HOUSTON MOLD INSPECTION & MOLD TESTING SERVICES BY LICENSED PROFESSIONALS
At AWA Environmental our core focus is helping you identify your potential mold problems with our highly specialized mold inspection and testing services.
Each of our certified and licensed Houston mold inspection specialists are highly experienced using the latest Mold testing technology.
AWA Environmental is the best Mold Inspection Company in the business!
We pride ourselves with providing you and your family with the safest and most comprehensive Houston mold testing, inspection services in Texas!
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Our Houston Mold Inspection Services
If you’ve been experiencing allergy-like symptoms inside your own home, it could mean there’s a much bigger problem lurking beneath the surface…
Tiny mold spores make their way into our homes everyday by attaching themselves to our clothes, pets, or even through our AC and heating vents. Ordinarily, this wouldn’t be such a big deal but when these mold spores encounter the perfect humid and damp environment- a small problem can quickly grow out of control causing an assortment of issues for the homeowner and turn into medical emergencies for people who are severely allergic to mold or that are asthmatic.
So how do you know you have a mold problem?
Signs Your House Has A Mold Problem
If you experience any of these symptoms, you might have a mold problem:
- Breathing problems like wheezing
- Watery Eyes
- Runny nose
- Red eyes
Aside from the allergy symptoms, most homeowners might be able to see or smell the presence of mold.
But that’s not all.
Here’s some other signs to look out for:
- Visible mold growth
Small mold patches may be mistaken as soot or dirt patches. Some of the most common areas you can find mold is in the corners of showers and tubs, as well as inside your window tracks. Also keep in mind that mold can come in a variety of colors, although you may be accustomed to just the white, grey, or black kind.
- You notice condensation on or around your windows
Speaking of windows, condensation that collects on your windows could also be a sign that your house has a mold problem. Condensation and humidity offer the perfect breeding ground for a mold colony, so even if you can’t visibly see any mold, make sure you eliminate whatever is causing the condensation to occur to prevent future mold problems.
- Discoloration of walls and paint
You may notice that your walls are discolored, have a warped appearance or even feel damp to the touch. While you can’t see the mold, chances are that it’s hiding just beneath the surface.
You’ve checked off one or more items on this list.
What should you do now?
The next step is to test for it.
Why and How Should I Test for It?
You might decide to test for mold for a variety of reasons including:
- You suspect your house has mold.
- You’re buying a new home or property and want to be sure that your potential new home doesn’t isn’t hiding any mold problems. Some homeowners may attempt to mask the problem by painting over the mold.
- You’re renting a home and you need proof to take legal action against your landlord.
- You’ve hired a mold remediation company and you want to make sure that the cleanup was successful.
Finally, when it comes to testing for mold, you have two options:
DIY Mold Test Kits
DIY kits sold at home improvement stores may be cheap, but they’re limited in their abilities and may not tell the entire story which could put you and your family at risk.
In fact, you might even consider them a rip off. Here’s why:
- The average user may not know where to look or how to collect a proper sample for the kit.
- The test may be inaccurate if the user misinterprets the directions or doesn’t follow the instructions for the test kit.
- These kits may confirm that you do have a mold problem, but they won’t tell you where it’s coming from or how serious it is. All of which is important if you want to eliminate mold completely from your home.
Hiring A Professional Houston Mold Inspector
Unlike a DIY mold testing kit, a professional mold inspector has the proper knowledge and training to know where and how to test for mold. A professional mold inspector will use specialized equipment to not only confirm the presence of mold, but can also identify the type, the severity of the problem, and determine where it’s coming from.
To eliminate mold, you need to be able to fix all water leaks and plumbing issues otherwise the problem will keep reoccurring.
Some other reasons you might consider hiring a mold inspector after you’ve confirmed a mold problem is to ensure that you’ve eliminated any traces of mold after you’ve finished the cleanup process or hired a professional to do it for you.
What Should You Look for In A Professional Houston Mold Inspection Company?
When hiring a professional mold inspector, keep the following checklist in mind:
- Ask if they’re licensed and or certified. Some certifications require continuing education to keep their certification. The state of Texas does allow for licensing and certifications for mold inspectors.
- Will you be getting any reports once the inspection has been completed? Verbal reports are common for less serious cases, but physical reports are more comprehensive and can give you more details such as a recommended plan of action and any suggestions on the type of remediation needed.
- Ask them how the samples are analyzed. Some companies will offer to perform the tests right out of their own mobile lab, but professionals will usually send the samples to an accredited independent lab who will analyze the results. If lab testing is performed, be sure to ask how long it will take to hear back on the results.
- Ask them how they test for mold. There’s a variety of tests that can be used to determine whether your house has mold. Ideally, you’ll pick a professional company that uses an assortment of tests instead of just one.
