The Do’s and Don’ts of Asbestos

There is a lot of conflicting information out there about asbestos. This rock-based insulation material was widely used in construction in Toronto and throughout Southern Ontario, until serious health hazards were associated with its use. Once asbestos was outed as a harmful toxin, the search was on for qualified hazardous waste removal in Toronto.

If you’re wondering if asbestos is present in your house, the only way to know for sure is to engage the services of an asbestos testing company. However, before you start frantically searching for more information about the dangers of asbestos, learn the do’s and don’ts of living with asbestos in the home.

DO This:

Asbestos is a scary substance with even scarier health consequences. If you know there is asbestos in your home, or even if you just suspect it’s a possibility, do the following:

  • DO leave it alone! Like many animals in the wild, asbestos is only dangerous if it is disturbed.
  • DO keep activity in the suspicious area to a minimum. Keep children and pets away from the area to avoid accidentally disrupting the asbestos fibers. This will help keep the area of contamination confined to one place.
  • DO engage the services of professionals who have the specific training required to handle asbestos safely. Sampling and even minor repairs in the area should only be handled by qualified asbestos remediation professionals.

DON’T Do This:

Now that you know what you should do when you suspect the presence of asbestos in your house, let’s look at some things you definitely should NOT do:

  • DON’T try to remove it yourself, under any circumstances. If you don’t have full HAZMAT gear and adequate ventilation equipment, you are putting yourself and your family in danger by stirring up asbestos fibers.
  • DON’T do any home repairs in the area where asbestos is present or suspected without first arranging for proper testing. This is including but not limited to drilling, sanding, scraping or sawing. In fact, cleaning with abrasive cleaners is also not a great idea. If a repair in the area is necessary, you must consult with an environmental remediation specialist to ensure the safety of everyone in the home.
  • DON’T risk tracking asbestos throughout your house by walking around in the area where asbestos is present. If walking through the area cannot be avoided, especially if you are investigating the presence of asbestos, ensure that it’s first cleaned with a wet mop. This will help minimize the transfer of asbestos fibers.

When it comes to asbestos management, education is the key. Learn more about the common sources of asbestos in the home. Review any renovation plans you have to determine if asbestos is likely to be disturbed, and govern your decisions accordingly. Reputable asbestos removal companies are highly skilled, and asbestos disposal is highly regulated by the province. If it is time to remove asbestos from your Toronto home, help can be on the way in no time.

Did you know?

Between 1920 and 1980, over 240,000 homes across Canada were insulated with materials that contained asbestos.
Find out if your home was one of them
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