If your home is several decades old, there's a good chance it has asbestos in it somewhere. That doesn't necessarily mean your house is unsafe, but there could be the potential for asbestos exposure that could lead to lung disease. You can hire a contractor to do an asbestos inspection with testing to find out if there is asbestos present and if it poses a threat. Here are three reasons you may want an asbestos inspection.
1. Do Light Remodeling
Asbestos was used in many building materials before it was banned. For instance, asbestos floor tiles were common in older homes. Before you tear up old flooring, you may want an asbestos inspection. If asbestos is present, you may decide to leave the flooring intact and cover it with new flooring so the asbestos fibers aren't released.
An inspection reveals the condition of the materials that contain asbestos. If the inspector finds the old flooring tiles are frayed and could release fibers, they might recommend sealing the flooring or removing it completely. An inspection helps you know how to deal with building materials that have asbestos so you don't accidentally expose your home and family to asbestos by breaking apart old tiles or other materials in your home.
2. Fix Up or Demolish an Old House
If you already own an older home, it may have been upgraded over the years so asbestos isn't a problem. If you're buying an old house to fix up or if you've inherited an old house that hasn't had work done in decades, then you want to know what's in the home.
Asbestos was used in insulation, especially old insulation around ducts and pipes. Before you rip out insulation, tear off siding, knock down drywall with old paint, you need to know if asbestos is present. If so, that could affect whether you want to buy the house.
If you're buying an old house for the land and you intend to tear down the house, you may still need an asbestos inspection. Demolishing a house releases asbestos fibers in the air that could affect the workers and neighbors. An inspection may be required, and if you don't have one done, you or the contractor could face fines.
3. Enjoy Peace of Mind
If you know your home was built during the time asbestos was used heavily, it may be a constant worry in the back of your mind that your family is being exposed. In that case, it's worth having an inspection done so you can identify the materials in your house that contain asbestos. Even if they pose no danger now, you can monitor the materials over time to watch for cracks, fraying, and other damage that would allow fibers to escape.