Indoor Air Quality (IAQ)

Materials used in building construction and conditions resulting from property damage, or even poor maintenance and upkeep, can result in indoor air pollution that could jeopardize a person's health. Many of the sources of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) problems (i.e. formaldehyde, mold, radon, etc.) can be easily prevented and corrected by simple measures. Therefore, to help homeowners and business owners recognize and correct problems they may be experiencing, the following sources have been pulled together for easy access to useful information and answers to solve indoor air pollution. The information consists of guidance on most IAQ issues and associations of professional consultants should these services be desired or needed. Authorization and resources do not allow the MDEQ to visit homes and businesses to test for indoor pollution, but the agency is striving to be of assistance through the information it is making available here.

“How to Request Your Landlord to Make Repairs Under the Mississippi Residential Landlord Act”: pdf

For additional guidance from Mississippi Legal Services on Housing Issues, click HERE.

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Hide details for About Mold and other Indoor PollutantsAbout Mold and other Indoor Pollutants

Show details for Air DuctsAir Ducts

Hide details for Air CleanersAir Cleaners
For EPA's opionion about Ozone Generators, click HERE

Show details for AsbestosAsbestos

Hide details for Asthma & AllergiesAsthma & Allergies

Information on Asthma and Allergies is available from the following organization (just click on the name)

Show details for Biological contaminantsBiological contaminants

Show details for Carbon Monoxide (CO)Carbon Monoxide (CO)

Hide details for Fireplaces, Wood stoves, Wood heaters, Wood boilersFireplaces, Wood stoves, Wood heaters, Wood boilers
The major pollutants released from these sources are carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, and fine particles. Unvented kerosene heaters may also generate acid aerosols. (Recent regulatory requirements require wood boilers to be no closer than 100 ft from a residence).
To read an EPA introductory booklet and this topic, click HERE .

Hide details for FormaldehydeFormaldehyde
  • To read an EPA introductory booklet and this topic, click HERE.
  • A Consumer Product Safety Commission document on Formaldehyde, click HERE .
Note on mobile homes, travel trailers and cottages:
Formaldehyde is a common ingredient in pressed-wood products, including particle board, and can cause eye, nose, and throat irritation, wheezing and coughing, fatigue, skin rashes, headaches, nosebleeds, and severe allergic reactions.. Formaldehyde levels are generally much higher in the warmer months. Good ventilation can dilute and reduce levels quite a bit.

Hide details for Household Cleaning Chemicals and SpraysHousehold Cleaning Chemicals and Sprays
Safe household cleaners
  • EPA Green Seal recommended products, click HERE.
  • Melaleuca safe cleaning products -- 1-800-282-3000 , click HERE.
  • Green Works™ natural cleaners, click HERE.
  • Healthy Child product recommendations, click HERE.
  • Rochester Midland Corp. -- products for industry and school use, 1-800-836-1633, click HERE.

Hide details for InsulationInsulation
Symptoms from Fiberglass will typically go away after being removed or encapsulated. Fiberglass is not regulated and is widely used, but should not be breathed. There are some alternatives to fiberglass insulation (such as polyester and sheet foam). One technical paper concluded that wet spray-applied cellulose insulation (typically 30-40% water), when used in the walls of indoor environments, can become very moldy and result in unacceptable risk to occupants. It is recommended that fiberglass insulation be kept neatly contained (not hanging out) and use proper personal protective equipment to avoid exposure during installation or maintenance activities. Replace ceiling panels and repair disconnected ventilation ducts if needed.

Show details for LeadLead

Hide details for MoldMold
Hayfever-like symptoms such as stuffiness, throat irritation, coughing or wheezing, eye irritation, or, in some cases, skin irritation may be the result of a high concentration of mold spores. In worse cases Mycotoxins from molds has been linked to symptoms like headaches, nasal irritation, dizziness, fatigue, and nausea.

