Break The Mold Wrapped Truck

Who To Call For A Mold Inspection

When you discover mold in your home, your knee-jerk reaction can be to scrub away at the surface that contains the mold and conduct extensive Internet searches to find out the cause. This reaction often comes about because you aren’t sure who to call for mold inspection.

Break the Mold performs this work for Kalamazoo County and all surrounding areas as a local mold inspection company. We take the stress off homeowners’ shoulders and get to the bottom of the mold source. Our owner, John Sweeney, was born to do this!

Continue reading below to learn more about our background and expertise in mold and mildew clean-up and inspection.


As a company, we hold many certifications on healthy living situations and mold inspection. Some of them include:

  • CRMI – Certified Residential Mold Inspector
  • CCMI – Certified Commercial Mold Inspector
  • CMR – Certified Mold Remediator
  • Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC)
  • Successful Subrogation I
  • Wonder Makers Environmental

These certifications help us be a top mold inspection company in our region. We have all the necessary knowledge to accurately diagnose the issues individuals and businesses face due to mold and mildew.


Our company comes to you with years of experience in the field. Our owner, John Sweeney, tells the story of himself as a young boy who begged his parents to let him make his room in the basement. As years went on, John developed allergies and health issues and was under the care of many different doctors.

It wasn’t until many years later, after the family had moved to a new home, that his symptoms disappeared, and he came to the realization that his health concerns were a result of mold infestation in the basement. The same basement he had begged his parents to let him move into in the first place!

This experience propelled John forward into the place he is in today, helping others to eliminate dangerous and unhealthy toxins from their home. Therefore, when wondering who to call for mold inspection, Break the Mold is the most logical choice for those in the Kalamazoo, Michigan area.


As a direct result of John’s health issues as a child, a passion built up to help others in a similar situation. He went on to gain experience in both mold and mildew inspection and clean up, as well as pest removal. He also obtained certifications in water damage restoration, fire and smoke restoration, odor control, and methamphetamine lab clean-up.

It is safe to say that Break the Mold has a passion for ensuring the safety of those in their community, whether it be mold or otherwise.

Final Thoughts

While finding mold in your home can be scary and overwhelming, having a mold inspection company to help guide you through the process can take away the stress that you are facing.

If you find yourself in a similar situation and don’t know who to call for mold inspection, reach out to Break the Mold and get your inspection today!

Professional Mold Testing in Kalamazoo, MI

When you see mold pop up in your home, the initial reaction that most have is to feel anxious. Not knowing if it’s dangerous or whether it poses a health concern can cause distress to households. Thankfully, Break the Mold offers a professional mold testing service for those around Kalamazoo, MI. 


Knowing that the service is available is one thing, but understanding the different testing processes is another. Depending on the location and type of mold, the route to identify the source will differ. Continue reading to learn more about the different kinds of testing we utilize at Break the Mold.

Spore Trap Analysis 

When using an air sample for testing, we often utilize a spore trap analysis to identify the genus and assess the background debris of the mold. Additionally, using this style of testing allows us to test the air quality of a home or business.


This test is non-culturable, meaning that there doesn’t have to be a waiting period to receive accurate results. This testing style typically comes with quick results, which allows us to formulate a treatment plan immediately. 

Direct Microscopic Exam

As a qualitative style test that is often performed with professional mold testing, we take a mold sample and review its features and specifications through a microscope. Using various magnifications and light, we can accurately diagnose the source of the mold, as well as type.


While this style of testing does not come with rapid results, it doesn’t have a lengthy turnaround time either. Using this type of testing will allow us to identify growth patterns and focus on the specific genus that the mold belongs to. Having this information will enable us to create a focused plan for resolving the issue.

ERMI Testing

At Break the Mold in Kalamazoo, MI, we offer professional mold testing that lines up with the Environmental Relative Moldiness Index (ERMI). This specific type of test compares the findings to 36 different molds to calculate a particular index number. Finding this information comes through the process of Mold-Specific Quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction (MSQPCR).


