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How To Know If You Have Asbestos In Your Home

By Michael Butler
Asbestos exposure can be harmful to your health, but taking initiative can help in a major way.

Knowledge is power and knowing whether your house has asbestos is a matter of public health. Hiring a trained professional can help you detect asbestos in your home and contribute to a healthy, safe living space. And there are trained professionals you can hire to help.

Asbestos is a mineral frequently used for construction projects due to its flame resistance and the strength of its microscopic fibers. But if you are exposed to it, asbestos can cause serious health problems including cancer.

Asbestos can be found in wall and attic insulation, roofing and siding shingles, and more. It can also cause lung damage when inhaled and its fibers can cause scarring in your lungs that cannot be fixed.

Two situations in particular can expose you and your loved ones to asbestos: Home remodeling and renovating damage in your home. In these situations, it is recommended to have a trained professional inspect your home for asbestos. During remodeling, you may break your house down and expose asbestos in the process. Renovations can also cause the same situation.

You can hire an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved professional to inspect your home for asbestos. It is strongly suggested that your asbestos inspector professional is accredited and has completed approved training. An unseasoned professional haphazardly testing your home for asbestos can cause more harm than good.

You ultimately want an asbestos professional working with your home that is as careful as you are. For example, just as you do not want to track asbestos fibers around the home, the professional doing work should not either.

For homeowners, all is not lost if your house tests for asbestos. With encapsulation, you can treat asbestos fibers with a sealing agent that will bind them together. Enclosure is another method and is done by covering exposed asbestos with a wrap that keeps its fibers from being released.

Working with an asbestos professional and being careful when doing structural work in your home can maintain a livable home condition for you and your loved ones.