A Mold Investigation Can Identify If Your Building Has Mold That Could Cause A Variety Of Health Issues.
At Pacific West Home Inspections, you will receive the following professional service and more:
- Certified By The International Association Of Indoor Air Consultants.
- Provide A Complete Detailed On-Site Visual Assessment Survey Of The Building.
- Provide Air Sampling And Forward Samples To Be Tested At An Accredited Lab.
- Provide A Detailed Narrative Report With Photos Along With Lab Results.
- Fully Explain The Details Of The Report And Answer All Your Questions.
- Provide You With Recommendations For Remedial Action If Needed.
Mold contamination can be a serious issue and Dave Brice at Pacific West Home Inspections can help you develop an understanding of how to restore your property to a safe and healthy condition.
To Book Your Inspection Or For More Information,
Call (250) 833-8955
Mold Investigation & Air Testing
Since there has been so much media hype surrounding mold, prospective home buyers want a home that has been mold inspected specially if there is any indications or not of a past Grow-Op. Air sampling for mold is becoming a standard practice during a home inspection. You should not buy a home with mold, sell a home with mold or live in a home with mold. A mold inspection is you first line of defense! To find out if mold is a problem in you home, you must have a mold inspection conducted by your inspector at Pacific West Home Inspections.
A visual inspection is the initial step in identifying possible contamination problems. It will identify any visible water leaks or moisture stains on ceilings, walls, floors or under counters. The air conditioning and heating systems, the attic and crawl space under the home will receive a visual inspection as well. The use of equipment such as a baroscopic to view spaces in ductwork or behind walls and moisture meters are used to help identify hidden sources of mold growth and the extent of the water damage. Air sampling for mold will be recommended if there is any noticeable or evidence of mold growth, musty odors, visible water damage or stains, poorly maintained HVAC systems or construction defects. By combining a visual inspection with air, tape or swab sampling, the inspector can help identify the hidden source of mold, allergens and indoor pollutants and the extent of any acute or chronic water or moisture damage.
The purpose of air sampling is to determine the type and amount of elevated airborne contamination in a building. Air sampling may be necessary if the presence of mold, allergens or toxins is suspected (e.g.: musty odors, allergies) but cannot be identified by a visual inspection. When air sampling is performed, both the indoor air and outdoor air are sampled, so the results can be compared to see if a problem exists. Typically, the indoor sample is taken while the heating and/or air conditioning unit is operating. This will insure the interior air is effectively tested.
Tape/swab samples are usually collected from visible moldy surfaces by wiping the area with a sterile swab. This type of sampling is used to identify specific mold types.
Recommendations And Laboratory Results:
Once the home has a visual inspection and the mold circumstance evaluated, action can be planned to clean it up and prevent future contamination. Based upon site evaluations and sampling lab analysis results, Pacific West Home Inspections will provide a detailed written report that can be used for disclosure and references. In all situations, if mold exists, the underlaying cause of the water damage must be corrected.
Mold…literally, a growing concern. National media attention has alerted the public to the destructive and possibly toxic dangers of hidden mold spores that could effect their family’s health and their homes. EPA studies indicate that air levels of indoor pollutants may be two to three times higher then outdoor levels. Mold, the most dangerous offender of all, often goes undetected because of its invisibility. Most people spend as much as 90% of their time indoors and are not aware of the health hazards created by this pollutant. You owe it to yourself to minimize your exposure to mold spores in the environment, test for mold today.
How Can Someone Be Exposed To Mold?
There are several ways you can become exposed to mold:
- Breathing in the spores from the air.
- Skin contact from handling an item that has mold growing on it.
- Eating without properly washing your hands after handling moldy objects.
Can Mold Cause Health Problems?
Mold has the potential to cause health problems and even make a home uninhabitable. However, everyone is affected differently when in contact with mold. The mold that may not bother the seller may severely affect the buyer. Some mold can produce allergens, irritants and in some cases, potential toxic chemical substances known as mycotoxins. People who are sensitive and exposed to mycrotoxins can become ill. Allergic reactions to mold are common. They can be immediate or delayed. People diagnosed with allergies and asthma may be very sensitive to mold. mold can cause asthma attacks. Others at risk may include: infants, children, the elderly, immune compromised patients, pregnant women and individuals with existing respiratory conditions.
With exposure, even in small amounts, mold may cause:
- Itching or irritation of the nose, eyes, throat or skin.
- Mysterious skin rashes.
- Sinus infections or congestion/sinusitis (runny nose).
- Respiratory problems (sneezing and coughing).
- Upper or lower respiratory problems.
- Frequent headaches.
- Trouble concentrating, memory lapses, confusion.
- Mood swings, anxiety. depression.
- Chronic aches and pains.
- Digestive problems.
Where Is Mold Found In The Home?
Mold can be found in several areas in the home environment. It appears most often in moist areas as little black circles or thread-like objects. It is usually accompanied with a musty-type odor. Outdoors, mold plays a natural part in the environment by breaking down dead organic matter such as dead trees or fallen leaves. Mold reproduces by means of microscopic spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through the indoor and outdoor air. Mold begins to grow indoors when mold spores land on surfaces that are wet or damp. Mold will not grow without water or moisture. Therefore, it is important to dry water-damaged areas and items within 24-48 hours to prevent mold growth.
Some examples of places where mold can be found inside the home include:
- Basements, kitchens (bottom of fridge area), around the bathroom vanities, toilet, washer/dryer area.
- The underside of carpet and pads.
- The surface of walls behind furniture (where condensation forms).
- Ceilings and the top side of ceiling tiles.
- Front and backside of dry wall board, wall paper or paneling.
- Inside HVAC systems and duct work.
How Can I Reduce Or Eliminate Mold Inside My Home?
It is impossible to completely eliminate mold and mold spores indoors. Mold will always be found floating in the air and in the house dust. Indoor mold growth can be prevented by controlling water and moisture indoors. The following may prevent or reduce indoor mold growth:
- Repair any water leaks.
- Provide good air circulation.
- All HVAC systems should have a good electrostatic filter on the return.
- Use bathroom, kitchen and laundry room exhaust fans.
- Insulate and ventilate attic and crawl space areas.
- Clean, dry or remove items that are damaged by water immediately.
Real Estate Deals Do Not Need To Be Broken:
If the home your thinking about purchasing has mold, suspect to have mold or even suspect to have been a past Grow-Op, do not panic! You can remove unusual mold levels from the home and bring it back to the original condition.
Note: If there is mold growth in your home, you must clean up the mold and fix the water problem. If you clean the mold, but do not fix the water problem, the mold will grow back.
The most important part after the remediation (Clean Up Process) process is the clearance testing performed by Pacific West Home Inspections. This final testing procedure provides confirmation that the project has been satisfactorily remediated and that the contamination has not spread to other areas.