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When Is It Time for Asbestos Abatement in Your Home?

by | May 10, 2022 | Asbestos

When Is It Time for Asbestos Abatement in Your Home?

If you have an older home, there’s a good chance that it contains asbestos. Asbestos is a mineral fiber previously used in construction because of its fire-resistance and strength.

It’s linked to serious health problems, so it’s important to take steps to remove it from your home. Let’s discuss when asbestos abatement is necessary.

If You’re Planning or Have Recently Renovated Your Home

Asbestos isn’t risky when undisturbed, no matter how old your home is. When fibers loosen and enter the air, you have a problem. I’m sure you’ve seen the countless legal ads about mesothelioma.

Renovation can disturb ductwork, wires, and pipes that contain asbestos, which is why people who have renovated a home that was built prior to the early 1980s might want to look into getting testing if not moving forward on abatement.

Asbestos in Your Home

These household materials could contain asbestos:

  • Flat corrugated roofing
  • Older ceilings that have asbestos sheets
  • 9″ x 9″ floor tiles
  • Vent covers
  • Duct and pipe covers
  • And more

If your home was built before the early 1980s, it’s best to call an asbestos abatement professional before renovations. If you’ve already renovated, have the home tested to ensure airborne particles aren’t harming you and your family.

Disintegrating Materials in the Home Could Contain Asbestos

If you buy a recently renovated home, that doesn’t mean that proper asbestos abatement has been completed. In fact, we recommend that you always assume that it hasn’t.

Removing asbestos insulation and other materials that contain harmful substances is expensive, and not all home flippers do it the right way.

The asbestos may be disturbed if you notice the materials around your pipes or ductwork, especially in the basement or attic, disintegrating or spotting. That means it’s time for testing.

It’s not worth it to wonder. Find out if there is asbestos that needs to be properly covered or removed.

Older Fireplace with Fake Embers Could Contain Asbestos

One of the reasons homebuilders used asbestos so readily is because it is extremely heat resistant. Because of that, builders of the past would use asbestos in fireplaces with fake embers or ashes in fireplaces. If you are buying a home with a feature like this, have it tested to be safe.

If You Have Symptoms of Asbestosis or Other Lung Problems

Much like we talked about with black mold in our last post, asbestos can cause severe health problems, which is why asbestos abatement exists. Two common ailments related to the substance are asbestosis and mesothelioma.

Asbestosis is a chronic lung disease linked to asbestos fibers, and mesothelioma is cancer linked to asbestos exposure. We recommend asbestos abatement so that nobody in your home experiences either of these conditions.

But if you have lived in a home for a long time, and you or a family member has the following symptoms, test for asbestos immediately:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing
  • General fatigue
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Chest pain

How To Spot Asbestos Before It Can Hurt You

Knowing what asbestos looks like can go a long way toward protecting you from its harmful effects. The appearance of asbestos can differ, depending on why it was used.

The underside of roofs, ceilings, and walls can contain sprayed asbestos, which looks like the foam from a fire extinguisher. Thermal insulation that contains asbestos was usually wrapped with paper and releases a lot of fiber when the paper ages.

Also look for decorative ceilings or walls, insulations on old circuit breakers, bitumen products, and more. If it looks old, it could have asbestos.

Types of Asbestos Fibers

To make sure you’re looking for the right thing, let’s look at the three types of asbestos fibers.

  • Chrysotile – these asbestos fibers are curly, white, and flexible. They account for more than 90% of asbestos fibers found in buildings
  • Tremolite – sharper fibers that range from white to dark green fibers. These flake easily and are easier to inhale
  • Amosite – brown, needle-thin fibers that are also easy to breathe in, and were widely used in the old days

If you think there is asbestos in your home, make sure you get it tested, and never touch or disturb it. Should you need asbestos abatement, call us today to make sure your family is safe and healthy.

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