While ERMI testing is not used extensively throughout the United States, it is a helpful research tool that helps identify mold contamination in homes more accurately. Having a high level of detail in findings allows technicians to customize treatment plans more effectively.

In Summary

Although the moment you discover a new mold in your home can be anything but reassuring, knowing that companies like Break the Mold offer professional mold testing brings peace of mind. As a top provider of testing and treatment services in Kalamazoo, MI, Break the Mold offers high-quality testing strategies to identify the source and treat it accordingly.


If you find yourself in this situation, don’t panic. Instead, reach out to schedule a time for us to check it out. Our prompt turnaround will have your situation cleared up and your house back to normal in no time. Contact us today for your professional mold testing needs!

Mold Inspection and Testing in Kalamazoo MI

When you find mold in your home, your first thought is often to turn to the Internet and find out what it is and how to resolve it. While there are times that this helps, those moments are few and far between. 


The truth of the matter is that each situation is unique. It is rarely possible to determine the root of the issue from an online search engine. When it comes to mold, there are no generic solutions. Finding the right approach to resolution requires mold inspection and sometimes testing. 


Below we outline three important components of the treatment process. Continue reading to understand better the appropriate response to new mold growth in your home.


The first and most important step to addressing mold in a home is to undergo a mold inspection. For this, we come into your home and thoroughly inspect the problem areas. After identifying the extent of the mold and the surrounding areas, we will begin identifying different sources that may cause the mold to grow and spread. 


With years of experience in the field, we can accurately assess and diagnose various molds and mildew. We bring this knowledge to you quickly so we can return your house to its safe and healthy state as soon as possible. 


The second step may be mold and air testing. During this process, we will assess the situation and determine what dangers are present. Knowing all of the different elements of the mold and the damage it is doing to the air quality will allow us to make a custom treatment plan.


Testing gives an overview into the situation on a more detailed level. At times we may swab the area for samples or retain an air sample. Keep in mind, testing is not always necessary. 


Following the testing stage, we enter the treatment phase. Here we determine the best route to rid your home of the mold and what measures to implement to ensure it doesn’t return. When creating a custom treatment for your situation, there are many elements to take into account. 


For starters, the situation may extend further than what the eye can see. Often mold is present, but mold spores and their toxins are not visible. Additionally, treatment needs to take into account the airflow of the space (basements and bathrooms retain a lot of moisture) and how that can resist treatment efforts. All of these will direct resolution efforts, which involve a decontamination process and often minor construction changes. 

In Summary

When you discover an area of mold in your home, it is crucial to get a proper mold inspection and testing. While your first instinct may be to find the solution yourself, it is vital to remember that each situation is unique, including the treatment plan. 

Keep that in mind, next time you find an area of concern. Call us to schedule a mold inspection. As experts in our field, we can thoroughly analyze the situation and develop a comprehensive and customized treatment plan. Our goal is to help you create a healthy environment without getting hung up on who does what. We’ll explain the construction that needs to be done to correct the sources of the problem. The choice of how it gets done is up to you.

insurance coverage for mold

Insurance Coverage for Mold

Mold can be caused by a plethora of things, whether it be burst pipes, weather, or water-related (humidity) mold can spread quickly and no one wants to find it in their home or business! But if the dreaded day does come, what will your insurance cover?

So, what exactly is mold?
Mold is a fungus that can grow quickly in damp and dark places such as basements, attics, crawl spaces or inside of walls. There are lots of different kinds, millions and millions, some are not good to come in contact with and can cause unfortunate reactions to humans. It can be hard to spot and since it grows so quickly, it can do a lot of damage in a small amount of time.

Insurance coverage for mold can be tricky and restricted. Insurance companies limit mold coverage because of so many lawsuits from their policy owners, so now coverage is narrow and very specific. The best route when choosing or looking over your policy is to make sure they cover damage, loss, and cleanup from fungus for a specified loss, as well as ensure it will specifically cover fungus caused by water damage since that is the most common kind. Since most policies will vary, it is important to speak with your agent and go over the terms and conditions that are covered by your policy, to make sure you’re up to date on what will be covered. If you are getting covered for a business, two other insurances that can help with mold-related problems, are environmental insurance and liability insurance, which can cover property damage and bodily injury.

