2 Questions You May Have About Getting Your Old Home's Insulation Tested For Asbestos

Environmental Blog

After purchasing an older home, you may be concerned that it was built during a time when asbestos was frequently used as insulation. You may be concerned about whether or not the house could pose a serious health risk to you and your family.

Because of these concerns, you may be considering having the house tested, but you may have questions about it. Below are some answers to a couple of the questions that you may have about having your old house's insulation tested for asbestos.

1. Can You Tell Whether Your House Has Asbestos by Looking at the Materials?

Before you contact someone about testing your home, you could be wondering if you can tell by looking at the insulation whether or not it was fabricated using asbestos. Unfortunately, unless the insulation has the material explicitly written on its surface somewhere, you will not be able to identify its exact composition.

Even if you could make the determination, you should not disturb the insulation to inspect it on your own, as you could damage it and cause the fibers to become airborne. It is better to wait until someone with the proper certification, knowledge, and equipment required for testing for asbestos.

2. Does All Asbestos Need to Be Removed Immediately When Its Presence Is Confirmed?

Another question that you may have about asbestos testing may have to do with what you should do once its presence is confirmed. Do you need to have the insulation stripped out of your walls as soon as possible?

If the insulation is intact and is not at risk of becoming wet or damaged, you may not need to have it removed. If you are concerned about it, you may be able to have it encapsulated instead. Once the inspector confirms the insulation is made from asbestos, they can guide you in finding further resources.

Even if your older home does have asbestos insulation in its walls, you may not need to have it removed right away. However, since you cannot visually identify the material just by looking at it, you need to know for sure whether asbestos is present in case you notice it is starting to break down, or if you plan to remodel your home at some point in the future. For more information about what is involved in testing for asbestos, contact a company that provides the service to speak with a certified inspector.


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