Air samples are collected using a special machine that sucks air through it, and over a slide treated with a special solution to collect particles from the air. The machine runs for approximately 5 minutes per sample, and then the slides are sent to the laboratory for analysis. The lab uses a specific mathematical equation to determine how many mold spores are in each cubic meter of air.
Surface samples are collected using a biotope or a completely clear/transparent tape with a glossy finish. We can also collect a bulk piece of material, or items with suspect signs of mold on them.
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Mold spores are microscopic, and fall into 3 main categories: allergenic, toxigenic, and infectious. The only way to positively confirm whether or not mold is present is to perform testing through a certified laboratory. Color, texture and/or smell are not enough to confirm a possible contamination.
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All of our inspectors are in the field working on inspections, and are not available by phone. However, all of our consultants are fully certified, and happy to answer any questions you may have.
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One of the main parts of the inspection process is the use of a digital moisture meter. With this, we can determine if there is a buildup of moisture inside of a wall cavity, or not. Mold growth can start as early as 24-48 hours after any water incident, and so it can generally be assumed that where there is moisture, there is probably mold. To verify this, we can accompany the digital moisture meter testing with an Inner Wall sample. Inner Wall samples are collected by inserting a small tube into the inner wall cavity, either through a switch/plug plate, or by drilling a small hole. Then air is collected, in much the same manner as a normal air sample, and the slide is sent to the lab for evaluation.
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Yes you can. We offer Rush service for an additional $195, which guarantees your report will be emailed to you the business day following your inspection.
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Yes, mold is a natural part of the ecosystem, and in nature mold is a natural decomposer, which means that there are always mold spores in the air. Mold spores can travel into your home/office through open windows, doors, and on your clothing. However, mold should not be growing inside of your home/office, and should not be at elevated levels in the air within your home/office. The only way to determine if you have elevated levels of mold spores in your air is through testing.
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The only way to get a completely clean result in your home/office is to have the area hermetically sealed and cleaned. There will always be low levels of mold spores in the air. The majority of our clients call us because they already suspect that there is a problem, or because they can see what they suspect to be mold, growing in their home. In these cases our testing is simply confirming or denying their suspicions, and determining whether the mold is allergenic, toxigenic, or infections. In these cases, we can offer our clients remediation recommendations, using our 5 step protocols which will ensure that removal is done safely, and with a certified technician.
We frequently have results come back that show no signs of a mold contamination within a home/office. In these cases, there would be no remediation recommended, and our services would be completed. We can, however, offer our clients periodic check-ups for their home/office, at a discounted rate, to make sure that mold does not start to grow.
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"Mold" and "mildew" are terms that are used generally to describe growths of fungi on various surfaces. "Mildew" also is a scientific term that describes a type of plant disease. In common usage, the difference between mold and mildew usually is in their appearance and the surfaces on which they are growing. Mold is often thicker and black, green, red or blue in color, and mildew usually is lighter, powdery and gray or white. Both mold and mildew often grow in moist and warm locations, but mildew is more often found in showers, on paper and on fabrics, and mold is often found on foods and in walls and other permanent structures. (Per http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-the-difference-between-mold-and-mildew.htm)
Mold can cause structural damage to homes over time and can also cause numerous health problems, including: respiratory problems, pneumonia, allergic reactions, rashes or hives, migraines, sinus infections, inflammation and pain in the joints, mental status changes (depression, forgetfulness), and extreme fatigue. Mildew can cause damage to plants and crops and can also cause health problems, including: difficulty breathing, coughing, sore throat and headaches.
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