It’s important to understand the dangers of asbestos during home improvement projects and how to reduce exposure risks.
As a homebuyer, it’s easy to understand the appeal of investing in an older home. It’s the perfect opportunity to tackle a few DIY renovations and projects to give the place the custom touch you’ve always imagined. This can seem like an exciting endeavor, new owners may get ahead themselves without realizing their house may be harboring toxins from decades ago.
Measuring Your Risk
Asbestos is only considered dangerous when contaminated materials have been worn down or damaged which unfortunately, is a standard part of most renovation or remodeling work.
The mineral is heavily regulated today, but millions of people are still vulnerable to exposure due to its expansive use in residential homes and buildings.
Researchers concluded in 1960 that asbestos exposure could cause a wide range of long-term diseases, including asbestosis, lung cancer, and the often fatal form of cancer known as mesothelioma. As more tradesmen came forward with asbestos-related illnesses, this mineral became known as a primary source of occupational cancer.
Asbestos is a natural silicate mineral that was revolutionary for the building trade until its carcinogenic nature was discovered. Once widely-used by the construction industry due to its resilience and ability to withstand chemicals and high temperatures, this toxin was. Its health risks were discovered as early as the 1920s, the United States continued producing, importing and manufacturing asbestos-containing consumer products for decades.
Any sanding, grinding, sawing, drilling, buffing, or physical impact may cause these fibers to become airborne and easily ingested or inhaled by anyone in the general proximity.
What Homeowners Need to Know
As a homebuyer, it’s easy to understand the appeal of investing in an older home. This can seem like an exciting endeavor, new owners may get ahead themselves without realizing their house may be harboring toxins from decades ago.
Unlike floor tiles and cement that must endure long-term deterioration before asbestos fibers are loosened, the slightest amount of pressure can instantly release these fibers, allowing them to be carried throughout the air and dust indoors.
Asbestos is known to be a significant threat when it is “friable,” meaning it can be easily crumbled or crushed by hand. Once contained friable asbestos and have been found within residential homes today, spray-on insulation and spray-on ceiling textures are prime examples of products that.
Do not panic and try to remove any materials you think are toxic, as this will only do more harm than good.
Restrict anyone from going near the area until a professional can take samples to confirm it contains asbestos. The licensed professional can safely remove the toxin from your home if the toxin is present and appears to be hazardous.
Asbestos is nearly impossible to identify on your own because it’s often mixed within building products, but it is possible to identify a hazardous situation and take appropriate preventative action.
Asbestos is a natural silicate mineral that was revolutionary for the building trade until its carcinogenic nature was discovered. Before getting involved with any sort of home improvement project, you should always double-check that your property has been recently inspected by a trained professional. This simple step is especially important if you reside in a home built more than 40 years ago and has visible signs of aging.
Instead, block off the area and avoid any activity, including sweeping or vacuuming, which can exacerbate the situation and cause toxic dust and debris to travel even further throughout the house.
Before getting involved with any sort of home improvement project, you should always double-check that your property has been recently inspected by a trained professional. If you reside in a home built more than 40 years ago and has visible signs of aging, this simple step is especially important. This bit of precaution could save you from developing an asbestos-related illness years later.
You should be aware of common products that have a history of containing the toxin and monitor their condition for any sort of wear and tear. Keep an eye on old insulation, ceiling tiles, vinyl flooring, joint compounds, door gaskets, furnaces, roof shingles, electrical wiring, fireproof products, and more.