October 27, 2011

How to Tell If You Have Asbestos Tiles

Asbestos is a dangerous material that has been linked to cancer. Asbestos was banned in the 1970s, but homes built before then can still have asbestos tiles in them. You need to have asbestos professionally tested for and removed, since it is a highly dangerous substance, especially in powder form that can be inhaled into the lungs. If you suspect that your home has asbestos tiles in it, look for these warning signs and then contact a professional testing and removal company to get it out of your home.

Consider the age of your home. If your home was built between 1900 and 1970 you should have your home tested, as there is a chance that it could contain asbestos tiles. You're most likely to find it in insulation, ceiling tiles and flooring. Homes built between 1930 and 1950 are at the greatest risk of containing asbestos.

Look for signs of wear on the tiles. Tiles in good condition carry little risk for asbestos contamination, but if you notice tiles that are cracked and emitting a powdery substance, call a removal professional right away.

Consider the size of the tiles and measure them. Asbestos tiles were commonly 9-by-9 inches and if you note that your tiles are that size, you should be wary of their asbestos content.

Contact a testing facility to come and take a sample of the material to discern chemically whether or not it is asbestos. Only a test can confirm if a material is truly asbestos. While you can look for warning signs, you can be sure with a lab test.

Tips & Warnings

Never handle a material that you believe to contain asbestos until you've had it tested.