Mold needs water and a food source (building materials) to grow. If one removes the water and moisture and keeps it dry, the mold cannot grow.
  • MS Department of Health webpage on Mold: html
  • Center for Disease Control site webpage on Mold: html
  • Mold and Dampness: Guidance from CDPH, html
  • "Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings" - An EPA booklet: html
  • Mold Toxins (Mycotoxins) and Black Mold - Guidance from the CDC: html
  • To see EPA's information on this topic, click HERE.
  • An online EPA introductory course on Mold, click HERE.
  • Pictures of MOLD (find and Select "View the Mold Slide Show" down on the right side of screen). The Images available at this site give examples of trouble spots & cleanup apparatus.

  • An EPA booklet: "Flood Cleanup: Avoiding Indoor Air Quality Problems," Click HERE.
  • An EPA booklet: "A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture and your Home," Click HERE.
  • Book: "Clean Up Procedures for Mold In Houses", can be found at: EEBA Bookstore

Note on Mobile homes.
Water may leak from the metal siding or roof (those that do not have shingles). Any exposed nail or screw in metal siding should be sealed so water does not seep into the wall cavities. Some walls have no barrier between the outer metal siding and inner dry wall sheeting to resist moisture. If a leak is suspected, it may be worthwhile to check the inner wall cavity for mold and correct any problems as soon as possible.

Show details for PesticidesPesticides

Hide details for RadonRadon

U.S. Surgeon General Health Advisory

"Indoor radon gas is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the United States and breathing it over prolonged periods can present a significant health risk to families all over the country.  It's important to know that this threat is completely preventable.  Radon can be detected with a simple test and fixed through well-established venting techniques."  January 2005

A Citizen's Guide to Radon: The Guide to Protecting Yourself and Your Family from Radon
To see this EPA booklet online, click HERE

"Home Buyer's and Seller's Guide to Radon"
To see this EPA booklet online, click HERE

One may also call the Radon hotline number at the National Safety Council
(800) SOS-RADON or (800) 55-RADON

Compared to other states, most of Mississippi has a low predictive indoor radon screening. Radon levels in Alcorn, Union, Pontotoc, Lee, Chickasaw, Clay, Lowndes, and Noxubee have a medium predictive level.
To view radon maps of any state click HERE

Discounted radon test kits are available from the National Safety Council - 1-800-SOS-RADON ;
Read the section in "A Citizen's Guide to Radon" listed above for a discussion on how to get reliable radon test results.

Schools: The Indoor Radon Program in Mississippi provides free screening for schools in participating areas. Call 1-800-626-7739 or (601) 987-6893.

Hide details for Smoke (Tobacco Smoke and Second hand smoke)Smoke (Tobacco Smoke and Second hand smoke)
Aside from adding a decade to appearance, graying and wrinkling skin, becoming a gruff baritone, morning coughing, staining, stinching, and other annoyances, smoking can have some devastating health affects on everyone in the house especially if combined with other types of air pollution. Refer to the following sites for more information.

Show details for Vapor IntrusionVapor Intrusion
Hide details for Resources for ResearchResources for Research
Show details for EPA ResourcesEPA Resources
Show details for Publications on Multiple IAQ TopicsPublications on Multiple IAQ Topics
Hide details for Organizations that Address Indoor Air IssuesOrganizations that Address Indoor Air Issues
Show details for BooksBooks
Hide details for Consultants and LaboratoriesConsultants and Laboratories
Before having an inspector test your home for Mold, please read the following article: click HERE .
  • For a list of inspectors certified by the American Council for Accredited Certification (ACAC), click HERE.
  • For a list of inspectors certified by the Environmental Solutions Association (ESA), click HERE.
  • For a list of inspectors certified by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), click HERE and Select: "Locate an Industrial Hygienist"
Hide details for Businesses, Inspection and ServicesBusinesses, Inspection and Services

Clean Air Services, Inc. – Biological Air Duct Cleaning Specialist
2562 Beach Blvd., Suite 1302
Biloxi, MS 39531
    983 Bonhomie Rd.
    Hattiesburg, MS 39401
228-323-0347 (cell)
Hancock County 1– 228-255-6861
    Nationwide 1-866-444-4AIR
    Certified Indoor Environmentalist, Certified Mold Remediators, Qualified cleaning technicians/
    HVAC system decontamination and mold remediation.

