We’d like to offer you a comprehensive review of the Pro Lab mold test kit. This is a do-it-yourself mold test, that may well meet all your mold testing needs, if you prefer to use a DIY mold test instead of having a professional come to your home to test for mold.
Now, we should start by telling you that we really recommend you hire a professional. The Pro Lab test kit for mold is a good DIY test, but professional tests are much more accurate and will give you a lot more useful information. We’ll explain more about the benefits of having a professional test your home for mold in a moment, but first we’ll tell you about this test.
The Pro Lab mold test kit offers three sampling methods. You may want to use more than one sampling method or test more than one room in your house. For all three methods, you prepare a petri dish with "mold medium" that will incubate the mold. After collecting the mold, you mail the petri dish from the Pro Lab mold test kit, carefully packaged, to a lab for analysis.
Visual Sampling – This is the simplest method of testing and it’s the one you use when you see mold growing somewhere in your home, maybe on a wall or on a window sill or on some other surface. You use a swab to wipe up some of the mold you see and wipe it across the medium in the petri dish. Both the petri dish and the swab must be sent to the lab for analysis.
HVAC (Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning) Sampling – This is the method you use when you think you might have mold in your HVAC system. The open petri dish is taped to the air vent furthest from the main HVAC system. The system is then turned on, with the fan on high, for ten minutes. Then you allow the petri dish to incubate for 48 hours, check for mold growth, allow it to continue incubating and check it again at 72 hours and at 96 hours. If nothing has grown, there is no need to send the DIY mold test petri dish to the lab for analysis; if you see something has grown, you need to send it.
Air Sampling – This is the method you use to test for mold spores in the air anywhere other than in your HVAC system. The open petri dish is placed on a stable surface, like a table or the floor, in the room you want to test for mold. You wait for one hour, then replace the lid and allow the petri dish to incubate for 48 hours. Then you check for mold growth, allow it to continue incubating and check it again at 72 hours and at 96 hours. As when you test your HVAC system, if nothing has grown, there is no need to send the DIY mold test petri dish to the lab for analysis; if you see something has grown, you need to send it.
You can buy this DIY mold test online and from several major retailers.
If you need to test for mold in several rooms, contact a professional to inquire about prices. It may end up being more affordable to hire a professional than to test multiple rooms for mold yourself. Your homeowners insurance may also cover the cost of a professional mold tester, but insurance will not pay for home tests.
If you’ve done home mold tests that were negative but still have symptoms of mold-related illness, like respiratory problems, allergy-like symptoms, fatigue, rashes or itchy skin, it’s time to have a professional test for mold. You may have mold in an area you didn’t think to test or a type of mold that doesn’t show up on the home test you used.
If you or any members of your household have respiratory disorders or disorders involving the immune system, or if there are pregnant women or young children living in your home, we recommend having a professional test the home for mold to make sure all mold in the home is identified. The health risks of ongoing mold exposure are too great to take any chances.
You can follow this link to get a list of certified mold testers in your area.