What is Asbestos?
- A mineral fiber used in over 3000 products. The products can be characterized as either friable (a material that can be crumbled into a power by hand pressure like pipe insulation) or non-friable (a material that cannot be crumbled into a powder by hand pressure like exterior siding and floor covering).
What are some common materials that could contain asbestos?
- Floor Covering Adhesives
- Patch and Joint Compounds
- Textured Ceiling Paint
- Acoustical Plaster
- Furnace Ducts
- Exterior Siding
- Plaster WAlls
- Heat Pipes
- Ceiling Tiles
- Floor Tiles
- Window Caulking
- Window Glazing
- Furnace Duct Connectors
- Paper Boilers
- Interior/Exterior Pipe Coverings
- Roof Shingles
- Roof Cement
Is there a time period of when my home was built that I should be concerned if looking to do any remodeling or demolition?
- Many older homes built before the mid-1970s do have some type of asbestos-containing materials.
What do I do if I suspect that I may be at risk?
- If the asbestos-containing material is in good shape and will not be disturbed, do nothing!
- If there is any type of damage such as tears, abrasions, or water damage there are two type of corrections: repair and removal.
- Repair: usually involves either sealing or covering the abestos material
- Removal: usually the most expensive method and, unless required by state or local regulation, should be the last option considered in most situations, as removal poses the greatest risk of fiber release.
What are some things that may require removal?
- It may be required when remodeling or making major changes to your home that will disturb asbestos material. Since abestos containing materials can only be determined by laboratory testing prior to remodeling or major changes, the Department of Public Health recommends that the home be inspected by a Connecticut Licensed Abestos Inspector.
Can a building or home inspector make the determination of asbestos in the home?
- No, they are not qualified unless he or she is licensed by the Department of Public Health as an Asbestos Inspector or Inspector/Management Planner.
I'm looking to buy a new home, how will I know if I'm at risk for a home built with asbestos containing material?
- Information regarding the presence of this material must be included in the seller's property disclosure report. If there has been abatement, the project documentation provided by the contractor must also be included as part of the disclosure report.
What are the health effects of asbestos exposure?
- Most people exposed to small amounts of asbestos do not develop health problems. However, if disturbed, asbestos material may release fibers, which can be inhaled into the lungs. Asbestos material that crumbles easily or has been sawed, scraped, or sanded into a powder is more likely to create a health problem. Asbestos can cause: lung cancer, mesothelioma, abestos. People who get asbestosis have usually been exposed to high levels for a long period of time. the symptoms of these diseases do not usually appear until 20 to 30 years later.
- Proper inspection and handling of such materials is key to preventing the harmful side effects of asbestos exposure. It is extremely important that the contractor be licensed by the Department of Public Health.