It is not the mere presence of asbestos in asbestos floor tiles that makes the buildings that contain them dangerous. In its basic nature, asbestos flooring is not a dangerous thing – But rather it is when the flooring becomes damaged in some way that asbestos floor tiles and asbestos linoleum become so much more dangerous. If the asbestos fibers are given a chance to be released into the air and inhaled, they will cause damage and scarring to the lungs that cannot be reversed and that is capable of causing mesothelioma, lung cancer and other harmful diseases.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that is fibrous in nature. There are numerous types of asbestos, some more common than others, which include Chrysotile and Amosite. Chrysotile is white, while Amosite is off white or brown. Asbestos fibers can be incredibly small, as small as seven hundred times smaller than the thickness of a human hair. Asbestos is also very resistant to fire and many chemicals, while also being an excellent insulator. Due to these properties, asbestos was added to many different products over time. While we now know that the fibers of asbestos are to blame for many bodily irritations and various forms of cancer, it wasn’t so well known in the past, and due to this, even today we still find asbestos products in buildings when they are being torn down or renovated.
Many buildings still contain asbestos floor tiles or other forms of asbestos flooring. Regular washing, stripping, waxing and buffing techniques used on these asbestos floors is not going to release asbestos in any dangerous level. There are a number of specific rules and processes that need to be abided by in order to prevent the harmful release of asbestos. When the asbestos flooring is treated properly and kept in good condition, there is no reason why it cannot continue to function without causing harm to the people that inhabit the building. For example, asbestos floor tiles should never be sanded. When stripping asbestos flooring, low abrasion pads should be used with a speed of lower than 300 rpm, and the only method that should be used is the wet method.
When burnishing or dry buffing your asbestos floor tiles, you should only do it when there is enough of a finish on the flooring that the pad is not going to be capable of making contact with the material containing the asbestos. Additionally, broken and damaged asbestos floor tiles should be removed by an asbestos abatement company rather than the home owner or a regular contractor. Exercising these cautions is vitally important to making sure that the asbestos floor is safe rather than harmful toward the people that live or operate within the building. When precautions are taken to keep a building safe, those within it can be kept safe as well.
For removal of asbestos floor tiles, we are your best ally as a qualified, licensed, asbestos abatement contractor.
- Proper containment and removal
- Thorough site decontamination
- Lawful disposal
- If asbestos needs to be tested, we will refer you to a list of certified labs