Six points on Air Quality

1...Air Quality Inspections


SERVICES we perform in Key West and the Florida Keys

  1. Air Quality Assessment  
  2. Mold inspections 
  3. Mold and moisture surveys  
  4. Mold testing
  5. Mold remediation procedures and guidelines

  • condition of walls, ceiling and floors
  • relative humidity levels
  • levels of airborne particles 
  • levels of formaldehyde
  • levels of carbon dioxide.
  • levels of carbon monoxide
  • mold spore count
  • electrical magnetic fields
  • microwave oven leakage
  • volatile organic compounds, VOCs
  • air purification machines and filters
  • bacteria levels
  • yeast levels

Air quality evaluations are complex. They involve

  1. Psycometrics and building science
  2. Assessing for water damage and fungal growth
  3. Spotting health concerns
  4. Identifying the effects of water on different building materials
  5. Identifying water vapor transmission and source identification
  6. The smart use of laboratories and testing instruments for intelligent diagnostics
  7. data analysis and interpretation


Mold inspections  are an important part of ensuring a healthy environment.   I also test for  Volatile Organic Compounds VOCs, Formaldehyde, bacteria, CO2 and  CO and more.

 In order to assess a buildings condition a thorough inspection may be required, using moisture meters and Infrared Thermal Imaging.

 Mold sample collection and analysis.

 In order to assess the air quality and mold spores in a building, a spore trap must be used with a special air pump. The particles in the air are caught on a microscope slide and then sent to a lab for analysis. Mold assessment & lab report interpretation The lab results are analysed by the Mold Assessor and relayed to the client as part of the remediation guidelines and procedures. 

Proper mold remediation procedures and guidelines should be followed.

 Due to the many misconceptions the public has with regard to mold, there are various types of mold remediators and remediation quotes will often vary considerably, with very different results.  The problem is that some contractors are more concerned with a short term solution to air quality. 

 If there is no Mold Assessor to check on their work, the air quality often is not any better or it worsens as time progresses.   

Key West Florida Keys


2...Who to use in the Key West Mold Industry


 Use licensed Mold Assessors only. 

Stay away from Ozone treatment companies.  Ozone will kill mold, but mold will grow back within hours. 

The State of Florida has attempted to protect the public with laws, stating that only Mold Assessors can write remediation guidelines. (Hugh is a Mold Assessor) 

So now,  the remediation contractors are supposed to quote on and follow the remediation guidelines provided by the Assessor.  In this way we are all working for sustainable air quality and money is not wasted on short term questionable " fixes".

 Post Remediation Clearance.

 When remediation is complete the Mold Assessor should do a final inspection and air test to establish that mold spore levels are no longer elevated and conditions are present for continuing air quality.  

Hugh Johnson is licensed by the State of Florida as a Mold Assessor. # MRSA217.   His license can be viewed on the certificate page of this web site. 

If you have mold problems, suspect them or just want to be sure your air is healthy, have an infrared inspection performed along with microbial air sampling.   This is the most effective cutting-edge mold investigation.  It finds problems which cause mold, and shows the types of spores present as well as the number of spores and health concerns associated with them. From there you can make educated decisions about how to proceed.  The infrared camera can expose problems quickly and efficiently.  The equipment is very expensive so many mold treatment businesses are not equipped. 

 Don't have any treatments performed or mold remediation done without having an infrared / thermal investigation and microbial sampling done first. 

Hugh is the most experienced mold assessor in the Keys and licensed by the State of Florida as a Mold Assessor. He is an active qualified member of NORMI  National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors.  

Hugh is also an approved Indoor Air Quality inspector with National Association of Certified Home Inspectors,  NACHI.

Remediation guidelines and advice during remediation are available.

Call for a no obligation quote.

KeyWest FL Keys

3...Testimonials from Key West and the Florida Keys


Customer satisfaction is paramount

Unsolicited comment from a customer April 2010  " I just wanted to take the time to let you know how much I appreciated your work.  Your detection, your suggestions, and your professional manner really helped to solve the mystery of the smell.  Please know I will highly recommend you to people with similar problems, and please know that if you need a testimonial, you are free to use this.  It was a pleasure, and again I thank you".     Rita Poore   


I had a musty smell and a friend suggested I call Hugh Johnson owner of Key West Real Estate Home Inspection & Air Quality Mold Tests. Mr. Johnson quickly identified the problem area with his test equipment which greatly reduced the amount of rework required and then performed a follow up test assuring us all signs of moisture and mold were no longer present. Even the contractor doing the repairs was amazed with Mr. Johnson’s ability to identify the specific problem area which minimized the amount of ceiling work required. Steve…a very satisfied customer   Sunset Dr  Key West

 Unsolicited email  from Patti    Hi Hugh – thank you very much!  Thanks for performing it so quickly and thoroughly – my husband and I were impressed with the report/photos. We’d use you again!