We hope that mold is not a problem in your future, but if it is, give us a call and we will come out and help! Our mold removal process will be less disruptive and effective so that you are in a safer and cleaner environment.

mold allergies

Don’t Let Mold Allergies Dampen Your Summer Vacation!

mold allergiesPicture this: School is out, work hours have relaxed and it’s time to pick up for vacation. You—and maybe your family or friends—pile into the car, chasing the long daylight hours and relaxation. Maybe you head to the shore to sink your toes into the sand, body surf and spend evenings with a bonfire. Or, perhaps the lake is more your style. The mountains calling, you follow the lure to cooler temperatures, panoramic views and refreshing days paddling on the water.

That first day is glorious, but after a night in your picturesque lake house or shore home, bouts of congestion, headaches, sneezing, and feelings of itchy eyes, nose and/or throat set in. If that sounds familiar, it’s likely you have a mold allergy.
While symptoms, which also include runny or stuffy nose, postnasal drip, watery eyes, and dry skin, mimic the common cold and are often mistaken for it, if you’re on vacation, it could be a mold allergy.

Mold commonly grows in the places we most associate with fun, like beach houses, lake houses, and hotels in those areas, thanks to a warm, moist environment which allows mold to flourish.

While mold allergies are common in vacation spots, that shouldn’t stop you from going away. Take precautions when traveling, like picking hotels or rental homes that are newer, traveling with a small dehumidifier and properly caring for items like towels and swimsuits.

First and foremost, be sure to book a room away from an indoor pool—they’re a magnet for mold spores. If your room has a musty odor, the mold is probably present. Pack a dehumidifier, if you can, to lessen the feeling of dampness in the space. Inspect the bathroom for mold and mildew in the tiles and grout and the air conditioning filters.

Most importantly, plan ahead to see an allergist. If you or a loved one commonly experience symptoms on vacation, see a board-certified allergist at Allergy & Asthma Specialists ahead of your next trip. An allergist can help identify allergies by skin testing, a simple in-office procedure in which an allergist will apply a small amount of different fungi extracts to the patients’ skin. If the patient has a reaction, the allergist can confirm the specific allergens.

After skin testing, an allergist can determine an appropriate treatment plan. This may mean making lifestyle changes or taking prescription medicine to reduce the allergic reaction. Immunotherapy, including sublingual drops—custom formulated drops that help alter the body’s reaction to an allergen—are a great choice for their long-term effectiveness.
An allergist can also make recommendations for keeping your home, and other environments like vacation homes or hotels, clear of mold. By doing so, you can get back to enjoying the stretches of pristine white sands, salty air and glinting water without the worry.

Kalamazoo Flood May Leave Behind Unwanted Mold and Odor Issues

This time it set a new record high-water mark.
According to measurements taken by the
National Weather Service, the Kalamazoo
River began to swell the night of
Saturday, February 23, 2018, and
continued into early the next morning.
It reached 11.69 feet at 1:30 a.m. Sunday,
the highest the river has been since it crested
at 11.53 feet late Friday, February 22, 2018.
The Friday record surpassed a 1947 record
of 10.94 feet.

While the worst of the flooding is likely over,
the cleanup is just getting started, and many
are in the process of assessing damage
to their properties. City Manager Dexter Mitchell said some residences had 4 to 5 feet of
standing water inside. Most Lakewood-neighborhood residents were evacuated, as
flooding “extremely” impacted this area.

Kalamazoo residents are encouraged to visit for additional
information about flood safety and what to do before and after a flood event.
Break the Mold is available to assist those with flood damage. A careful inspection of
your home is a good place to start. Each home and situation has its particular
circumstances. After an inspection, a “Game Plan” can be developed. Then we can
begin making your home healthy and
safe once again.

Break the Mold offers an air-cleaning
process that uses a vapor/mist/fog to treat
harmful, invisible airborne mold mycotoxins
and spores.

