Mold Inspection, New Construction, and How Your Expected Deadlines Are Affected

As a general contractor, you secure a job by promising that construction will be completed by a certain date and under a specific dollar amount. However, the best plans do not always work out the way you intended. Take mold, for example. Finding mold in your new construction can completely derail a project, if you let it. If you get a mold inspection done right away, then you can get a good idea of how your deadlines are affected. Here is a typical timeline, from the discovery of the mold to its elimination. It will help you figure out how much extra time your crew needs to put into the job to catch up and/or how far behind your project will be.

From the Discovery of the Mold to the Inspection

After your crew has pointed out the mold (or you have spotted it yourself during a walk-through inspection), it can take up to three days to get an inspector in to check out the mold. During that time, you could continue construction, but you would have to build around and away from the infected area to avoid spreading the spores to the rest of the site. You should also have your crew wrap the infected areas with construction plastic or tarps to keep the area dry so the mold does not reproduce.

From the Mold Inspection to the Diagnosis

This is probably the shortest step in the whole process, as most mold inspectors can tell on the spot how bad your situation is. If samples need to be gathered and tested at the lab, it may slow your business up by about a day, if the mold inspector has his or her own lab at the office. If the samples have to be sent out for testing, it may take an extra day or two, sometimes more if the external lab is several miles away. Obviously, if you want your answers sooner, be sure to ask the mold inspectors if they have their own testing labs when you call to schedule an inspection.

The Treatment Plan and Your Deadlines

Almost all molds can be destroyed without harming your structures or making your crew sick. Once it has been determined what type of mold you are dealing with, then you can choose to kill the mold with the recommended treatment, rip out the affected boards or insulation and replace them, or hire a mold remediation specialist to address molds that are far too toxic for you and your crew to manage. Each of these approaches affects your deadline in different ways.

The first approach, killing the mold, will only take minutes (unless the mold is so out of control it has reached every area of the structure). The second method can add a couple days to the deadline, if the mold is not on the ground floor and your crew has not built several stories on top of it. The third and final method, usually reserved only for the most stubborn, most invasive and most toxic molds, may take up to a week, depending on how long it takes to get a mold remediation specialist like American Environmental Specialists LLC to your site and how extensive or dangerous the mold is. All in all, you could be looking at one to two weeks' worth of time you may have to make up or you may have to push the deadline out.