- Ask if they have any references you can call. This isn’t necessary, but it may make you feel more at ease knowing the opinions of local people who have hired the company or individual you’re considering.
What Should I Expect During A Mold Inspection?
If you’ve decided to hire a professional to inspect your home for mold, you might be wondering what the process looks like and what you should expect.
The process can take up to an hour but in some cases, it may take longer depending on how big your house is.
How each professional carries out an inspection may vary from professional to professional but in general, the inspection process probably will go something like this:
- They’ll ask you questions. They’ll probably ask you questions like: when did you first start to notice any signs of mold? If you’re aware of any plumbing or water leak problems? Have you seen patches of mold and if so, where? Don’t worry if you don’t know the answers to all of them- just try and answer them the best you can.
- They’ll begin with a visual inspection. This might mean walking your entire property or entering your home to look for any signs of water damage, water intrusions, or any leaks from faucets and pipes. During this process they might use moisture readers to also calculate the temperature and the humidity of certain areas of the home which can help them determine where mold is hiding. They may also take several photos of your home or more specifically of the problem areas- so don’t be alarmed if you see them taking pictures.
- They’ll begin the surface sampling process. The goal of this test is to determine the type of mold that your house has. This is important since some species of mold like Black Mold (Stachybotrys) is extremely hazardous to our health and requires specialized handling to eliminate it. During the sampling process, the inspector may use cotton swabs or a specialized type of tape to obtain the proper samples to be sent into the lab. As soon as the sample has been collected, it’s placed in a sterile container or bag to be sent immediately to the lab. Failure to handle the samples correctly can result in incorrect results or having to repeat the same test again.
- They might perform an air sample test. Depending on the professional mold inspector, they might also use air sampling to check whether airborne mold spores are floating around in your home. This might be optional depending on your concerns and whether the mold inspector thinks it’s necessary. A variety of tools can be used to achieve this sample, but the process usually involves taking a sample of air which is then imprinted into a glass substrate to be sent to a lab.
After a mold inspection has taken place, it may take up to 24 hours to get the results back from the lab. This may depend on which type of tests were performed and how long it takes to get the samples to the testing lab.
After the test, you’ll usually receive in-depth report that will not only confirm whether your home has mold; as well as how severe the mold problem is, any special cautions or recommendations and any notes the mold inspector may want you to be aware of.
The mold inspector may need to obtain a small sample from the drywall to send in for testing. If the inspector thinks it’s necessary, they’ll request your permission before taking a sample.
After you’ve had a mold inspector out and they’ve confirmed your house has a mold problem, it’s time to hire a professional mold removal company so they can start getting your home back in order.
What Should I Look for In A Professional Mold Removal Houston Company?
When hiring a professional mold remediation company, keep the following checklist in mind:
- Ask if they’re licensed and or certified. Don’t waste your money on a mold removal company who cannot prove they’re licensed and certified.
- Are they willing to work with other service providers if the problem falls out of the area of their expertise? If there’s an issue with your ventilation system or a structure issue with your house, they should be willing to work with the appropriate professionals to help come up with a solution that works for everyone.
- Ask them about the remediation methods they use. The first step requires locating and identifying the source of the moisture problem, so it can be fixed. Once the source of the water leak has been identified, all contaminated materials are removed and/or cleansed. This process shouldn’t be taken lightly and is important to ensure that there won’t be any future problems.
- Make sure they guarantee their work. Any professional company will be willing to guarantee and stand behind their work.
Should I Hire A Company That Offers Inspections and Remediation Services?
You may be tempted to hire a mold inspection and removal company just to save time and money, but this may end up costing you more in the long run.
A mold inspector generally tests for and confirms the presence of mold. Their profits are the same regardless of how big of a mold problem your house has. A company that offers to inspect and treat your house for mold may exaggerate their claims just to fatten your bill.
How Do I Control Mold Growth in My Home?
After you’ve hired a mold inspection company and have taken the necessary steps to eliminate all water leaks and clean up the mold, what can you do to control it and keep it from happening again?
You Can Control It By:
- Managing humidity levels. This might mean purchasing a humidifier to help keep the humidity levels in your home in check.
- Immediately fixing any water leaks. Don’t ignore window, roof, or leaks from pipes. A small leak can lead to a bigger problem down the road.
- Immediately beginning the restoration process after a flood. Don’t try and clean and dry everything yourself. Doing damage control after a flood isn’t the time to skimp on hiring help. Hire a professional to do it for you so don’t have to worry about the consequences later down the road.
- Making sure your bathroom, laundry room/wet room, and kitchen are properly ventilated.
Don’t let a small problem turn into a big problem- If you suspect your home has a mold problem, give us a call today!