Verifying the presence of mold

Think you may have found mold? There’s a few characteristics you can look for to get a better of idea if is in fact mold.

The presence of mold: What mold looks like

Mold comes in a wide variety of colors including black, grey-brown, grey-green, white & orange spots, or even pink or purple splotches. What controls the color of mold? A variety of factors including what the mold has been feeding on and what type of mold it is.

Stachybotrys, or toxic black mold, is commonly a predominantly dark, slimy, greenish-black mold. This mold is a mycotoxin producer capable of causing animal and human mycotoxicosis.


Mold is often, but not always, accompanied by a musty or mildewy smell.

Mold testing

Mold testing is the most common and efficient way of confirming the presence of mold, be it toxic black mold or another species of mold on your hands.

Testing involves collecting samples, either by contact or surface sampling, or by removing small samples of material in the affected area and having them tested.

In the past most testing was done by local contractors. Today, it is possible to purchase a mold testing kit, package samples and send them to a lab, and receive results back in a week or less.

Whichever route you choose, testing should be done by an accredited lab with experience testing mold specifically using EPA-recommended procedures.