Most of the mould testing in New Zealand is carried out by the Structural Materials Institute (SMI), based in Wellington. It is one of the major members of the New Zealand Institute of Standardization (NSSI). Their website contains a range of information and services on material testing, with a particular emphasis on moisture testing. It also has some great practical videos on testing for mould, available to help you with your testing. Click here more about.
Why it Pays to Get Mold Testing Before Construction Starts
Your mold or moisture testing should begin by determining the moisture level in the area you have chosen for mold removal and remediation, as well as the source of moisture. It is important to firstly locate the original contaminated area so that you know the exact moisture content of the place and the moisture level at present. You will then need to take measurements of the area to establish the relative humidity for the region. This is often measured using a hygrometer which is either hand-held or can be mounted on a stand. You will need to conduct a number of tests, both in terms of colour and texture to assess whether there is a need for mold remediation, including the possible restoration of the area.
The hygrometer readings will provide you with the relative moisture level in the air, meaning you can determine how much further you will have to travel to reach a moisture-free area. If a moisture level remains constant for more than a day, then you are more than likely suffering from mold symptoms such as cracking and peeling paintwork, re-soiling carpets and timber, and reduced levels of structural stability. If a moisture level increases towards the end of the day, then this is a strong indicator of a damp or wet environment, which will require further investigation. Once your investigation is complete, then you will be in a better position to decide if any action needs to be taken.