Further information on MVOC

MVOC (microbial volatile organic compounds)

Mould formation can result in the release of volatile organic compounds. The detection of MVOCs in the air therefore represents a means of providing evidence of hidden (not visible) mould infestation in buildings. MVOCs are gaseous and, from hidden sources in cavities, ceilings and floor areas, can penetrate interior spaces more easily than mould spores that are filtered, for example, by air samplers when providing direct evidence of mould infestation.

MVOCs are divided into primary and secondary indicators. Compounds which are considered as indicators should be clearly distinguished from compounds that could arise from other sources in interior spaces. A thorough on-site inspection, for example, to record any other possible sources not related to mould, is therefore essential in order to enable correct interpretation of the results.

In addition to MVOC measurements, we can also measure the culturable mould in the air (air germ collection) or in the dust. Such measurements can also be taken at the same time as the MVOC measurement.


Measurement of MVOCs in indoor air by APC

Sampling with Anasorb 747 activated carbon tube, sampling duration of 2 to 8 hours (depending on local conditions).

If the measurement is to provide more precise information about the possible sources and the structural and organisational conditions are suitable, the room in question should be aired 10-12 hours in advance and then be kept closed (windows, doors, air conditioning switched off). Measurements can then be taken in working operations or shortly after, e.g. in office rooms, if irritations (odours, etc.) have been reported during working operations.

In addition to the purely analytical data, the measurement report also contains explanations relating to the detected substances and their concentration levels. The correct interpretation of the measurement results with regard to the possible sources and the associated complaints possibly caused by the detected substances usually requires many years of experience in the field, which is where we come in.


Back to: Moulds/MVOC