MAHI Mississippi Association of Home Inspectors
Licensed Mississippi Home Inspector #0101
Professional Home Inspections * Hazardous Material Testing

Yellow pages search – Key words: i.e. “Environmental”, “Indoor”, “Mold”.

Hide details for RemediationRemediation
T.M. Harkins Jr.
Council-certified Microbial Remediator
701 Avignon Dr. Suite 101
Ridgeland, MS 39157
Telephone: 601-898-3447

EarthCon Consultants, Inc.
Commercial and Residential
110 Weisenberger Road
Madison, MS 39130
Telephone: 601-853-2134
Toll Free Number: 866-450-2169

HAZCLEAN Environmental Consultants, Inc.
Commercial and Residential
160 Upton Drive
Jackson, MS 39209
Telephone: 601-922-0766

Yellow pages search – Key words: i.e. “Environmental”, “Indoor”, “Mold”.
Hide details for LaboratoriesLaboratories
Bonner Analytical Testing CO
2703 Oak Grove Road, Hattiesburg, MS 39402
(601) 264-2854
This company has many certifications and ability to analyze a wide range of pollutants from VOC’s, ultra low mercury, and pesticides. Visit their website for more information.

Micro-Methods Incorporated
6500 Sunplex Dr.
Ocean Springs, MS 39564
(228) 875-6420
This company specializes in asbestos, lead, water, and mold sampling. An inspector will take samples from your site (or home) and get it analyzed at this lab (or through an associate lab); then send a detailed report

EMSL Analytical, Inc.
There are no EMLS laboratories in Mississippi; the closest EMSL laboratory is in Baton Rouge and Atlanta. The preferred way to contact them is through the contact page on their website. You can order canisters and do-it-yourself testing with sample devices that can be ordered. EMSL is sometimes often used by inspectors or other labs for about anything you need to analyze in your indoor environment.

Hide details for Legal MattersLegal Matters

  • “How to Request Your Landlord to Make Repairs Under the Mississippi Residential Landlord Act”: pdf
  • For additional guidance from Mississippi Legal Services on Housing Issues, click HERE
  • For legal advice you may also call the Mississippi Bar at 1-800-682-6423 to get a referral for an attorney
Hide details for Related IAQ TopicsRelated IAQ Topics

Hide details for Training and CertificationTraining and Certification
  • American Council for Accredited Certification, Click HERE.
  • National Center for Healthy Housing (Formerly the National Center for Lead-Safe Housing), Click HERE
  • Free online course: "Introduction to Mold & Mold Remediation for Environmental and Public Health Professionals", Click HERE.
Hide details for Office Building EnvironmentsOffice Building Environments
  • Ventilation and Air Quality in Offices, click HERE
  • Guidance for Office Buildings and Large Buildings in general, click HERE
  • Sick Buildings - find a fact sheet HERE
  • Guidance for Building Owners and Facility Managers, click HERE
  • Additional guidance for Building and Facility Managers, click HERE
Hide details for Building and RemodelingBuilding and Remodeling
  • EPA's "Indoor airPlus" program site: for guidance and recommended specs for good indoor planning and construction, Click HERE.

Making a Home Addition topics:
  • Protecting your home, Click HERE.
  • Remodeling: Areas of your house to consider, Click HERE.
  • Remodeling Best Practices, Click HERE.

"Home Owner's Inspection Checklist" (for when purchasing a home): , Click HERE.
Hide details for Flood CleanupFlood Cleanup
  • EPA online booklet: "Flood Cleanup: Avoiding Indoor Air Quality Problems," Click HERE.
Hide details for Legal MattersLegal Matters
  • “How to Request Your Landlord to Make Repairs Under the Mississippi Residential Landlord Act”: pdf
  • For additional guidance from Mississippi Legal Services on Housing Issues, click HERE
  • For legal advice you may also call the Mississippi Bar at 1-800-682-6423 to get a referral for an attorney.

For More Information Contact Bryan Williams 601.961.5799
Or Air Toxics Branch