How Not To Remove Asbestos

By now most homeowners know that asbestos, once widely used in a massive variety of building materials, is toxic to humans and animals and linked to serious health problems. What you may not know about asbestos is that its incredible durability has allowed it to remain in many older homes, even today, in a variety of forms. Everything from the insulation in your attic to the tile floors in your basement could contain asbestos. If you're wondering what you should do, read on.

Don't Panic

Upon learning that their home likely contains the material responsible for terminal illnesses like mesothelioma, many people immediately freak out and make mistakes like the ones listed below. Take a deep breath, because the first thing you should know about asbestos is that the worst thing you can do to it is mess with it in a nervous panic. Asbestos was used in so many different building materials because it is hardy and difficult to destroy. It is incredibly fire resistant and durable, and it only becomes a health hazard if you breathe in the fibers. Don't disturb any material you believe could contain asbestos until you've consulted with a professional. Common materials containing asbestos are insulation, textured paint, floor tiles, and siding tiles.

Just having asbestos in your home is not a health risk, so if you discover asbestos, keep calm and call for an assessment. 

Don't Hire Just Anyone

If you discover that you do have asbestos in your home, the next thing you should know is that not everyone is capable or qualified to handle asbestos properly. While many people have worked with asbestos in some capacity over the years, only a few have bothered to get the proper certification to allow them to handle asbestos. It is illegal for Joe Schmoe to remove asbestos from your home, because improper handling may release asbestos fibers into the air and create a health hazard. Improper disposal is also a problem, since asbestos dumped into a landfill could also become a health hazard. Only those companies certified in the safe handling of asbestos should be involved in the removal and disposal of the asbestos material, so be careful who you hire. Ask to see their certification and only proceed once you know they are capable of safely removing and disposing of the asbestos.

Don't Try to DIY

There is no such thing as DIY asbestos removal. While you may feel like the risks are worth the cost savings, it is not only strongly discouraged with lots of legal red tape, but it can land you in serious trouble. Fines and criminal charges can be leveled against you, not to mention the fact that you could be putting yourself, your loved ones, and even your neighbors at risk. Don't be that person. Asbestos abatement may seem like it comes with a steep price tag, but paying the cost is worth it to avoid the trouble attempting to do it yourself could cause. So don't renovate until you've confirmed it's safe, and if you do encounter asbestos, call in a pro instead of trying to sneak around to save a few bucks. 

As you can see, there are a lot of wrong ways to go about asbestos removal. Panicking and disturbing the material, hiring the wrong person, or skipping the hiring process and attempting a DIY asbestos removal are all bad ideas. The right way to handle learning you have asbestos is to make a few phone calls, get a couple of bids, and have a qualified company remove and dispose of the asbestos for you in a safe and legal manner. If you need more information, contact a localasbestos removal company.