Contact Break the Mold at 269-359-
0822 today for Mold Remediation & Odor
Elimination Services in Kalamazoo and
Portage, MI. Customers can access details

Mold Remediation & Mold Removal Services Grand Rapids MI

Mold Remediation & Mold Removal Services


Find Mold Remediation & Mold Removal Services in Grand Rapids MI. Some types of molds are dangerous to your health. Mold also causes damage to structures that it grows on. This is because mold penetrates porous surfaces and causes deeper damage. Hiring a professional mold remediation and removal service will ensure that your home or business is returned to its original safe, mold-free condition.  Break The Mold of Grand Rapids MI offers these services. Taking care of a mold problem early can save expensive repair or replacement of structures or surfaces that mold has damaged. Break the Mold treats mold invasions and removes mold safely.

Home and business owners in Grand Rapids, MI can find Break the Mold’s remediation & removal services at an affordable price. Break the Mold includes the following Grand Rapids areas:

  • Canonsburg
  • Caledonia
  • Ada
  • Rockford
  • Cedar Springs
  • Spring Lake
  • Grand Haven
  • Holland
  • Muskegon
  • West Olive
  • Byron Center
  • Dorr
  • Wayland
  • Allegan

Break the Mold will complete a thorough inspection of any Grand Rapids, MI area residential or commercial structure. This takes about 45 minutes. The certified technicians will determine a cost-effective mold remediation & removal plan that will be reviewed with the property owner.


It is essential to pinpoint the source of the mold. Often, some sort of water damage is found. Attics, basements and crawl spaces are commonly at higher risk for developing unwanted mold. With Mold Remediation & Removal Services around Grand Rapids, customers have the option of allowing Break The Mold to contact contractors that can swiftly repair any issues that caused the mold invasion. Leaky pipes, inadequate air circulation and roof damage are some of the more common situations that are found. Faulty water heaters, washing machines and broken water lines are some of the other reasons mold may thrive.

Property owners can get fast mold remediation and/or removal that is generally completed in one day. These specialized services include new techniques and advanced equipment to enable the rapid work time. This ensures that customers get a lower cost as the work time is dramatically reduced. Break The Mold uses the latest mold remediation techniques to get fantastic results. Customers only need to leave the building for a few short hours.

Try the hassle-free and effective service options that Break the Mold promises. The work is always guaranteed, so customers can relax and let these professional mold specialists handle the job. Break the Mold brings powerful equipment, ventilation fans and all necessary supplies to ensure that even unseen mold spores in the air will be taken care of. These measures are non-toxic, and the Break the Mold utilizes safe processes to get rid of mold that has taken up residence. Break The Mold delivers prompt service and stress-free mold treatments so customers can get on with their busy lives.

Along with mold removal, Break The Mold offers a convenient protective treatment that keeps mold from coming back in the future. This preventative surface treatment is water and mold resistant and is safely breathable. This is a highly recommended preventative treatment that gives long-lasting and permanent protection. The qualified mold removal and remediation services available in and near Grand Rapids Michigan by Break the Mold also include structural cleaning. These competent professionals can perform a biodegradable foam application that contains zero harmful substances. This is a deep clean treatment that results in a contaminant-free surface.

Break The Mold offers an air cleaning process that uses a vapor/mist/fog that treats harmful airborne mold mycotoxins and spores that are invisible. Customers can also elect appearance enhancement that will eliminate or reduce mold stains. Contact Break The Mold at 269-359-0822 for Mold Remediation & Removal Services Grand Rapids, MI today. Customers can access details at



Summertime summertime sum sum summertime….

What did you do while on summer vacation?

Go to the beach, take a trip, go camping, go to Cedar Point?

Well, the Mold Guy went up into people’s attics. The temperatures outside this summer were in the 80s and 90s. Add 20° to 60° to that and you’ve got the attic’s temperature. That means it could be 140° or more up there. That is for a typical attic space here in Michigan. 

And on top of that, I would be wearing a full-face mask and a Tyvek suit.

