How do you know if there is asbestos in the building materials in my property (such as: floor tile/mastic, ceiling tile, roofing, wallboard, stucco, plaster, etc.?
The only way to be sure whether a material contains asbestos is to have it sampled by a certified asbestos consultant and analyzed at a NAVLAB certified approved laboratory. The EPA only (eliminate only)recommends testing suspect materials if they are damaged (disturbed, fraying, crumbling) or if you are planning a renovation that would disturb the suspect material (s). Samples SHOULD only be collected by a properly trained and certified asbestos consultant.
When remodeling or repairing a property, should you be concerned about asbestos in the building materials?
It's not possible for you to tell whether a material in your home contains asbestos simply by looking at it. If you suspect a material within your home might contain asbestos (for example floor tile/mastic, ceiling tile, wallboard, stucco, plaster or old pipe wrap) and the material is damaged (fraying or falling apart) or if you are planning on performing a renovation that would disturb the material, the EPA recommends that you have it sampled by a properly trained and certified asbestos consultant.
What are the health risks if I have asbestos in my home, building, office, or school?
Asbestos that is in good condition and left undisturbed is unlikely to present a health risk. The risks from asbestos occur when it is damaged or disturbed where asbestos fibers become airborne and can be inhaled. Managing asbestos in place and maintaining it in good repair is often the best approach.