You’ll have friends that’ll call you crazy for trying to do your own mold test at home… but mold is no joke. Prolonged exposure can have serious long term health effects. Is it really so crazy to take things into your own hands, understand your mold situation at home, and fix it if need be? We think not.
This article is our list of the greatest mold test kits available in 2020. We’ve reviewed the most popular ones and provided a clear verdict on which is most worth purchasing depending on your specific circumstanced.
Carry on reading or jump straight to our number #1 pick here.
First, Here’s How We’ve Determined the Best Mold Test Kits
In order to find the greatest mold kit, we looked at a variety of factors. For one, we looked at the reviews. If the consensus seemed to be that the tests were inaccurate, then we wrote the testing product off. We also looked at the features of the mold test kits to determine if they’re worth getting. How long until you get results? Do you have to pay any extra money? These questions helped us decide.
#1: DIY Mold Test, Mold Testing Kit (3 tests). Lab Analysis and Expert Consultation included (Best Value – All-Purpose)
This is one of those mold test kits that is the most well-rounded. The price is in the middle, and it helps cover most aspects of testing for mold. This mold test kit comes with easy instructions and what makes it one of the best around is that its lab fees are included.
Many mold test kits have you pay extra for lab fees, and these fees can add up. With this mold test kit, it’s included in the price, unless you live in Texas. Everything’s bigger in Texas, including the lab fees. Anyway, you will get a consultation, which helps to explain the results, and will tell you whether or not you need a mold growth inspection from a professional.
If you have to choose one mold test kit, we recommend this one for its ease of use and professionalism, which is why we included it.
#2: General Tools MMD4E Digital Moisture Meter (Best Machine)
In order to test for mold, you need to find moisture. One way you can test for mold is through a moisture meter. You don’t need a lab analysis for this machine to tell you if you have some moisture in your house.
One reason that you may want to buy this mold test machine is that it’s easy to use and you can also use it for more than finding mold. You just scan it on walls and other areas of your home, and its readings are displayed on the LCD monitor. This screen includes other necessities, such as power saving, low battery indicator, and it gives you the most accurate readings outside of a lab test.
The product has been positively reviewed on Amazon. Most people love its accurate readings and its good value for what it does. Some negative reviews said it didn’t test for moisture and despite there clearly being mold spores in the house, but this was a small number of people.
#3: My Mold Detective MMD103 Mold Test Kit, 3-Room Kit (Best Pump Kit)
This is the best mold test kit if you want a mold pump. It uses cassettes (not the type you or your parents had during childhood) to sample the air for mold spores. Two are for the outdoors, and one for the indoors. With this testing pump, you don’t need to wait a week or even 48 hours. It takes five minutes to happen, and you get professional results. It prides itself on being not a petri dish test kit, but instead something that looks more refined.
You can also use the lab analysis option, which does cost a bit for a sample. With that said, many people will be satisfied with the DIY mold test kit option.
Reviews for this mold test kit have been mostly positive. Many people say it’s easy to use and it gives good results. However, there are some negative reviews, and they mainly concern the added fees. With lab analysis, some people claim that the costs of it are much more than advertised, and they feel ripped-off. However, others claim that’s it still less than paying for an actual professional mold testing company.
#4: Mold Armor FG500 Do It Yourself Mold Test Kit (Best Low Cost)
If you need a DIY mold test kit and you don’t have much money, Mold Armor is your best bet. This mold test kit gives you results in under 48 hours. It doesn’t require any lab analysis or any advanced mold tests, making it one of the simplest DIY mold test kits out there. However, there is a lab test option.
With that said, reviews on the Mold Armor are a little more mixed. Some reviews say the kit could test mold and that it did it well. Others say that when it came to the lab analysis, they never got their test results back, but they were charged.
These kits already have a mixed reception in some circles, with many people saying you should just pay for a professional. We aren’t saying that affordable kits exist, but when you end up spending less money, you may end up with less accurate results.
#5: Healthful Home 5-Minute Testing Kit (Quickest Testing Kit)
Do you need a kit that gives you results fast? When you need to determine whether or not your house has mold, you may not want to wait for a week. Some people may not want to wait for 48 hours. The product emphasizes safety and ease-of-use, claiming that you can the mold testing is done through three steps and in five minutes.
We did put this on the bottom due to the reviews. They’re a little more mixed at around 3.5 out of five stars. Some reviewers claimed that the test works and that professionals later confirmed what the tests found. Others say that it works, but the instructions are vague and not as simple as advertised. Then, you how the crowd who claims it doesn’t work at all. If you want quick results and don’t want to pay too much, this may be worth the price.
Honestly, this product is good for if you don’t have much money and need something to hold you off, or if you are planning on contacting a professional and want to do a short test beforehand. With a kit like this, you may not get the most accurate results in under five minutes.
What About the Cheapies? Our Best Products Under $X
If you need a mold test kit for a certain price, here are some cheapies to get you started. Prices do not include lab testing, so always look up the lab fees before you buy any test kits. It can vary depending on several factors.
#1 Best Under $35: Schneider Labs Test Kit
This mold growth kit has quite a bit going for it. For one thing, this home testing set doesn’t appear to have any hidden lab fees or anything else. Instead, it gives you what types of mold are at your home, how many mold spores, and other details to help you out.
