While it initially had merits as a tough, flame-resistant substance, asbestos was discovered to be thought of as hazardous to health in the mid-20th century.
Historically, asbestos importation production, sale, use, and manufacturing imports are prohibited, with a few exceptions. The prohibition of asbestos within Canada was implemented in the late 1970s. The use and sale of asbestos in Canada were previously controlled by The Federal Government.
This led to a broader campaign to restrict the use and production of asbestos. It culminated in Canada’s ban on asbestos-containing products in the year 2018.
Building owners, homeowners, and building maintenance workers who are considering a remodel or demolition of their property constructed before 1990 must conduct asbestos tests performed on their property to ensure it isn’t contaminated with this hazardous material.
Suppose you’re unsure whether your home or business is asbestos-free. In that case, This guide will tell you the signs to look out for and how you can check for asbestos to ensure that your property or business is not contaminated with the dangerous asbestos substance.
Tests for building materials suspected of being asbestos-containing could be low-risk. Hand tools that are clean, such as hook knives and hammers, screwdrivers, or Exacto blades, are just a few of the tools needed for collecting samples. Spray bottles with altered water moisten the samples before taking samples. Materials suspected of containing asbestos are taken and then put into containers or Ziploc bags, sealed and labeled with the date and the place of collection. The chain of custody containing the information collected is completed and placed on the samples. All sample materials and the chain of custody are sent to a laboratory accredited to be analyzed.
What is Asbestos?
“Asbestos” is a term used to describe “asbestos” refers to a class of naturally occurring silicates made of fine fibrous crystals. Asbestos fibers are excellent electrical insulators and are highly resistant to temperatures, so they have become a viral component in construction materials. Amid its use, asbestos was discovered in various products across many different applications.
Just a few years after the asbestos industry’s massive growth began in the 19th century, it was discovered that people were beginning to raise concerns regarding its health dangers. The first recorded death linked to exposure to asbestos goes in the early 1900s. This rapidly led to increased research studies and anecdotal evidence to confirm the danger to health and safety that asbestos poses to health and safety.
In 1987 The World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer declared asbestos a human carcinogen. Asbestos exposure has been connected to the development of lung cancer and ovarian cancer and larynx cancer. It has been proven to cause chronic irritation and scarring in the lung, which cannot be treated. This is called asbestosis and other health issues.
Presently, asbestos-related death is the main reason for death in the workplace in Canada. It is estimated that around 22,000 people die in Canada from illnesses resulting from asbestos exposure per year.
At this moment, the consensus is unambiguous. Every level or amount of asbestos exposure poses a health risk; It isn’t the case of intensity or quantity.
Identifying Asbestos in Building Materials
After adopting asbestos regulations in many jurisdictions across the globe, the use of asbestos as a construction material waned. However, it can be present in many older houses across Canada. The following are the most prevalent source of asbestos.
- Drywall Joint Compositor (Walls and Ceilings) asbestos fibers are added to the mud drywall. When the mud was applied to joints, asbestos fibers in the mud were also distributed through the mud.
- Plaster (Walls and Ceilings) Plaster ceilings and walls used in older homes could contain asbestos.
- Vermiculite Insulation was commonly used as loose insulation to attics in the walls of cinder blocks. Vermiculite is not the only type of insulation available in Canada with asbestos fibers. However, it is a plausible assumption if you believe your house may contain asbestos-contaminated vermiculite.
- Vinyl Floor Tiles: Old flooring tiles made of vinyl and the adhesive mastic used to secure them to floors could contain asbestos.
- Vinyl Sheet Flooring Sheet flooring and backing paper could contain asbestos.
- Ceiling Tiles Asbestos was commonly used to create sound-dampening ceiling tiles at a certain age.
- Pipe Wraps – Duct and pipe wraps typically contain asbestos because asbestos is excellent insulation.
- Boiler and Duct Insulation Boiler vessels, pipes, and duct insulation are all known to contain asbestos. Asbestos is an excellent thermally resistant material and is often used for insulation.
- Popcorn ceilings and Texture Also known as Stippled Ceilings, this textured finishing component was once well-liked in commercial and residential construction. These ceilings could be made in various ways, so not all of them are dangerous, but many were made using lead-based products and asbestos-contaminated vermiculite insulation.
- Transit Pipes, as well as Panels Transite Pipes and Panels Transite, is a product made of cement which was used onboard and pipe.
- Stucco and Cement Parging Asbestos was used for the stucco exterior and interior and in the bottom of the cement parging zone.
Since asbestos usage was only eliminated in the 80s, it’s suggested that any construction before the 1990s may be contaminated with asbestos and, therefore, should be tested for asbestos. The probability of asbestos’s presence is increased with the amount of time the product has been in use.
Asbestos Testing DIY
Many people choose to carry the asbestos-related inspections by themselves. However, they do it with some risks. Suppose they don’t have the relevant expertise. In that case, they may damage asbestos-containing materials or release asbestos fibers into the air, which could lead to being exposed to asbestos fibers.
Additionally, a DIY asbestos test involves sending a substance sample into an accredited laboratory to verify lab charges and shipping charges. A more secure and reliable method to determine the presence of asbestos is to employ professionals for asbestos testing.
If asbestos is present in particular building material, it is at no risk until it is removed, at which point it may become airborne and very hazardous. A thorough asbestos test in areas to be renovated or demolished must be completed before any renovation or demolition construction on structures built before 1990.
Asbestos Testing Services
A company specializing in asbestos removal is the best choice when you suspect the existence of asbestos. A proper asbestos test and removal methods require extensive training and the appropriate equipment to protect yourself. This is why this is the type of job best done by professionals from asbestos firms such as ‘A&B Asbestos Removal.’
Consult Asbestos Removal Specialists
While it is possible to conduct your asbestos tests at home, the dangers of asbestos are not to be taken lightly. To ensure your tests are correct and avoid the risks of removing asbestos, seek out asbestos removal and testing experts. Their experience will help you feel secure!