What is a home inspection?
A home inspection is a visual examination of the home's major structure, systems and components that are visible and safely accessible. The inspector should substantially adhere to a standards of practice that outlines what should be covered during a general home inspection, as well as what is excluded. Some inspectors may strictly follow the standards of practice, while others may exceed the standards and inspect other items, or perform a more detailed inspection. Whatever the inspector includes in his or her inspection should be discussed prior to the inspection – this is known as the scope of work. The inspector should be able to provide you with a copy or online link to the standards of practice they follow. The inspector should provide you with a written report, which may include photos and/or recommendations, of his or her findings of the inspection.
Breathe Easier with Four Corners Home Inspections' Air Quality Testing
What is Indoor Air Quality Testing?
Indoor air quality testing is a way to search the air in your home for any harmful substances. If you suspect that there might be any issues with the quality of the air in your home, getting an indoor air quality test would be highly recommended. The quality of the air in your home could be cause for concern for the health and well-being of the residents. Indoor air quality testing can test for specific substances and pollutants. The only way to know whether the air in your home that you are breathing is contaminated and at what level is by testing the air. Home inspectors that offer indoor air quality testing as part of their services are more and more in demand.
What are Common Issues That Home Inspectors Uncover with Indoor Air Quality Testing?
When home inspectors do indoor air quality testing, they are usually testing for specific substances or pollutants. These pollutants can typically be broken down into three different categories. The first is particulate indoor pollutants, which can include dust, pollen, secondhand smoke, animal dander, diesel exhaust particles that get in from outside, and dust mites. The second category is biological indoor pollutants, which include, mildew, mold, viruses, and bacteria. The third category is gaseous indoor pollutants, which include carbon monoxide gas, radon gas, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Certain types of household items or building materials might emit VOCs, which are harmful chemicals, such as paint, cleaning products, wood, furniture, and several others.
Some of the causes of these issues may include stale or stuffy air, dirty central heating or air conditioning equipment, damaged chimneys, unventilated combustion air sources for fossil fuel appliances such as gas stoves or fireplaces, leaking pipes, poor circulation, and excessive humidity within the home. These are all issues that the home inspectors might find when doing an indoor air quality test.
Mold Testing: Get Professional Results with Four Corners Home Inspections
Let’s face it, many houses have mold somewhere inside. Where there is water and moisture, there’s usually some sort of mold. On the surface, literally and figuratively, mold is a major deterrent from buying what is an otherwise great home. But not all mold is toxic, however, which is why taking a mold swab or indoor air quality sample (IAQ) is very helpful to our clients. Knowledge is powerful when dealing with issues like these.
The key to control mold is to control moisture. If mold is a problem in your home then you should clean up the mold promptly, and fix the moisture problem. It is important to dry water damaged areas within 24-48 hours to prevent mold growth. Mold is usually a problem when it starts growing indoors. Indoor conditions lend them self to mold growth due to temperature, moisture and lack of sunshine.
Mold can enter your home through open doorways and windows, vents and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold in the air outside can also attach itself to clothing, shoes, and pets and be carried indoors. When mold spores drop on places where there is excessive moisture, such as where leakage may have occurred in roofs, pipes, walls, plant pots, or where there has been flooding, they will grow. Many building materials will provide suitable nutrients that encourage mold to grow. Wet cellulose materials, including paper and paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, wood, and wood products are all particularly conducive for the growth some molds, Other materials such as dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation materials, drywall, carpet, fabric and upholstery, commonly support mold growth.
If you see signs of mold or smell musty odors have them checked & sampled to know what you are dealing with.