Elite Mold Services knows that your property is typically your most valuable asset. We treat all our jobs like they were our own. We will have respect for your property and provide honest and reliable recommendations for your best course of action in addressing your mold or indoor air quality issue.
A mold inspection or mold assessment is the first and most important tool in detecting hidden mold issues or conditions, such as previous or current moisture issues, that could be leading to hidden mold growth. Many times, there are water intrusion issues occurring that are hidden from view & can only be detected with special equipment. Elite Mold Services can provide a complete visual inspection of the premises to determine if there are conditions that could be leading to microbial growth. We check all walls for hidden moisture, take temperature & humidity readings throughout the property, pay close attention to the rooms with plumbing such as; bathrooms, kitchens & laundry rooms, along with checking the HVAC system (air handler & ductwork) for visible mold growth. This will help us determine the issue(s) occurring in order to determine the next steps for resolving the problem.
Our Complete Mold Inspection Process:
- A thorough visual inspection of the property
- Certified Mold Inspector performs all inspections
- Check all common locations for mold growth
- A thermal imaging infrared scan provided for mold inspections
- Radio-wave moisture intrusion survey
- Check attic, when appropriate, for water damage and/or mold growth
- Evaluate HVAC system; blower fan, air handler, coils, ductwork
- Digital photos taken of all problem areas
- Suggestions for mold testing made after inspection
- Digital mold assessment report for documentation of the issues
- Mold remediation protocol can be written for project
After conclusion of our visual mold and moisture inspection, we can then make suggestions based on our findings and usually recommend sampling or a remediation procedure. All inspections include digital photos of problem areas as well as a computer-generated report.
Orlando Area Mold Inspections and Testing Experts
There are many different mold & indoor air quality services we are proud to offer the Orlando Florida & Central Florida areas. Almost all mold testing is performed after a thorough mold inspection. This will help identify hidden mold problems, find visible mold growth, locate "musty" odors or find hidden moisture or leaks.
Our certified mold inspectors will perform a visual inspection on your home using the latest moisture detecting equipment to help identify possible areas where mold could be hiding.
Elite Mold Testing Services:
Whole House Air Sampling
This is a more inclusive type of test that will let you know what is in the air you are breathing. All air samples will be completed using Zefon spore trap cassettes (Air-O-Cell) to ensure the most reliable results. TheAir-O-Cell is designed for the rapid collection of a wide range of airborne aerosols including mold spores, pollen, insect parts, skin cells, fibers and inorganic particulate.
The home’s air is drawn through the spore trap cassette using a self-contained IAQ pump and then all biological particles are impacted on to the slides surface. The standard for all of our tests are a minimum of 2 samples inside and 1 sample outside (to have a baseline for comparison). These cassettes are then sent to the lab for analysis. The reports will show the type of mold and the amount of mold in the air (per cubic meter).
Elite Mold Services can even perform “Behind-the-wall” air samples that will confirm if hidden mold growth exists in the cavity space behind the surface of the wall
Swab Sampling or Lift Sampling
This is a specific type of test performed when there is visible mold growth. We use a wetted swab or Bio-Tape to lift the growth off the surface and then seal it in a specialized container. This will then be forwarded to an AIHA accredited laboratory for analysis. The report will include the spore name and the description.
This test is useful in confirming type of mold that is present (allergenic, toxic or pathogenic). This test can also be used in conjunction with air sampling to determine if the suspected mold growth has become airborne.
Carpet sampling can be a useful tool to help get a “history” of the mold levels & types found inside a home. If there was an active mold problem and the mold spores became airborne, they will settle into the carpet pile. The carpet is then vacuumed with a special mold/dust collector nozzle which can then be analyzed for mold spore counts.
There are 3 types of analysis:
- Direct ID with a microscope – Genus level only
- Culture sample – Genus & Species of viable spores only
- ERMI mold testing – Genus & Species level of all cells found
What is the ERMI?
The ERMI is an scronym for Environmental Relative Moldiness Index. It was developed by scientists at the USEPA to provide a straightforward, objective, and standardized way to obtain results for indoor air quality investigations.
- The EPA is developing an ERMI ranking system based on dust samples collected from homes across the U.S.
- The ERMI will help predict the moldiness of homes. Homes with high.ERMI values have a greater chance of having a mold problem then homes with a low ERMI.
- 36 different fungi make up the ERMI and are designed as Group I (those found in a typical, water damaged home) and Group II (those commonly found in all homes)
What is ARMI?
The ARMI is an acronym for American Relative Moldiness Index. It was developed by EPA as a more cost effective analytical method than the ERMI. It has been proven by EPA to have good correlation with the ERMI for predicting the moldiness of homes. 13 different fungi make up the ARMI and are designated a group 1 (found in typical, water damages homes) and group 2 (commonly found in all homes). The fungi for the ARMI are bold faced below.
Stachybotrys chartarum, Chaetomium globosum, Cladosporium sphaerospermum, Aspergillus versicolor, Eurotium (A.) amstalodami, Penicillium variabile, Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus restrictus, Penicillium crustosum, Penicillium purpurogenum, Aspergillus fumigatus, Penicillium corylophilum, Aureobasidium pullulans, Aspergillus ochraceus, Penicillium brevicompactum, Paecilomyces variotii, Aspergillus sydowii, Penicillium spinulosum, Wallemia sebi, Aspergillus unguis, Scopulariopsis brevicaulis, Scopulariopsis chartarum, Aspergillus penicillioides, Trichoderma viride
Acremonium strictum, Alternaria alternata , Aspergillus ustus, Cladosporium cladosporioides v1, Cladosporium cladosporioides v2, Cladosporium herbarum, Epicoccum nigrum, Mucor & Rhizopus group, Penicillium chrysogenum, Rhizopus stolonifer
What is the MSQPCR
MSQPCR is an acronym for Mold Specific Quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction. The ERMI value is determined using the MSQPCR method in the lab.