 I am so grateful to have had you and your professionalism & expertise in our home
J. Grant Key West

Hugh, thank you for that!  You have been very helpful through this, we really appreciate it.

J  Cooper,  Key  West

4... Health Issues


 What is Mold 

Molds are fungi (the plural of fungus) that grow on the surfaces of objects. They can cause discoloration and odor problems, deteriorate building materials, and lead to allergic reactions in susceptible individuals, as well as other health problems.Mold spores primarily cause health problems when they are present indoors in large numbers and are inhaled by the occupants. This occurs primarily when there is active mold growth inside the building. Typical symptoms that mold-exposed persons report include:

  • Respiratory problems, such as - wheezing, and difficulty breathing;
  • Nasal and sinus congestion;
  • Eye irritation - burring, watery, or reddened eyes;
  • Dry hacking cough;
  • Nose and/or throat irritation.

  Certified Mold Inspection The mold assessment includes state of the art testing equipment and laboratory analysis. This service is set up for the real estate transaction as we can have an answer to the question about whether or not their is a mold problem in as soon as 24 hours.   The Environmental Protection Agency rates indoor air pollution among the top environmental health risks. According to the EPA, the air inside the average home is up to five times more polluted than the air outside. Poor indoor air quality can lead to a variety of health problems, including allergic reactions, infections, and even cancer. It can also contribute to asthma and other lung diseases.   

Molds are microscopic organisms (miniscule life forms) found virtually everywhere outdoors. No one really knows how many species of mold exist but estimates range from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands. Spore production is characteristic of molds in general to reproduce. A spore is a small reproductive body that is capable of growing into a new organism, producing bacteria, fungi, and algae. Most spores are filamentous (thread-like) organisms so small that 250,000 of them can fit on the head of a pin. They stay airborne indefinitely, drifting from one room to the next, landing on food, clothing, appliances, table tops, carpeting and furniture, walls and woodwork. Any wet, damp or humid surface becomes a breeding ground for mold colonies and more spores. We have all seen mold; ugly stains of white, orange, green, brown and black spreading on walls, floors and other surfaces. But the most dangerous mold is the mold we don?t see.

Key West FL keys

5... Why Test for Mold?



For the good of your health and your pocket book.

Mold is in the spotlight. Numerous alerts from the medical profession and the skyrocketing number of lawsuits Some have even called it "The Silent Killer". That may be on the extreme side, but with all the information available about mold and it's potential for harm, there are plenty of valid reasons for mold testing. For example, we now know that some molds produce toxins which may be linked to severe cases of asthma, respiratory problems including bleeding lungs, and many other very serious ailments including immune system disorders. The medical and legal communities are now taking mold contamination very seriously. With so much overwhelming evidence to support the dangers of exposure to mold, mold testing is the first step in properly assessing whether an abnormal or elevated mold condition exists.  As for Property Damage, the very nature of mold is to decompose matter. Over a period of time, mold can destroy anything and everything it comes in contact with, including your home and personal belongings. Does the fact that mold is present automatically mean your property is doomed? Of course not. But the longer it goes unaddressed, the more damage it will cause.    

The difference between a minor mold problem and a major problem is -        a; How long before you discover it, and       b; how long you wait to do something about it.     

Key West FL Keys

6...Clean Air Supplies recommended by Inspect Key West


We not only assess, we also steer you in the right direction for lasting air quality and protection from airborne and surface contaminants.

Hugh Johnson

Inspect Key West Inc.

Air Handler Filters

One of the most common issues with air quality is improper filtration at the air handler. No blow-by, mold resistant, 90 day, MERV 7 filters should be used in order to reduce the buildup of dust and mold in the air handler.  These can be seen and purchased at   

Inspect Key West Inc. has found these filters to be the best on the market and as a result has become a distributor of these filters and may make a small commission from their sale. 

Air Purifiers

CLEAN AIR ONLINE SHOPPINGThe following is a link to an online store for great air quality products. Dont forget to use the discount code for 5% discount.The discount code is     KEYWEST

Shop here for air quality supplies.

see our newest IAQ web site here