What to Do If You Find Asbestos in Your Home…
Asbestos was used in homes and other from 1990 and older. It was ideal at the time because it was good for soundproofing, had a decent tensile strength, and was pretty much resistant to heat, electrical and chemical damage. We now know that asbestos can be very harmful to your health, as it has been known to cause malignant lung cancer, mesothelioma (a type of rare cancer) and asbestosis (which is a type of pneumoconiosis).
So, if you find asbestos in your home, what should you do?
- The Effects. Asbestos releases particles when it is cut, drilled, broken or disturbed in any way. These particles are the most dangerous part about asbestos; and if they are inhaled in you can get sick. So if you are conducting renovations or anything of the sort, you should test to see if you have asbestos in your home.
- Materials? Asbestos is found in insulation such as vermiculite or zonolite, on ducting around furnaces, popcorn textured coatings on ceilings, in drywall compound, lathe and plaster on walls, it can be present in exterior stucco and siding, also in vct tiles and lino flooring.
- Leave it alone. If you are unsure if you may or may not have asbestos in your home, the best thing to do is leave it alone until you are sure. In this case, it is definitely better to be safe than sorry, so follow the next two steps before you start renovating.
- Get it tested. The best way to figure out if you have asbestos in your home or not is to get it tested. Contact an asbestos remediation company, they usually do testing as well. Asbestos can only be identified with a laboratory test – so no tasting it or basing your finds on the colour either.
- Call an asbestos remediation/abatement company. These certified companies have the experience, knowledge and equipment to remove all the asbestos from your home so you can go ahead with your remodeling – or just give you peace of mind. Most asbestos remediation/abatement companies can provide testing services as well.
If you live in a home built before 1990, you should definitely look into the possibility of there being asbestos in your home. Before you pick up that hammer or cut a hole in your wall, ensure that it is safe for you to do so.