How to Test a Basement for Mold

Mold is a fungus that grows on a variety of surfaces.

Visual Mold Sampling

Mold can typically be found growing in basements.Mold can typically be found growing in basements.
It thrives in damp, dark and humid locations and can be found growing in various areas both inside and outside your home. Mold eats away at the surface it is growing on and can damage the item beyond repair. Mold is usually present in the basement of many homes. Even if you do not see mold, it does not mean your basement is mold-free. Fortunately, there are do-it-yourself mold testing kits available for purchase at home improvement stores nationwide.

Step 1

Pour the medium into the bottom of the petri dish and allow to harden for 1 hour.

Step 2

Swab the surface of the basement mold with the tip of the sterile swab. You want to grab a chunk of the mold with the swab.

Step 3

Wipe the swab tip across the bottom of the petri dish so the mold adheres to the medium.

Step 4

Secure the lid onto the petri dish.

Step 5

Ship the mold sample to the lab for processing. See the instruction manual that comes with the test kit for more information on how and where to ship the sample.

Settling Plate Sampling

Step 1

Pour the medium into the bottom of the petri dish and allow to harden for 1 hour.

Step 2

Remove the lid from the petri dish. Place the dish in the middle of the basement on a level location for 1 hour.

Step 3

Secure the lid back onto the petri dish and allow to incubate.

Step 4

Check for signs of mold growth at 48 hours, 72 hours and 96 hours. If no signs of mold growth appear, discard the petri dish. If, however, there are signs of mold growing inside the dish, then ship the mold sample to the lab for processing.

Things You Will Need

  • Do-it-yourself mold testing kit

About the Author

Amanda Flanigan began writing professionally in 2007. Flanigan has written for various publications, including WV Living and American Craft Council, and has published several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects. Flanigan completed two writing courses at Pierpont Community and Technical College.