The presence of molds inside an enclosure may greatly affect the air quality inside the enclosed space in the sense that molds, that are of airborne spore species, are a common allergen and may induce sneezing, runny nose, cough, eye irritation, upper respiratory irritation, and, in severe reactions, asthma attack, to people who are likely allergic to molds. When there is mold growth inside a building, it is an indication of a water problem, which could mean that there is excessive water leaking somewhere in the building of which when it produces a damp condition can richly invite for mold growth. Another adverse effect of mold presence inside a building establishment is that they can cause structural damage by decomposing wood and porous materials, drywalls, and even carpeting.
As part of a maintenance procedure in a building structure, mold inspection should be regularly performed, to meet up on the following objectives: test for mold growth in the establishment; locate the mold population when there is a positive test result of their existence; identify their specie; and conduct a post-inspection after a remedial action has been performed to eliminate the mold presence.
Mold inspection observes these five steps: interview of occupants or building maintenance caretaker, visual inspection, sampling, sampling analysis, and reporting.
A mold inspector will usually conduct first an interview to get as much information needed for him to conduct his next step of inspection and the information that he will most likely ask are about the humidity condition inside the building, whether there has been a leaking problem existing in the roof or plumbing fixtures, have the occupants smell some kind of moldy odor, or has there been a detected mold population growth inside the structure.
When the inspector receives a positive reporting from the owner or caretaker of mold presence, he performs a visual inspection into the spot areas where there is likely water penetration or evidence of a mold habitat existing, using tools like moisture meters for detecting moisture, hydrometers for measuring the humidity, borescopes for viewing sections of walls, or laser thermometers for checking on the surface temperatures, as well as digital photographs, if the mold presence is detected.
The mold inspector proceeds with the third step of taking air samples, outside and inside the building, using a special air collector device that has the design of specifically collecting airborne mold spores and which can, at the same time, provide conclusive results of the spore counts, giving the inspector an idea if the air quality inside the building is of health risk or not.
A special laboratory analyst handles the given air samples by determining the number of mold spores present per cubic meter of air and, at the same time, analysing the kind of mold specie found in the building.
The summary report of the mold inspector constitutes the visual proof of mold presence, spore level in the air in the building, mold specie present, conclusions and recommendations in maintaining the building condition, as well as measures to remove the presence of molds.