- It was developed by scientists at the USEPA to detect and quantify fungi associated with indoor air quality problems.
- It’s a FAST, ACCURATE, and SENSITIVE DNA-based analytical method for identifying and quantifying molds to the species level.
- The method looks for the presence of DNA sequences that are unique to a particular mold species.
Mold Remediation Supervision
Our company does not provide mold remediation so when you hire us, you receive unbiased opinions regarding the problem at hand. Some companies have been providing the initial consultation, the remediation & the clearance testing. This presents a serious conflict-of-interest & should never happen. Call Elite Mold Services as the first step in identifying the problem so you know what steps will be needed to correct them. We have worked in the Central Florida area for years and can provide references to Mold Remediation Contractors in the area that can provide estimates for the mold clean-up. NEVER have a company provide the initial assessment/testing & the remediation. Not only is it against the law but it is unethical.
Although we do not provide mold remediation, we do provide Mold Remediation Protocols to ensure that the remediation company hired to carry out the clean-up work is working safely, performing a comprehensive remediation & ensuring mold spores are not spread to other parts of the house. The remediation job is then followed by a "clearance" or Post-Remediation Verification Inspection & Testing to ensure that all of the mold spores have been removed from the affected area prior the removal of the containment barrier.
Mold Remediation is a process where an existing mold problem is removed or cleaned up from a residential or commercial property. The goal of remediation is to remove or clean contaminated materials in a way that prevents the emission of fungi and dust contaminated with fungi from leaving a work area and entering an occupied or non-abatement area, while protecting the health of workers performing the abatement. Listed below are some general methods that can be used during a mold remediation procedure.
Cleanup & Removal Methods
The purpose of the clean-up process is to eliminate the mold and fungal growth and to remove contaminated materials. As a general rule, simply killing the mold with a biocide is not enough. The mold must be removed since the chemicals and proteins, which cause a reaction in humans, are still present even in dead mold.
This method is used for preventing mold spores from spreading into other parts of the property. When the mold is disturbed the spores can become airborne and migrate to other areas. Plastic sheeting is used to contain the mold in the designated area. Special negative-air pressure machines are implemented to keep the air pressure from pushing spores out of the containment. The contained area is where all the work takes place & needs to be properly cleaned prior to removal of the barrier. Special testing known as clearance or post-remediation verification testing is used to ensure the air & surfaces are free of abnormal levels of mold prior to containment being completed.
Wet vacuum cleaners are designed to remove water from floors, carpets and other hard surfaces where water has accumulated. Wet vacuuming should only be used on wet materials, as spores may be exhausted into the indoor environment if insufficient liquid is present. After use this equipment must be thoroughly cleaned and dried as spores can adhere to the inner surfaces of the tank, hoses, and other attachments.
Damp wipe is the removal of mold from non-porous surfaces by wiping or scrubbing with water and a detergent. Care must be exercised to make sure the material is allowed to quickly dry to discourage any further mold growth. With surfaces such as metal, glass, hardwood, plastics, and concrete, mold should be scraped off as much as possible. Then, scrub the surface with a fungicide cleaner.
High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filtered vacuum cleaners are used in the final cleanup of remediation areas after materials have been thoroughly dried and all contaminated materials have been removed. HEPA vacuum cleaners are recommended for the cleanup of the outside areas surrounding the remediation area. During this process the workers wear proper personal protective equipment (PPE) to prevent exposure to mold and other contaminants. The collected debris and dust should be stored in impervious bags or containers in a manner to prevent any release of debris.
Disposal of Debris & Damaged Materials
Building materials and furnishings contaminated with mold should be placed into impervious bags or closed containers while in the remediation area. These materials can usually be discarded as regular construction waste.
Post-Remediation Verification Inspections
We follow the ANSI/IICRC-approved S520 Professional Guide for Mold Remediation which defines a successful remediation as reaching a Condition 1 status (normal fungal ecology). Our PRV evaluations typically follow these guidelines in determining if the remediation project is complete:
Step 1: Perform a visual inspection for remaining mold and moisture issues.
Step 2: Moisture readings are collected in various locations within the remediated areas to ensure all remaining building materials have been dried to an acceptable level.
Step 3: A thermal imagining scan of the walls, ceilings and floors is performed to check for hidden moisture issues.
Step 4: A smell test is also used to help ensure the environment is clean and free of malodors.
Step 5: If these prior steps are acceptable, we will collect air mold samples and possibly surface mold samples to ensure the environment is clean at the microscopic level.
Step 6: The samples are sent to an AIHA-approved laboratory for analysis. Typically, results are available the next day. Same day rush sample turn arounds are available for additional fees. We look for qualitatively and quantitatively similar indoor air samples as the outdoor air. Surface samples should show minimal spore levels with no toxic mold or pathogenic molds being present.
Step 7: A final report is issued outlining our findings and any recommendations. If all criteria are met, reconstruction may begin.