How to Spot Asbestos When Completing Home Improvement Projects

You loved the pulley and sash window system that went out of production after World War II, and the glass doorknobs will never go out of style in your heart. However now, you are embarking on some restoration and renovation projects, and you might be curious about what risk factors you are going to run into. Products containing asbestos have been used in homes since the 1800s and were used for boiler insulation, roofing, and all throughout many homes for their heat-resistant and flame-retardant qualities.

Today, some of those gorgeous accents that add charm to your home could be dangerous risk factors to mesothelioma, cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Even if your home isn’t home to war-time era closets, home construction didn’t stop using asbestos until the 1990s.

Where is Asbestos Found?

In some homes, asbestos is minimal, in others, it’s everywhere. The EPA has put restrictions on its use because disturbing it when you are renovating could increase your risk factors for mesothelioma. The EPA estimates that 30 million tons of asbestos were used between 1900 and 1980.

The most common areas it is found are:

  • Insulation that uses vermiculite
    • Vinyl tiling
    • Shingles
    • Textured paint, popcorn ceilings
    • Areas around wood-burning stoves
    • Heating insulation, including boilers, and coal or oil furnaces

There could be other areas of the home with asbestos, but these are the most common ones.

How to Spot Asbestos in the Home

If you are concerned about asbestos exposure, call an asbestos abatement professional for help. They can help you remove the asbestos in your home and help you find out who is responsible. Asbestos exposure even with a disclosure from the previous owner or agent who sold the home could mean a liability issue for you. You may be entitled to some damages. Spotting it on your own is tricky, and removing it on your own is dangerous and exposes you to so many more risk factors for cancer.

Most asbestos components have wells that enclose the product for safety purposes. But if you are thinking of a component from 1800, its condition is going to be risky at best. If you break or smash something in your home to remodel and see a white substance that appears fibrous, it’s time to call an expert. You might already see substances such as this around common asbestos areas such as the boiler insulation or near your HVAC system.

This can be either contained, or removed, but you can’t do it alone.

Call for Help for Asbestos Exposure

When you are remodeling or restoring a charming home, you need to be careful, or you will put yourself at risk for asbestos exposure. There is a chance you’ve already been exposed if you have lived there for some time. Being around asbestos for a long period of time is one of the most dangerous risk factors for the deadly cancer of mesothelioma.

Make a list of a number of professionals to help you deal with this problem so that you can get back to loving your old house. A lawyer that specializes in mesothelioma or asbestos problems is a great number to put on that list. They often work on contingency and thus would require no money upfront. It will never hurt to just ask them if you have a case for a liability claim if you’ve been exposed to asbestos without your knowledge, as most people are.

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