One of the key parts of an effective mold remediation project is one that is often overlooked. “Post remediation verification” (PRV), or “clearance testing” is the process that evaluates the performance of a mold remediation project. This step should always be done by an unaffiliated, third-party testing company to assure an unbiased assessment. This assessment is so important that some states require it by law. It is also key that this assessment is scheduled at the proper stage in a remediation project. A verification assessment should be done after all of the mold has been removed, but before the containment has been removed, antimicrobial coatings have been applied, and build-back of the building materials.
The specific steps taken for a post remediation verification assessment are dependent on the specific mold remediation project, however a few basic steps should be followed: assessing the containment, visual inspection for remaining mold growth or mold damaged materials, verifying there are no musty odors present, and checking that the work area is clean. Although there is no consensus on sampling for clearance, air samples are commonly collected to see if the levels in the air have been returned to background amounts.
We occasionally get calls from clients who have been told by their remediation company NOT to have a post remediation verification inspection done. They typically say it is a waste of money. These unscrupulous companies don’t want anyone to review their work because in our experience even the best companies often miss things. You can imagine what might be missed by companies who like to cut corners! In our experience, we find something that was missed in about 50% of all post remediation verifications. This can range from small areas of missed growth or a slight elevation of airborne fungal levels to large issues like major moisture problems and mold damaged materials remaining in place.
The key goal of a mold remediation project is to return the affected areas to a “pre-loss state”. This can help avoid future issues from a problem you thought was already addressed. One of the most compelling reasons to have PRV testing done is to provide a “clearance letter”. This is a document you can share with the future purchaser of your home when disclosing the past mold problem. Having an independent evaluation determine that the project was successful can put everyone’s’ mind at ease. For all these reasons, we strongly recommend having a post remediation verification assessment done.