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Mold Testing and Mold Inspection

Asbestos Testing and Asbestos Inspection

Our Services for Mold

Our services include a visual inspection, with the use of moisture detection and thermal imaging along with the use of psychrometrics of the outdoor and indoor complaint areas. Not only for existing conditions, but also for preventive maintenance as to stop mold growth before it can start.  We provide air testing to evaluate the air your breathing for molds and other allergens. Toxic molds grow in very wet areas so do not aerosolize easily unless disturbed so swab sampling can provide information as to whether visible mold is toxic. We can also perform an in-wall air sample to check for hidden mold behind your walls. We will take 3 samples at a minimum per protocol: 1 outdoor air sample used as a control sample, and 2 indoors. All samples are shipped to a certified AIHA (American Industrial Hygiene Association) laboratory. The lab will email us the results, we will interpret them and along with our inspection, write a report of our findings and recommendations of how to proceed safely. We will also include a report from the lab describing the organisms found along with the health effects associated with that particular organism. Mold is found in every home all year round. It is a conflict of interest for remediation companies to perform testing and interpretation of results and to provide recommendations. Some of our clients include Governor Hogan, the Maryland State General Assembly, Property management companies, Insurance companies, remediation companies, and homeowners just to name a few.

Just because you may see mold does not necessarily mean its air borne and if you do not visibly see mold that does not necessarily mean that it is not hidden behind building material. The mycotoxins mold produce can cause health effects. With our mold inspection and testing we will provide the proper recommendations to correct these issues. Sometimes the air in the home can cause mold issues. We will also diagnose those issues during our inspection.

As discussed if you want your air quality diagnosed correctly you should look toward a company that does not provide remediation. Testing can be altered if not done correctly. Do you want your contractor to ok their own work? Thats why there are inspectors to verify the contractors work and test properly to ensure the work was done correctly. For a remediation company to certify their work is like having a kid grading their own test. You want a independent third party testing company to provide the proper testing to ensure the work done was successful.

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Health Effects

People who are most effected are people with allergies, low immune systems, chemo patients, asthmatics, children, the elderly, and pregnant women. At higher levels of mold even people with normal immune systems are still at risk. It is just at what levels of mold, will make them sick, only your physician can answer health questions related to your immune system. There are no threshold limits for mold, so typically the concentrations indoors should be similar to the outdoors for a healthy home.  Mold enters the body in 3 different ways: through the skin if you touch it, ingestion if you eat it, and inhalation.  Inhalation being the most prevalent. Mold can cause numerous reactions including but not limited to cough, sneezing, headaches, pinkeye, itchy watery red eyes, skin rashes, and difficulty breathing, just to name a few.

Remediation

Mold is a living micro-organism and can be very easily dispersed throughout the home. Think of blowing over a dandelion and watching them spread. The same reaction can happen when mold is handled improperly. A homeowner trying to properly remove mold NEVER passes clearance testing, can enter the HVAC system and spread throughout your home or business. A professional should test for the problem and instigate a protocol for clean up or remediation. It is stated by the IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification -This is the  standard for professional mold remediation and the manual for which most remediation companies are certified) that an independent 3rd party should do the testing and recommend how to clean up, remediate if necessary and prescribe recommendations to fix the source of moisture. If the company you hired is certified by the IICRC then they know they should not provide their own testing and protocol. If they do not follow the proper IICRC protocols then what else are they not doing correctly? Having an unbiased and independent 3rd party can save you thousands in cleaning it up. It is a conflict of interest for a testing company to do remediation.  If  remediation is being performed, be sure it is done by professionals to prevent cross contamination throughout the rest of the residence. Mold is not a stain on your wall, it is a fungus, spreads very easily and should be taken very seriously. After remediation is complete and before containment is taken down, post remediation testing is recommended to ensure the remediation was successful and the spore count is similar to outdoor levels. This is all the more reason to use an independent third party that has no affiliation to the remediation company so you know we have your best interest at heart. 

Asbestos

We all know by now the health effects of asbestos causing cancer. What most people don't know is if they have it in their home and where it could be. Rule #1 is you cannot tell if a building material has asbestos just by looking at it. If the building material was installed before 1980 than there is the possibility of asbestos. The only right way to know this is through a certified laboratory. Asbestos is fine in the home unless damaged or disturbed. When it becomes airborne is when it becomes a problem. If you plan to do any renovations in an older home, usually older than 1980, although we tested building material that was positive in 1982, have the areas tested that you plan on disturbing. The areas are not limited and you can find them in the following areas: acoustic ceiling material, taping on ductwork seams, drop ceiling tiles, window putty, textured paints and plasters, drywall taping compounds, cement wallboard, the backing of linoleum flooring or tile, vinyl floor tile, adhesives, sprayed on fire proofing, silver roofing paint, asphalt roofing material and underlayment, transite shingles and siding, ductwork insulation, electric wiring, and vermiculite- usually used in attics- looks like kitty litter. The use of asbestos has just been recently completely banned from all products.

We, and any certified testing company, should always take a minimum of 3 samples of any building material, depending on square footage may be more. If you hire someone that doesn't take the minimum of 3 samples. they are not following EPA protocols, be aware. This is a red flag. If a contractor says they will take the samples, ask for certification. Uncertified personnel taking samples can be fined to over $41,000 per day.

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