home and want to make sure that there are no hidden mold problems. Standard home inspections typically do not include any type of testing or analysis for mold. Furthermore, home inspectors are not required to have any mold training or certification. They can easily overlook subtle signs of mold that a certified mold inspector will easily catch.
With an air test for mold, you’ll also find out exactly what type of mold is growing in your home, and how bad the contamination is.
How does mold testing work?
Mold detection is a broad term that encompasses not just a physical mold test, but also the entire process of inspecting for mold. Often this includes a visual inspection of the area or a thermal imaging scan. The mold inspector will look for potential sources of moisture in your home, such as damaged plumbing and leaking roofs. Basements and crawlspaces are also equally susceptible to moisture buildup and standing water.
During this process, the mold inspector may take a mold test if the situation calls for it. For example:
- If there is an odour present in the room but no visible mold growth
- If the inspector finds a discoloured material and wants to confirm it’s mold
- If water damage is uncovered and the indoor air quality needs to be checked
Maintaining healthy indoor air quality
Some homeowners opt to monitor the air quality inside their homes regularly in order to prevent mold from becoming a major threat. In this case, mold testing is the perfect tool because it’s fast, easy and gives you an accurate picture of your home indoor air quality.
Do mold test kits work?
Unless you are an indoor environmental professional, you should avoid direct contact with mold. Period. DIY mold testing can release potentially toxic mold spores into your air. Not to mention putting yourself at risk of exposure.
In addition, samples collected using at-home mold test kits are often not handled properly, cross-contaminated and therefore unreliable.
Finally, professional mold services don’t focus just on testing mold, but also on addressing its causes. Your DIY kit may reveal a problem, but it will not tell you the safest and most effective way to get rid of it.
Why Mold Busters is Ontario & Quebec’s go-to mold company
Our comprehensive mold testing services along with our reputation for excellence and customer satisfaction have made us one of the leading mold testing, inspection and remediation companies in Ontario and Quebec.
Ontario Mold Testing Service Areas
Quebec Mold Testing Service Areas
We are always innovating and looking for ways to make our services more accessible to you. We have our En-Route System for real-time tracking your inspector’s arrival time. We also have dedicated Customer Solutions Providers working on your reports and mold tests results. This means you get answers within hours of your appointment.
Common Mold Testing FAQ’s
How do you test for mold?
There are many ways to test for mold. The methodology will depend on the type of information that is required, the state of the environment or material of concern, and the requested turnaround time for results.
Here is a summary of the most common ways to test for mold:
- Air testing (viable & non-viable sampling)
- Surface testing (tape lifts & swabs)
- Bulk testing (physical material sampling)
- Diagnostic testing (instant protein analysis, mVOCs)
- Visual observations (from a trained inspector)
There are pros and cons for each of the testing methods. If you want to know what species of mold may be growing on your wall, a cultured swab or tape lift test may be your best bet. If you want to know whether that odor in your basement is related to hidden mold issue, perhaps air testing will be the way to go. Each case should be individually assessed.
It is always recommended to hire a trained indoor environmental professional to help you with deciding on the right mold test for your situation and to ensure accuracy in the sampling process.
When is mold testing necessary to perform?
Mold testing is most often necessary in cases where there are no visible or obvious signs of mold growth, or to validate that an area has been successfully decontaminated.
Other circumstances that make mold testing necessary is for court cases where third-party proof is required to support one’s argument, or when a physician may suspect mold in the home or office as being the culprit behind an illness.
How long does mold testing take?
As there are various types of mold tests that can be performed, times for each to be complete will vary. Typically, testing for mold in a residential home can take as little as 5 minutes, or be as extensive as 1-2 hours. Depending on the type of test conducted, turnaround times will also vary. There are some mold tests that are relatively instantaneous, some that can have laboratory analyses completed within a few hours, and others that may take a few weeks due to incubation periods (i.e., viable mold testing).
How accurate is mold testing?
Mold testing can be exceptionally accurate under the right conditions. These conditions include:
- The experience of the indoor environmental professional
- The state of the sampling medium & calibration of the sampling equipment
- The type of test being performed (i.e., surface vs. air)
- The type of analytical data being requested
- The state of the indoor environment at the time of the assessment (i.e., active construction dust, or moisture issues may affect the results).
How much does mold testing cost?
Costs for mold testing can vary and is often determined on a case by case basis, depending on the needs of the client. Here are some examples of variables that can affect mold testing costs:
- The type of mold test being performed
- The amount of samples being collected at the time of the assessment
- The requested turnaround time for laboratory results (rush fees charged by the laboratory can greatly inflate the price)
- Other fees associated with the company or indoor environmental consultant’s time, travel or administrative fees
Typically, mold testing costs can start as low as $50 to $100 per sample.