How much does it cost to safely mitigate the problem?
Asbestos was once a widespread component of building materials, some ofwhich may still be in an older home. If you plan to remodel, you may disturbasbestos-containing materials, so it’s a good idea to be aware of their presence.The good news is that asbestos has long been recognized as a potential healthproblem, so it is easily detected and removed.
If the home was built before 1978, when asbestos was banned from use in homes,it is a good idea to have an asbestos inspection. An asbestos inspection is notautomatically included in an inspection by a Texas Real Estate CommissionLicensed inspector.
The hazards of asbestos are fairly widely known–their small pointed fibers canlodge in lung tissue.
Some people work the fibers out of their system. Others suffer enough irritation from these asbestos fibers to eventually cause cancer, emphysema, and other diseases.
Not all asbestos in a home needs to be removed. If it is notcrumbling or friable or won’t be disturbed by your remodeling project, you MIGHT be able to leave it there. It isonly when the fibers get loose in the air that they cause problems. Youneed to consult a professional before deciding this.
If asbestos is enclosed, the fibersusually are not released into the air and therefore present no immediate hazard.
Asbestos wrapped pipesthat are sound can be protected from future damage by being enclosed in walls orhaving boxes put around them.
However, asbestos wrapped ducts should be removed, both ductsand asbestos wrapping, because ducts are not airtight.
Asbestos materials in good shape oftencan be “encapsulated” by an asbestos abatement contractor to add a layer ofprotection. This involves coating asbestos with a heat-resistant paint orsealant (approved by the EPA) that creates a protective barrier and convertssurface fibers into a safer form.
We recommend removal because encapsulating can be temporary and it isalmost as expensive as removal, depending on the project. It may even make laterremoval more difficult.
Asbestos is much easier to remove than mold because: 1. It does not "grow" or spread as mold does. 2. Since asbestos is a well-recognized health problem, the infrastructure for testing andabetment is well established.
Warning: Don’t do asbestos removal or encapsulation yourself. Asbestos is definitely and always a job for a professional
Do you need an energy consultant, energy auditor, green builder, or green remodeler in North Central Texas or the Dallas-Fort Worth area? Are you purchasing or building a home? Ready to add renewable-energy? Interested in living more sustainably? Contact Terry Jensen Frugal Energy, LLC 972 251-1532 or 817 443-2553 Just have a question or two? Please call. If I can answer without seeing your home or business, I will do so at no charge.
Green Remodeling 972 251-1532 or 817 443-2553
Subscribe to free Dallas-Fort Worth Green Remodeling e-newsletter.
Sent periodically with home remodeling news and information. Also includes calendar of green events and classes.
Note: The opinions expressedherein are exclusively those of the writers or other participants and do not necessarily reflect theposition of CyberParent. They are not intended to take the place of advice of ahealth, legal, or other professional whose expertise you might need to seek.