Deciding If You Need Asbestos Abatement

As most homeowners are already aware, asbestos is a dangerous building component, which when inhaled can lead to lung cancer. If you have asbestos components in your home, they may not necessarily pose a risk; in fact, they only pose a risk if they have the potential to become airborne. Thus, if you move into an older home, you will need to investigate your home and decide whether you need to undertake asbestos abatement.

What Materials Are Friable?

Any asbestos containing materials that can be crumbled are considered friable. Once crumbled, the asbestos particles can then become airborne, and this is where they pose a health risk. Floor tiles, roofing shingles, or gaskets may contain some asbestos and yet pose no threat if the material around the asbestos is solid enough to keep the asbestos in place. Thus, if you have old tiles in your house that contain asbestos, you don't need to rush to remove the tiles. On the other hand, if you have insulation in your house that contains asbestos, the loose, fibrous nature of the insulation makes it more likely to break down and become airborne. 

What to Do to Remove Asbestos?

In order to safely handle asbestos, you have to do everything you can to prevent it from getting airborne. For starters, you will need to wrap the building in question with plastic sheeting that will prevent any asbestos that gets airborne from contaminating the air for passersby. You will then need to make sure that anyone who works in the house has a respirator and a way to remove asbestos from their work clothes. You will also need to break down any materials in your house that contain asbestos in such a way that they are damaged as little as possible. This will reduce the risk of asbestos separating from the materials and getting airborne. Finally, you need a way to wrap up the asbestos materials so that they don't break down in transit or once they reach the disposal site. 

While the steps described above do not sound super complicated. Only one small mistake can make all the difference when it comes to keeping you and your home safe. While you might be tempted to attempt your own asbestos abatement, you owe it yourself and your family to take every possible precaution. Thus, your best choice is to leave the asbestos abatement up to highly trained, government certified professionals. 

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