How to Choose a Mold Testing Company

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Molds, including black mold, can cause a variety of ailments, from upper respiratory infections to allergies. Depending on the type, mold can produce musty odors. In some cases, the human eye doesn't see the problem, and when it does, it can be difficult to determine the type of mold. If you suspect mold in your home or office, you may want to use a mold testing company.

Choose a Company That Provides Mold Testing Kits

  • Consider whether you want to work with a company that sells mold testing kits. With these kits, available at most home improvement stores, you follow the directions included from the manufacturer and then mail your kit to its mold testing lab.

  • Evaluate the types of tests a company offers. Some use tests analyze only one substance at a time, which means you need one test per substance. Others test all airborne substances at once. You may prefer to work with a company offering a variety of tests, so you can pick the option that bests fits your situation.

  • Avoid hidden fees. Some tests are free, but you have to pay shipping, handling and laboratory fees. Others are more expensive but include the total cost. You may want to choose a mold testing company that clearly outlines the costs involved and breaks it down by the cost of the kit, the cost for shipping and the cost for the lab work.

  • Think about the time frame for receiving your test results. Some companies offer a fast turnaround time. Other companies hold the sample and check it at regular intervals, usually at 24 hours, 48 hours and 64 hours, before sending results. This can give the sample time to develop, providing more accurate results.

  • Request a sample report. Choose a mold testing company that provides you with test results you can understand without researching biological names.

Hire a Mold Testing Company to Perform the Tests

  • Determine whether you might prefer to have a mold testing company come into your home or office to test for the mold. This can reduce error caused by incorrect collection methods.

  • Consider the type of testing performed by the company. Some companies have the equipment and technology to test for a variety of things from mold to bacteria to allergens. Others only test for mold. While it can cost more to hire a company, you often get a more comprehensive test of your indoor environment.

  • Find out what collection methods the testing company uses. If a professional only scrapes the mold and sends it off to the lab, you could have done this on your own with a mold testing kit.

  • Compare the cost of hiring mold testing company to the service offered. Ask what the price includes to ensure it covers the cost of lab work and any shipping or handling necessary to get the results. You may prefer to pay more for a company with better qualifications, recommendations or testing methods.

  • Evaluate the qualifications of the professional. Mold is often the result of a bigger issue, which means you may need a company that can identify the broader problem. Companies with experience in building construction, biology or HVAC systems may be able to help you solve the problem rather than simply identifying it.

  • Decide whether you want to hire a company that also performs mold removal. Sometimes you can get a discount on the second service, but you may want a second opinion before you pay for cleanup.

  • Ask for recommendations. When you pay the extra money to have a company test for mold, you want to ensure you've spent it on a reputable one. Recommendations from friends or family carry more weight in your decision process than client testimonials provided by the company.

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