While this may not sound like fun to you, it is typical day for the Mold Guy.

Why do it, some might ask?

It’s not that it’s particularly fun, but mold cleanup is something that I feel I was born to do, and I am good at doing it.

But the real reason is that I really am passionate about helping people

probably because my mother taught me to be that way, and I always will be. I guess it’s my nature now.

It is important to have an attic inspection done in order to discover moisture issues and correct them before they lead to costly repairs.

  • Improper ventilation is a primary cause of increased moisture in the attic, leading to potential insulation damage, mold, mildew, and dry rot. Fiberglass loses up to 40% of its labeled R-value when outside temperatures fall to 20º F, and it loses 50% of its labeled R-value when outside temperatures exceed 85º F. On top of that, research shows that as little as a 4% increase in moisture/humidity will reduce the effectiveness of fiberglass insulation by as much as 80%, that means it costs as much as $367 annually ($5,505 over the life of a 15year mortgage), not to mention the cost of mold remediation, poor indoor air quality, and the possible replacement of the roof deck.
  • Improperly vented and overheated attics are a primary cause of premature aging of roofing materials, which can be costly. Prolonged exposure to extreme heat accelerates the aging of asphalt roofing products.
  • The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development indicates that “inadequate ventilation will lead to fungus growth and very costly repairs.”
  • If a roof’s life is 15 years instead of 30 due to improper ventilation, and the average cost of a new roof is $9,360, shingle replacement will cost an average of $312 annually, or $4,680 over 15 years.

Proper ventilation of attic space

  • Reduces the temperature in the attic
  • Prolongs the life of your roof
  • Reduces energy costs, and
  • Can help improve indoor air quality

Spring Mold Report

As spring approaches, so too does ‘Allergy Season’. While this should be a time to reconnect with the great outdoors, frolic in the fields and sing along with the songbirds, many of us find ourselves hidden away indoors, plagued with the sneezes and sniffles spring brings.

Many of us find that as winter gives way to summer, we are hit with an assortment of unpleasant symptoms, from a slightly tickly nose, all the way to sinus infections and dizziness. We stock up with all the very best treatments from the local drug store. Tissues in hand, we do our best to avoid exposure from the causes of our symptoms, often with little success.

So how to truly prevent these unpleasant spring-time complaints? Lock ourselves away from the open fields, blossoming plants and trees? Exercise on the treadmill, rather than the open road? So we avoid the fresh air and sunshine and we’re still plagued by the same symptoms—what gives? The true cause of our irritations may be closer to home; it may be mold in our home.

It is quite possible that our symptoms are caused by exposure to household mold. Mold spores can linger in the air and affect our respiratory systems both while we are awake, and while we are asleep. Mold allergies often lie undetected, and are frequently misdiagnosed as a common cold or seasonal allergies. This affects everyone–adults as well as small children. Also, many of us suffering from mold allergies tend to already suffer from other allergies and chemical sensitivities. Sometimes it’s hard to see the forest for the trees.

So why don’t we realize that mold is causing our issues? One of the reasons could be that mold comes in all shapes and sizes. There’s much more to it than traditional black spot mold, or the green fuzzy stuff we’ve seen in the fridge. It grows in a spectrum of colors too. Black, green, gray, white, pink and yellow molds are the most common. Mold transfers easily from surface to surface and can destroy furniture and upholstery, often from within. While some mold can be wiped clean, others take a stronger hold on our beloved possessions, and our health. Even the very cleanest homes can be plagued by returning mold.

When mold grows in dark and damp locations, such as under the sink or under the stairs, it can often go undetected until our homes are riddled with spores. By this time you may think it’s too late, but your mold problem can be fixed.  Sometimes, no matter how thorough our cleaning, we don’t realize there is a mold issue in our home. And sometimes our homes need a little more TLC than a spring cleaning to rid us of our new-found foe.

If you think mold is affecting your health, or are worried about your symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor. Equally important, if you suspect a mold issue, don’t risk your health; schedule an inspection with the Moldguy at Break the Mold.