This doesn’t have any reviews as of this time. One earlier version did not receive positive reviews, but we don’t know if this revamp home mold testing set does any better. We say to try it out and see if it works for you.
#2 Best Under $25: MyMoldDetective MMD200A, Additional Samples Pack, 1-Room
This home testing product is an expansion to the air pump product we mentioned before, but it’s still worth looking at. As mentioned, this product doesn’t require a petri dish or any of that, so what does this expansion pack do? It helps you cover two more rooms. The lab fees are about the same, but if you have a pump and you need to add more home rooms to it, this has you covered.
Review scores have been mixed, but for some reason, the negative reviews aren’t showing. Amazon sometimes does this, and we’ll update if we can see the reviews.
#3 Best Under $15: Escolite UV Flashlight Black Light
If you want equipment to check for mold growth, one piece of equipment you should get is a UV light. It can help you find moisture, and some lights may help you kill mold. This isn’t a mold test kit, but because it can help, we put it on there. It’s also good for not only finding mold but looking outside to find other animals and minerals.
Reviews have been mostly been positive. People have found many things, not just mold growth, at their home. Some have found scorpions. Others have found odd stains on their clothes. This light can apparently do it all, minus the negative reviews that say it can’t, but those are in the minority.
# 4 Best Under $10: First Alert MT1 Mold Detection Kit
Do you need a mold test kit for less than a Hamilton? First Alert has you covered. This DIY mold test kit allows you to look for mold growth in 9 places. It does have a lab test option, but the lab fees are less expensive at about $15 per mold test.
Reviews have been mostly positive. Some people say this mold test kit works. Others say that it was inaccurate. However, with more positive than negative, we say it’s worth checking out.
Are mold test kits accurate?
A mold test kit can have varying levels of accuracy. Inaccurate testing kits may lack any expiration dates and not be professionally approved. A bad mold testing kit will detect mold that’s found everywhere in your home, and it may not give you the right solution. Because of this, the test kit industry has a bad name. Especially if you choose a DIY mold test.
What Happens if You Breathe in Mold in the Air?
We should probably talk about why you need these mold tests, to begin with. Mold spores enter the air around your house, and people in the house will breathe it in. So, what happens?
It all depends on how sensitive you are to mold and if you have allergies. Most people will feel some side effects from the air they breathe. You may feel irritated in your lungs, for example. Those who are more sensitive may take a whiff of moldy air and sneeze, have a rash, experience red eyes, or other allergies. Meanwhile, someone who is outright allergic to mold in the air may have an asthma attack and feel short of breath. Even if breathing in the mold in the air doesn’t affect you, you should purchase some tests to help other people in your family or possible visitors.
There are some people who are more susceptible to moldy air. Elderly people, babies, and children will have worse side effects. Those who breathe in moldy air and have compromised immune systems or who have lung disease may experience worse side effects, too.
What are the Signs of Mold in your house?
- Allergies. You may think that it’s springtime allergies as usual, but home mold can also make you cough, sneeze, have a runny nose, or give you other signs of allergies. In extreme cases, mold can be much more dangerous to you than just giving you a stuffy nose.
- It smells musty in your house. Some types of mold lack a scent, however.
- You see mold, which usually comes in the form of dark spots. However, home mold can come in various colors.
- You see water damage or leaks coming from your walls. Water damage can include discoloration or bubbling.
- If your house was flooded, mold can occur afterward.
If you notice any of these signs, it’s important to purchase a mould testing kit or contact a professional.
Do I Need to Worry If I Keep My Home Clean?
If you clean your home, make sure the air smells nice, and do other prevention tips, mold can still grow. This is because it’s often due to moisture that may not be visible unless you know where to look or what equipment to purchase. You can’t see mold in the air, nor can you smell it sometimes. It can be due to a leak or flaw in the house. Don’t think that because you keep your house and air cleaner that you’re safe.
It’s always important to start testing for mold in your house and keep testing if you feel something is wrong with the home.
Any Other Research Tips?
When you’re looking at mold tests, one factor you should think about is whether or not these tests have hidden fees. Some end up having extra costs due to lab work that needs to be done. One puts the mold on a petri dish, sends it, then waits for the results.
Many products will clear the air by telling you how much you have to pay, or it may be included in the kit. However, some will throw in hidden fees, such as shipping costs and processing fees. Always do your research so you don’t end up paying more than you have.
Verdict: Your Best Mold Test Kit
All right, now we that we have the best home mold test kits out there, let’s summarize them.
The best overall is the DIY Mold Test kit. It has no hidden lab fees and it gives you the best results.
The best machine, meanwhile, is the General Tools MMD4E Digital Moisture Meter. This helps you detect moisture, and it’s quite affordable.
The best pump is the My Mold Detective MMD103 Mold Test Kit, 3-Room Kit. It requires no petri dish, but it does have some lab fees. However, it covers up to three rooms in your home, making it quite useful.
The best low cost is Mold Armor FG500 Do It Yourself Mold Test Kit. The Mold Armor tests do have less positive reviews, but it’s a case of you getting what you pay for.
Finally, the Healthful Home 5-Minute Testing Kit provides the quickest tests out there. As we said before, it gives you less than five minutes. Now, some people may find that the tests are less than accurate, and it has received less positive reception. However, we believe that it’s still worth a purchase.
Phew. So many mold tests, so little time. If you’re planning on staying in your home for a while, getting accurate mold tests is important to keep the air in your house clean.