Here at the Twin Home Mold Experts, we perform about 35 mold inspections & testing here in Los Angeles per week.
One of the questions we get asked often is “What is the mold inspection process?”
But, before we get into that, we’re going to answer some other frequent questions we get often and cover some facts about mold in preparation for your mold inspection.
What is the first step? – Reya, Pacific Palisades
The first step after discovering you have mold or if you think there is mold is to determine whether it is dangerous, and if so, the level of danger.
Twin Fact: There are over 400,000 different kinds of mold known to man, yet of those, only about a dozen are toxic.
Seeking the right Los Angeles mold inspector is the next step in the process.
Can you find out exactly what kind of mold I have and whether or not my health is in danger? – Eric, Santa Monica
Yes, this can be accomplished, but there is no reliable way to identify mold and the dangers it poses, just based on its color and appearance alone. It is not advised to identify mold by simply looking at it, although it’s pretty evident particularly if there is moisture, testing it is a true way to identify the species & toxicity levels.
Depending on various situations, mold color and the structure can vary drastically.
These conditions, such as the nature of the organic material mold grows on, like drywall or wood, environment, temperature, and presence of direct light, such as crawl spaces, attics &
under sinks can all affect the way your mold contamination looks.
Due to the hidden nature of mold, the visible part of mold is just the tip of the iceberg as mold prefers to grow behind the wet walls and under wet flooring and carpeting.
Only a professional Los Angeles mold inspector can tell where and how much moisture is hidden in your building structure by using thermal imaging equipment and or moisture reader devices. We truly take pride in our expertise as we have plumbing licenses and we are considered a Los Angeles water intrusion expert.
If area moisture levels have been high for a prolonged period of time, there is a good chance of mold presence.
Look under this bathroom sink full of mold.
Determining if you Need Professional Mold Remediation Services
When you realize that visible mold is in your home or building, or you are aware of signs that mold might be growing in parts of your property that you cannot see, then its time to seek the help of a professional mold remediation inspector.
To be sure, not all molds that exist in homes are toxic, but it is always better to hire a professional mold inspector who can help you determine exactly what kind of mold you are dealing with and how to remedy the moisture and/or mold problem.
The Twins Moisture and Mold Prevention Steps
There are a number of things that you can do on your own in order to help prevent moisture and mold from becoming a major problem in your home.
First, it is important to take steps to prevent humidity and condensation in the home.
This would mean ensuring that the home is properly ventilated and insulated. For example, we see so often that bathroom ventilation is not sufficient.
Any time there is a water leak, make sure to act quickly and dry all the materials before mold has the chance to grow.
Additionally, you can help prevent mold growth by paying attention to the outside of your property, cleaning and repairing roof gutters as needed, and ensuring that the foundation of the home is well maintained.
Check this video outside the home during our leak detection & mold inspection for our customer Nick.
Mold Inspection Process In Los Angeles
When your professional mold inspector arrives at your property, in order to begin the inspection, he will use an assortment of methods, including visual inspection, thermal imaging, surface sampling, and air sampling in order to determine the source and the type of mold that is present in the building.
Each time a mold inspector visits a property they will begin the process with a visual inspection and ask the proper questions.
They will check the property and look for any suspect signs of water damage, water intrusion, possible faucet or pipe leaks, and any other signs of moisture.
They will also test the temperature and the humidity on the property, and add these calculations to a wide variety of data that they will be obtaining about your home or property.
Then the testing begins……
When a professional mold inspector begins the surface sampling process, they are actually attempting to determine what kind of mold exists at a particular location within the property. The inspector may use a swab, tape lift & air sample or combination of both, to grab the mold.
Twin tip: Prior to any mold inspection, have property or suspect rooms completely closed from any outside air. So make sure doors & windows are closed at least 2 hours prior to inspection.
How to pass a mold inspection? – Gina, Simi Valley
Passing a mold inspection depends on a few factors:
- Initial inspection and test and the results returned with no signs of mold contamination.
- Air sample completed and the outside ( which is the baseline ) is higher than outside, that’s considered a pass.
- Swab or tape lift and the treatment was done to those areas, and it returns from the lab as (not detected) that’s considered a pass
A pass is also when materials are completely dry.
Does the mold inspection process also tell if I have health issues? – Veronica, Glendale
We get asked quite often about potential health issues people are having when it comes to mold contamination.
We are not mold medical doctors. We can provide resources, but never diagnose one’s health symptoms.
How long does the mold inspection process take from start to completion? – Myra, Long Beach
The time it takes for mold inspections depends on what’s being inspected. If it is the whole house being inspected, it can take 2-4 hours. If it is just one or two rooms, it can take up to an hour.
The mold lab samples take 24-72 hours for them to return.
From start to finish, it can take up to three days with a full written report.
I’m buying a home, can’t the general home inspector perform the mold inspection process? – John, Chatsworth
When you’re buying a new home, a general home inspector will make notes on his or her report if it appears to be any type of mold growth.
They will take photos of the suspect areas and refer it to a mold specialist.
What is the cost of the mold inspection process in Los Angeles? – Linda, Santa Clarita
The cost for mold inspections varies from just a visible mold inspection to whole house or property, to crawl space and attics, a number of mold air samples, tape lifts and swab samples.
These costs can range here in Los Angeles from $225 up to $2,500.
Is my landlord responsible to pay for a mold inspection in my apartment? – Cindy, Pasadena
When it comes to tenants and landlords, we get calls all the time from renters that found mold in the apartment and suspect mold or see visible mold growth. You need to notify your landlord immediately with a certified letter, this ways it’s documented properly.
If the landlord fails to respond, then most of our renters will hire a mold inspection to verify and deduct off next month’s rent.
Most of the time, landlords respond right away.
Just check your rental agreement and we always recommend renters insurance.
I’m getting ready to sell my house. Should I get a mold inspection first? – Mary, Winnetka
This is a great question, and we strongly believe you should – particularly if you’d had leaks in the past.
We are seeing more buyers today than ever before take advantage of mold testing then using that as a huge negotiating tool to lower the sales price.
Does the mold inspection process also detect other contamination like asbestos, lead, radon? – Tina, Northridge
A mold inspection will only focus on mold.
When it comes to other hazardous items like asbestos, then a certified asbestos inspector will provide that service.
When it comes to the mold inspection process, whomever you hire, they will cover their processes by asking you questions and they should clearly define what they recommend as well as go over all other details such as costs, recommendations and how quickly they will give you the report.