Asbestos Disposal in Your Home
You likely know by now that asbestos is a dangerous substance, but did you know that you may have asbestos-containing components in your home? Older homes built prior to 1990 likely have some type of asbestos product contained in it whether it’s insulation, roofing or floor tiles, popcorn ceiling or drywall materials. You may also have some household items that contain asbestos. If you suspect you have asbestos in your home, your knee jerk may be to get it all out now, but this isn’t necessarily wise.
In part eight of our 12 part campaign to debunk asbestos myths, we’ll show you why your better bet may be to leave asbestos in your home alone – at least for now.
Myth – Asbestos in your home should be thrown out immediately.
Fact – Asbestos in your walls usually won’t hurt you unless it’s disturbed. But if you’re planning to cut into a wall or do any remodeling, it’s definitely a concern.
Fact – Asbestos is not something you can sweep up and take out with the trash or put on some gloves and a face mask and grab up and toss out.
Fact – Removing asbestos from your home is complicated and has a great potential to make you and your family sick if not done properly.
Fact – Asbestos that is in good condition is not likely to release fibers. It’s the release of dust and fibers into the air you breathe that poses health risks.
Fact – If you see damage to areas of your home that may contain asbestos – walls, ceiling tiles, floor tiles or insulation, you should treat it as if it is asbestos and contact a certified expert to test it and remove it, if necessary.
Fact – Sweeping, vacuuming or dusting loose asbestos can stir fibers up into the air your family breathes and put all your health at risk.
Fact – If you suspect your flooring has asbestos in it and it needs replaced, the EPA recommends you put new flooring materials down over it rather than trying to remove the asbestos material.
Fact – If any asbestos in your home is damaged, it must be repaired or removed by an accredited professional. To repair it, they can seal it in so fibers can’t be released or covered by a material that will block release of fibers.
Fact – If you have any older small appliances made prior to the 1980s, they may contain asbestos and these are items you can dispose of to get asbestos out of your home. Major appliances like an oven or furnace should be removed by an asbestos specialist.
Fact – Smaller appliances like irons or toasters can be disposed of safely by you in most cases. Contact your landfill to ask if they accept older appliances with asbestos and, if they don’t, contact an independent appliance store and ask for their assistance disposing of your older appliance.
Asbestos is nothing to tinker with personally. It may be tempting to want to get it all out of your home immediately, but this approach can actually put your family more at risk. If you or someone you love has been impacted by asbestos exposure and has mesothelioma, contact Bergman Draper Oslund.