Which mold test kit is best?
When it comes to mold, you don’t want to take any chances — especially if you suspect a mold outbreak within your home. Part of the difficulty in identifying and ultimately doing away with mold is understanding where it’s coming from since it can live and travel through vents, into walls and in other hard-to-reach areas.
While it can be intimidating to decide which mold test kit to go with, the Mold Inspection Network DIY Mold Test Kit is a solid choice for at-home testing.
What to know before you buy a mold test kit
Types of mold test kits
The best mold test kit is the one that best suits your needs — leaving a wide range of options. Typically, mold test kits come in a few different common varieties: a tape or surface strip test; a visual swab sample test for clearly damp or moldy areas; chemical strips that can help identify certain types of mold; or a petri dish plate collection.
Mold test kit sample type
Depending on your budget, time constraints and other needs, it’s important to consider which mold test kit is best for your particular circumstances, whether this means an at-home test, a lab results test, an air-quality professional or a combination of all three. In general, mold test kits tend to fall into three categories when it comes to sample types, including air check tests, instant chemical tests and settling plate tests, which use the aforementioned petri dish model to collect samples.
Lab vs. no-lab mold test kits
Another important factor to consider when buying a mold test kit is whether or not you want to send your sample into a lab for results. While this can help confirm or identify the presence of a larger number of mold types than a typical at-home-only test may be able to, it also may take a longer period of time to await results, and it often includes extra fees.
What to look for in a quality mold test kit
Number of identifiable mold types
Tthe best mold test kits will identify the widest range of mold types, making this the most important factor to consider when choosing between different mold kits. Some buyers have found that certain mold test kits do not identify the specific type of mold in their home or space, and they either had to await secondary lab results or have the space tested by an air-quality professional. In either case, this can usually be avoided by spending a little extra to buy a test kit that covers a higher number of identifiable mold types.
Preferred mold test kit type
Different mold test kit types feature varying levels of reliability, so it’s basically up to the user to choose those that are more accurate than others. While an air-check mold test kit is typically the most reliable, it also tends to be the most expensive type of at-home mold test. Others, like chemical strips and swabs, tend to be a little less reliable, so they often include the aid of a lab results program.
How long results take
If you’re on a time crunch, you may not have time to wait for lab results or at-home results that need to incubate in a petri dish. Instead, it may be best to either hire a professional or to purchase a mold test kit that includes instant or fairly swift results.
How much you can expect to spend on a mold test kit
Those on a serious budget can find mold test kits for as cheap as $9; others may range between $10-$100 and sometimes more if you decide to hire an air-quality expert.
Mold test kit FAQ
Are mold test kits good for testing after repairs are made?
A. Yes. In fact, many professionals recommend following up mold repairs with a cheap mold test every so often to ensure the problem hasn’t come back. If the results come back positive after repairs, it may be a good idea to reach out to the person that made the repairs or another professional who can help you identify the mold.
Do mold test kits work?
A. In most cases, mold test kits do work. However, it is important to assess just what your needs are when dealing with potentially moldy areas and to make sure you get a test kit that will identify the type of mold you think you may have.
What’s the best mold test kit to buy?
Top mold test kit
What you need to know: This kit has three separate surface mold tests included and an easy-to-follow instruction booklet and start guide. Lab results are included with the price of the kit.
What you’ll love: This mold test kit tests for a wide range of mold types, and lab results don’t take long to be returned. Buyers can also call the company to ask questions during the process.
What you should consider: Buyers must pay their own shipping costs when sending strips into the lab.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top mold test kit for the money
What you need to know: This mold test kit comes at an excellent price point and can be purchased in two, three or four packs for those who want to stock up.
What you’ll love: With three different mold test types, including an indoor air quality test, an A/C sampling test and a surface strip test kit, Mold Armor takes just 48 hours to detect a number of mold types. This mold test kit also includes a lab for results verification.
What you should consider: It costs extra to use the lab results feature, although it’s more accurate and easier to understand than the at-home testing methods.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: For those who don’t want to involve a mold lab, this five-minute mold test kit can test for up to 32 mold types.
What you’ll love: Many users didn’t want to have to wait for lab results to be returned via mail, so this mold test kit fills an important need for those who want to be able to test from home. This mold test kit also comes at a good price point.
What you should consider: Some buyers later found mold types that weren’t covered in this test kit.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Peter McGuthrie writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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