Question? Just ask us!
Free Encyclopedia of Building & Environmental Inspection, Testing, Diagnosis, Repair
ENVIRONMENTAL HAZARDS - INSPECT, TEST, REMEDY
AIR CLEANER PURIFIER TYPES
AIR POLLUTANTS, COMMON INDOOR
AIR QUALITY IMPROVEMENT STRATEGIES
AIRBORNE PARTICLE ANALYSIS METHODS
ALLERGEN TESTS for BUILDINGS
ASBESTOS IDENTIFICATION IN BUILDINGS
BACKDRAFTING HEATING EQUIPMENT
BLACK MOLD, TOXIC & ALLERGENIC
BLEACHING MOLD, Advice about
BOOKSTORE - ENVIRONMENTAL
CADMIUM in the HOME
CARBON MONOXIDE - CO
CARPETING & INDOOR AIR QUALITY
CAT DANDER in BUILDINGS
CELL PHONE RADIATION
CHEMICAL CONTAMINANTS in WATER
COMBUSTION PRODUCTS & IAQ
DIRECTORY of MOLD / ENVIRONMENTAL EXPERTS
DUST SAMPLING PROCEDURE
EMERGENCY RESPONSE, IAQ, GAS, MOLD
EMF ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDSRE
ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS at BUILDINGS
FLOOD DAMAGE ASSESSMENT, SAFETY & CLEANUP
FLOOR TILE ASBESTOS IDENTIFICATION
FUNGICIDAL SPRAY & SEALANT USE
GAS EXPOSURE EFFECTS, TOXIC
HEATING OIL EXPOSURE HAZARDS, LIMITS
HOUSE DUST ANALYSIS
HOUSE DUST COMPONENTS
HUMIDITY CONTROL & TARGETS INDOORS
INDOOR AIR QUALITY IMPROVEMENT GUIDE
LAB PROCEDURES MICROSCOPE TECHNIQUES
LEAD POISONING HAZARDS GUIDE
Legionella Legionnaires' Disease
LIGHT, GUIDE to FORENSIC USE
METHANE GAS SOURCES
MILDEW in BUILDINGS ?
MOISTURE CONTROL in BUILDINGS
MOLD ACTION GUIDE - WHAT TO DO ABOUT MOLD
MOLD CONSULTANTS / INSPECTORS
MOLD DETECTION & INSPECTION GUIDE
MOLD EXPERT, WHEN TO HIRE
MOLD RELATED ILLNESS GUIDE
MSDS Material Safety Data Sheets
MVOCs & MOLDY MUSTY ODORS
NOISE / SOUND DIAGNOSIS & CURE
ODORS GASES SMELLS, DIAGNOSIS & CURE
OIL, HEATING, EXPOSURE HAZARDS, LIMITS
OIL HEAT ODORS & NOISES
OIL SPILL CLEANUP / PREVENTION
PET ALLERGENS / PET DANDER
PET STAINS & MARKS in BUILDINGS
PLASTIC ODORS-SCREENS, SIDING
PLUMBING SYSTEM ODORS
PVC - VINYL BUILDING PRODUCTS
RADON HAZARD TESTS & MITIGATION
SAFETY HAZARDS GUIDE
SAFETY HAZARDS & INSPECTIONS
METHANE GAS HAZARDS
SEPTIC SYSTEM ODORS
SEWAGE BACKUP TEST & CLEANUP
SEWER GAS ODORS
SMELL PATCH TEST to Track Down Odors
STAIN DIAGNOSIS on BUILDING EXTERIORS
STAIN DIAGNOSIS on BUILDING INTERIORS
SULPHUR & SEWER GAS SMELL SOURCES
UFFI UREA FORMALDEHYDE FOAM INSULATION
URETHANE FOAM Deterioration, Outgassing
VINYL CHLORIDE HEALTH INFO
VOCs VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS
WATER ODORS, CAUSE CURE
This article describes how make effective use of light such as from a good flashlight to find hard to see mold in buildings. How we aim the light and how we actually look makes the difference between finding or completely missing light and hard-to spot indoor mold contamination on building surfaces and materials.
Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2014 InspectApedia.com, All Rights Reserved.
Proper use of and aiming of light or a flashlight when looking for mold in buildings can make the difference between seeing and missing what might be the most important mold reservoirs in a given structure.
Like the Purloined letter problem mold may be in plain sight but may be hard to see, until you know how to look.
One result is that people who are testing mold often collect the "easy to see" mold but perhaps not the most important mold in a building. Here's how to do it right - in this brief article.
For a more extnsive article with more photos and advice on how to use lighting and how to aim a flashlight to spot hard to see mold, read USE A FLASHLIGHT. In most cases, proper use of a flashlight can help spot mold on paneling and other building surfaces.
How and where you shine light is of crucial importance when looking for mold in buildings.
Light-colored mold such as some members of the Aspergillus sp. and Penicillium sp. groups are often the dominant problem-mold in buildings but these offenders are often missed by a casual inspection because they can be hard to see on surfaces.
You need a bright flashlight and you need to know how to use it. Shine the light along the surface being examined, not straight at it.
As you'll see in the mold photographs shown here, using your light carefully can make a big difference in what mold you find and where you find it. Just looking for "black mold" risks missing the important mold in a building.
I'd suspect that it has been exposed to high moisture if not water, and that there is risk of hidden mold on the cavity side of this material. Further inspection was needed.
For our longer article with more photos and advice on how to use lighting and how to aim a flashlight to spot hard to see mold, read Mold Detection - using a flashlight to find mold - proper use of a flashlight can help spot mold on paneling and other building surfaces.
Another example of use of oblique lighting to find building defects is illustrated at PLASTER BULGES & PILLOWS.
Green link shows where you are in this article series.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about how to make best use of light to find hard-to-see mold contamination in buildings
Try the search box just below or if you prefer, post a question or a comment in the Comments box below and we will respond promptly.
Search the InspectApedia website
HTML Comment Box is loading comments...
Technical Reviewers & References
Related Topics, found near the top of this page suggest articles closely related to this one.
Allergies, Allergens, Allergy Testing in Buildings - References & Products
Mold Contamination Testing, Cleanup, Prevention: references & products
OTHER IAQ ISSUES: How To Find and Address Other Indoor Air or Indoor Environment Contaminants Besides Mold
Mold or allergens may not be the only or even the main indoor environmental contaminant. Don't let media attention to mold cause so much enviro-scare fear that other, possibly more urgent hazards go un-addressed.