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Mold Inspection Guide: Prevention, Cost, and More

Written by Chris Gennone

Published on August 4, 2022


Mold Inspection Guide: Prevention, Cost, and More

Mold inspections are crucial in keeping your home and family safe. Learn if a mold inspection is required for your home today.

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Mold isn’t just harmful to the foundation of your home – it can also cause a variety of health problems. If there’s visible mold in your home, it’s crucial that you hire a certified mold inspector. While acting as quickly as possible is key, we recommend having your home inspected before opting for total mold remediation so you know exactly what you’re dealing with and avoid unnecessary costs.

Let’s dig into the details of when you should inspect your home for mold, the inspection process, and more.

Hire a local pro for your mold inspection

When to inspect your home for mold

Image source: Medical News Today

Luckily, mold growth is fairly easy to notice. If you see mold in cracks and corners of your home, it’ll likely spread rapidly, between 24 and 48 hours. It’s also important to understand that mold can be present in areas that you can’t see, like HVAC systems and crawl spaces. If you can’t see it, you should opt for an inspection if there’s been recent water damage or if you can smell mildew. 

Mold inspection process

Image source: New York State

Visual inspection 

The first thing a mold inspection service is going to do is look all over your home for the presence of mold and the potential source of moisture. Home inspectors might be able to tell what types of mold are growing in your home depending on where it’s located and by its color, shape, and pattern

Surface sampling 

Next, a home inspection might include some surface sampling if mold isn’t visible. Inspectors will usually use a swab or tape sample to determine the presence of mold through lab results. According to the EPA, if the mold is visible, surface sampling may not always be necessary and may be more useful to determine if an area is thoroughly cleaned or remediated. 

Air sampling 

Inspectors will also check the indoor air quality for levels of high humidity, which can cause mold spores. There’s normally always a small level of mold in the air and on surfaces, but if you’re experiencing symptoms like consistent sneezing and coughing, it could be from higher levels of mold exposure. Air quality testing includes collecting air samples to determine if your home has high levels of mold and whether or not you need remediation. 

Remediation plan

In order to complete mold removal, you’ll need to hire a professional for remediation. Mold remediation is usually measured on several different levels pertaining to the area of mold damage that needs to be removed. Level 1 usually pertains to areas up to 10 square feet and Level 2 usually pertains to larger areas up to 30 square feet. 

The remediation process usually entails: 

  • Fixing the source of the moisture 
  • Isolating the mold 
  • Suppressing dust 
  • Removing and discarding damaged materials 
  • Cleaning and scrubbing affected areas 
  • Visual testing 
  • Drying the area with fans and dehumidifiers 
  • Replacing materials 

How much does a mold inspection cost? 

Mold inspection costs typically range from $300 to $1,000. To inspect a standard-sized 2,500-square-foot home, the cost is closer to $400. It sometimes depends on how many samples are required for mold testing in the lab and it could also depend on the type of mold that’s present. Some molds can cause allergic reactions, but some like Stachybotrys chartarum, also known as “black mold” is incredibly dangerous and toxic, and can be more expensive to remove. 

How to prevent a mold problem

Image source: Live Science 

In order to prevent any further mold growth, whether it’s located in air vents or drywall, there are several key things to keep in mind. 

Repair leaks 

Moisture is the main catalyst for mold growth in the home. Make sure to repair any leaks as soon as possible to avoid high moisture areas and mold. 

Dry areas 

If your basement floods or appliances like air conditioners and washers drip water on the floor, make sure to dry these areas right away to avoid moisture. 

Control humidity 

In addition to keeping areas of your home clean and dry, also make sure to avoid high levels of humidity in the air. Using dehumidifiers, air vents, and fans will help keep humidity and moisture down to a manageable level. 

A mold inspection can save your home and save you money

If you suspect mold is present in your home and it’s not visible, hiring professional mold testing services can help prevent a mold issue from becoming a problem. These tests should be able to determine what types of mold are present, where they’re located, and the best way to remove them. Mold growth can be incredibly harmful to your home’s foundation and materials, but also harmful to your health. Mold inspections are crucial in saving your home and saving you money from a more expensive job in the future.

Find a mold inspection service near you

Written by

Chris Gennone Author

Chris Gennone is a content specialist and video producer at Fixr.com. He has 5 years of experience writing and editing for a variety of web and print publications, currently specializing in home improvement projects such as roofing, remodeling, and repairs. When Chris isn’t writing or in front of the camera, he’s either playing with his band or tracking down the best sandwich shops.