If you plan to convert your basement into a man cave for watching TV and playing cards on the weekends, the first step is to think about dealing with asbestos before you start swinging the hammer. Asbestos was used in all kinds of building materials decades ago, so if you have an older home, it probably has asbestos somewhere. The problem is that you can't find it by looking for it. You'll need to get an asbestos inspection from a qualified contractor. Here are some things to know about getting the inspection.
Why An Asbestos Inspection Is Necessary
It's impossible to tell where asbestos is in your basement. It might be in old insulation in the walls or around pipes. If the basement is partially finished, it could be in the old flooring. Asbestos was used in everything from siding to insulation because it is a fire resistant material. You don't want to demolish a wall or floor without knowing if it contains asbestos. If asbestos is left undisturbed, it poses no harm. It's only when the material is cut, broken, or scraped that tiny asbestos particles float into the air where you inhale them. Inhaling asbestos can lead to mesothelioma, which is a type of cancer.
It is not worth the health risk to …show more content…
For instance, a small portion of insulation may be cut out and sent to a lab. Also, air samples might be taken. These pick up on circulating asbestos that might be coming from an unknown source. The inspector follows strict procedures for obtaining the samples so no fibers waft into the air. The samples are sent to a lab to be analyzed, so the results aren't immediate. If the material is found in air samples, further testing may be needed to pinpoint the source. Also, you may need repeat testing once your renovations are