Asbestos Health Hazards, Testing and Removal
Chicago Home Inspections Services, First Choice Home Inspectors, LLC, reports on Asbestos Health Hazards and Removal
The very word asbestos has taken on negative connotations because of the substance’s link to serious health problems. However, asbestos is not a health hazard until the material that contains it is disturbed. For this reason, asbestos becomes a concern when demolition and renovation are under way.
Asbestos containing materials have been used in the construction industry and the automotive industry.
Asbestos materials are a type of natural fiber that contains silicate particles. Up until recently asbestos has been used in a number of different types of building and industrial materials. These fibers have been used because of their usefulness and effectiveness especially as insulators. They are also present in certain types of floor coverings, roofing materials and siding materials. The microscopic fibers become a health hazard when they are disturbed causing them to become airborne and inhaled into the respiratory tract.
The danger is that inhalation of asbestos can happen without knowledge and the health hazards can accumulate latently over the period of decades. Often serious medical conditions do not appear until all the damage has been done.
Asbestos containing materials are only considered dangerous when they contain what is referred to as “friable” asbestos and are disturbed. Friable asbestos are those fibers that can be disturbed. There are many substances that contain asbestos, but are not considered a danger because of the stability of the material. For example some types of house siding contain asbestos. Such materials should be identified and left in their non-friable state.
Not only are ACMs a concern for residential and commercial properties, but many types of asbestos containing materials have also been found in schools.
Asbestos site cleanup is governed by both state and federal regulations. Stringent criteria apply to the type of ACM being removed. Mechanism of demolition can become important too, especially when considering isolating the fibers and removing them from a site in their own contained waste system.
First Choice Inspectors, LLC carefully inspects all your home’s components. We provide full-service home and commercial inspections and deliver a comprehensive, concise final inspection report. Our home inspectors serve Chicago and the surrounding area. Click here to request a quote or book your inspection.
*We do not do asbestos testing or removal.