IAQ - Mold

Midwest Chemical Safety uses methods and techniques established by the American Industrial Hygiene Association to evaluate and develop an opinion concerning mold and fungi in a commercial building or residence. Currently, there is a lack of agreement on the interpretation of highly variable data concerning viable and non-viable mold data. Opinions are subject to the local conditions at the site, professional judgment and subjective assessment of the overall indoor air quality. Initially a walk-through evaluation is performed to attempt to identify potential sources of fungal amplification. In order to thrive, molds and other fungi need a source of moisture, carbon (like paper or wood) and the proper temperature. Area of poor air circulation (ventilation) and high moisture are likely sources for fungal amplification. MCS will be looking for visible fungal growth, water damage, poor housekeeping, poor ventilation and temperature control, and inadequate ventilation filtration.

Sampling may be recommended especially if visible fungal infestation is present. Samples may be bulk samples or air samples taken in accordance AIHA recommended practices and may include viable and non-viable samples. Samples will be analyzed in a certified microbiological laboratory. For viable mold sampling, the major species will be identified and results will be reported in viable spores per cubic meter of air. In all cases of air sampling, one or more samples will be taken outdoors and the results compared to indoor results to develop a conclusion regarding amplification.

Presently, there are no strict numerical exposure guidelines for mold. Establishing a direct link between mold exposure and the results of an allergy test is often very difficult. Often, the best approach is to remove the person from the affected area.

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