Lab Services - What you Need to Know

Many people are misinformed about mold and lab testing. First, there is no certification for mold/fungi testing by any authority. When a laboratory advertises “certifications” they are referring to a voluntary association with an organization such as AIHA-LAP (food/microbiology) or NVLAP (asbestos), or NLLAP (lead), which does not have any specific accreditation for mold/fungi. There is no known accreditation for the analysis of mold/fungi for a laboratory.
Laboratory technicians who are analyzing/counting spores on mold samples are mostly trained in-house and many have no real training in mycology or sampling techniques and they have no knowledge of the actual conditions present in the structure – they are simply identifying the fungi or counting the spores and that, in and of itself, provides no value without the assessment.

Some laboratories are adopting the ISO/IEC 17025 General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories (required in Texas) but you should understand, again, it does not address fungi/mold. The message here is you should discount these types of accreditations when posted online by labs, or “mold testers” who advertise they only use “accredited labs”; there aren’t any. They are deceiving you. The simple truth is there are no governmental guidelines as to what constitutes an “elevated” condition for any mold/fungi. They can’t define “elevated” or “amplified” because there is no medical or industrial hygiene data to support any level related to a health threat or condition. I’m sorry but those official looking reports or studies you find online are either fake news or they have been proven false with additional studies. Dampness never killed any children in Cleveland, Ohio, although most agree it did not help.

A well-qualified mold assessor who has earned the CIEC or a Certified Safety Professional (the highest safety certification there is) and who has demonstrated knowledge in building construction is what you need to get the best insight on the environmental condition you live/work in.

Don’t fall for mold scams. Ask for qualifications. While it may sound great to get a “mold test for peace of mind” for $295, it is most likely a waste of your money.