Air Testing and Site Inspections
Clean air is essential for a healthy indoor environment. Unfortunately, many homes and businesses have poor indoor air quality caused by dust, mold, allergens, bacteria, and other pollutants in the building’s ventilation system. Carolina Air Care offers professional air pollution testing services in Greenville, Spartanburg, Anderson, and surrounding Upstate SC areas to identify indoor air contaminates that could be potential health concerns.
We address all types of Air Testing, including:
- Residential Air Quality / Air Testing
- Commercial Air Quality / Air Testing
- Site Inspections
We provide home and site inspection services and lab analysis for:
- Mold Spores
- Microscopy for dust and particulate samples
- VOCs (chemicals)
- Multi-allergen screening
Our lab analysis is performed by SEEML labs. Based on the findings of your air test, our team of qualified technicians can recommend a plan to address any indoor air quality concerns.
Air Quality Testing FAQs
We test for mold. Most mold samples are air samples. We also test surfaces, or we may take both, which means a piece of the actual material to the lab and get it tested. Air samples for mold are collected using a spore trap air cassette and a vacuum pump. The vacuum pump pulls 15 L of air, pulled through the small spore trap Cassette. This process collects the spores onto the slide .Then the slide is taken to the lab. The lab can then put the slide it under a microscope and identify the number and type of mold spores.Surface samples are collected by using a clear tape. The clear tape removes the most spores from the surface and then the lab puts the tape under the microscope and determines the type of mold spores collected.Bulk samples are collected materials that are taken directly to the lab for the lab to do a direct examination.
We also test for bacteria. Most bacteria testing is after water intrusion that may be brown or black water. Black water is sewage related. The most important of the bacteria types to test for includes E. coli and coliform. These bacteria can cause human diseases. To test for bacteria, you do a swab sample of an area approximately 1″ x 1″. Then the sample is sent to the lab for an analysis determines the type of bacteria and at what levels it is present.
VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds)
We test for VOCs. VOCs are chemical gases. The most common is formaldehyde. VOC testing is often done in newer homes or newer buildings or when odors are present and no other bacteria are detected.
Voc Testing is done with a vacuum canister. The vacuum canister can take 2, 4, 8 hours or another timed air sample. The vacuum canister is then sent to a lab then breaks down all the compounds and sends a report stating what volatile organic compounds are in the air.
We test for chared particles after fire restoration to see if the restoration process was complete. After a fire damage, occupants may still smell smoke. Testing can determine if the cleanup process was adequate.
We test for MVOCs, which are the gas by-products of mold. Sometimes, a mold test may indicate a low level of mold spores but a high-level of the MVOCs. Sometimes, with hidden mold an elevated spore count does not exist but in elevated MVOC count will exist.
We can do moisture testing to determine water intrusion or humidity problems. Moisture meters and hygrometers help in determining what materials are wet and what the humidity levels of the air are. This combined with a good site inspection can help determine where water and moisture intrusions are coming from.
Laser Particle Counts
We do laser particle counts to test for the levels of particulates in the air This can be useful to determine if better filtration is needed or where a contaminated area is. A laser particle counter is a machine that uses lasers to count particles in the air.
Turn around time for testing varies from one day to two weeks. Most samples can have a verbal in three working days and a full report in five working days. If turnaround times need to be overnight or immediate,it can be done but the lab costs go up double to triple. Most people are willing to wait 3 to 5 days.
Typical cost on testing are $300-$500 for a residential project.
If needed, a full protocol is $300-$500.
Post-testing and clearance letters are $300-$500.
Bacteria and cultured mold samples take longer because the cultures have to grow or develop. Many times bacteria testing will run $700-$1500 depending on the difficulty of the project.
VOC Testing is usually $1000-$1500.
MVOC testing is usually $500-$700.
Post Project smoke damage testing is usually $800-$1200.
Moisture meters, hygrometers, and particle counters are typically an hourly cost of an initial site inspection $125-$300 depending on the size of the project.
It is very important to remember that a lab analysis needs to be accompanied by a quality site inspection report so, when problems are detected a clear solution is part of your report.
Clean your air ducts every five years.Keep your gutters clean, your crawlspace dry, change your filter monthly. It is also important to use a hypoallergenic filter, have an annual maintenance contract for your HVAC unit that includes coil cleaning, and address any water damage immediately.In addition, address any odd odors.