Best Handheld Moisture Meters
The presence of moisture in drywall, wood or masonry can be and early or late indicator of mold’s presence. While not a direct mold test, handheld moisture meters are often used to pinpoint trouble areas.
Wagner’s Orion 950 is as good as it gets for measuring moisture inside wood. Using a non-damaging pinless sensor, the 950 can accurately measure the presence of moisture at both 1/4″ and 3/4″ depth.
Use is simple, and calibration can be performed on-site. Material can be set to a variety of levels to target the specific wood species being measured. Species include softwood, hardwood, bamboo, MDF, plywood and OSB.
While the Wagner 950 is most often found in the toolkit of wood floor installers, it’s also used to detect moisture when mold is suspected.
While moisture detection is necessary to understand if there may be a presence of mold in drywall, Klein’s ET140 Moisture Meter is a good choice. It is not as accurate as Wagner’s meter above, but it does do a reasonable job.
Like the Wagner model, the ET140’s pinless design means that you won’t be patching drywall later if no moisture is present.
Electromagnetic field (EMF) technology performs the measurement which is displayed on a 9-stage moisture range LED readout.
The unit is good for up to 3/4 inch material depth (approximately 19mm). While most often used for detecting moisture in drywall, the manufacturer claims it is also capable of testing soft wood, hard wood and masonry.