Asbestos Testing: All you need to know about asbestos testing

Posted on: 10 September 2018

Asbestos can come in many forms for insulation. Their colours, such as blue asbestos, green asbestos, and brown asbestos on often tell them apart. Asbestos was the most preferred building and thermal insulating material especially in the 1980's due to its strength and inability to burn. However, it emerged that the abrasion, breaking and crumbling of the asbestos released fine asbestos fibres into the air which, when inhaled causes several life-threatening conditions such as lung cancer.

Why is testing for asbestos necessary?

Asbestos is a very harmless substance if left alone. However, when you disturb it, its fibres, which are very fine, are released into the air, and you may inhale them. Inhaling the asbestos fibres is a severe health risk because of the life-threatening conditions that they cause. Unfortunately, there is no way of determining whether you have been exposed to asbestos except when a doctor tests for the presence of asbestos in your system. However, you can only be prompted to visit a health institution for asbestos posioning if you exhibit some of the common symptoms such as dry coughs and tightness of the throat. These symptoms do not show until years and years of exposure. Therefore, it necessary to test for the presence of asbestos in your building to prevent exposing the asbestos fibres into the air after which you may inhale. The necessity, therefore, is to prevent your exposure to asbestos.

When is testing for asbestos done?

Testing for asbestos is usually done when a building is being demolished, repaired, renovated or remodelled. All of these activities have the potential of breaking or crumbling the asbestos, therefore, releasing the asbestos fibres into the air. If your building was constructed before 2003, there are high chances that asbestos-containing materials were used to build your roof shingles, floor tiles, sidings, wall boards and so on. Therefore, when you intend to either demolish, renovate, repair or remodel your house that was constructed before 2003, you will need to have it tested for the presence of asbestos before any work can begin. This is to ensure that the asbestos is removed and properly disposed of by the professionals.

Only licenced asbestos testing professionals should be allowed to test for the presence of asbestos in your building. When it is discovered that your structure indeed contains asbestos, only professional asbestos removing companies should be allowed to remove it. This is because they know how to handle the asbestos without releasing the asbestos fibres into the air. 


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