The air quality inside a residential or commercial building may be greatly affected when there is a detected mold environment growing inside, especially when the molds are of the airborne species, as they are a common source of allergen and can be the primary cause of health problems for the building residents, such as sneezing, runny nose, cough, eye irritation, upper respiratory irritation, and, in serious condition, asthma attack. When there is mold growth inside a building, it is an indication of a water problem, which could mean that there is excessive water leaking somewhere in the building of which when it produces a damp condition can richly invite for mold growth. Another adverse effect of mold presence inside a building establishment is that they can cause structural damage by decomposing wood and porous materials, drywalls, and even carpeting.
The purposes of conducting a mold inspection are the following: testing for the presence of molds inside an establishment; when there is a positive presence, identifying the mold species; locating where the molds are growing inside the establishment; and, when remedial action has been done to remove the molds, a post-inspection is performed to assess if the molds have been completely eliminated.
A mold inspector carries these 5 important steps when he conducts an inspection to a building establishment: interview with the owner or maintenance caretaker; conduct an ocular inspection; take samples; have the samples be analysed; and make the necessary report.
Common issues inquired through the interview by the mold inspector are on these topics: humidity inside the building, mold smell, any possible roof or plumbing leaks, or detected mold presence inside the building.
When the inspector receives a positive reporting from the owner or caretaker of mold presence, he performs a visual inspection into the spot areas where there is likely water penetration or evidence of a mold habitat existing, using tools like moisture meters for detecting moisture, hydrometers for measuring the humidity, borescopes for viewing sections of walls, or laser thermometers for checking on the surface temperatures, as well as digital photographs, if the mold presence is detected.
Most important in the course of the inspection is taking air samples, outdoor and indoor, using a special sampling device that can collect mold spores of which the amount of spores collected will determine if air quality inside the building has been greatly affected.
A special laboratory analyst handles the given air samples by determining the number of mold spores present per cubic meter of air and, at the same time, analysing the kind of mold specie found in the building.
The last segment in the mold inspection is a documented summary report which consists of the following: photos of the mold presence and its specific locations, population level of mold spores in the air inside the building, the specific mold found, the inspector’s conclusions and strong recommendations in stepping up measures to prevent mold growth, as well as its elimination.