Understanding Asbestos and Where To Find It

When considering home improvements or purchases, asbestos often comes up in conversation, especially with older homes. The primary concern of asbestos is its health effects. Inhalation of asbestos dust or materials can result in severe and life-threatening conditions. An asbestos contractor, like from Nielsen Environmental, will want to check several areas of your home before deciding on removal needs.


The attic may have asbestos materials in the insulation. Before the 1980s, asbestos was a common insulating material. The danger comes into play, depending on the type of asbestos used. Friable asbestos is more prone to disintegration and becoming airborne. Non-friable asbestos is more tightly woven, interlaced with other materials. While both types should be removed for optimum security, non-friable materials, especially in good condition, can be left alone and monitored.


Did you know that in some older homes there was asbestos used in the window putty? Unfortunately, window putty can become powdery over time, which is potentially dangerous for homeowners and renovators. If you are considering a home renovation of an older house, it is wise to consult with an asbestos removal company first.

Ceilings, Walls and Floors

Building materials, beyond insulation, also used asbestos compounds for manufacturing and production. Drywall, ceiling tiles and flooring all had asbestos materials. Tile and laminate flooring should be inspected if there is any question as to their installation date. Sometimes with flooring and other materials, an asbestos removal company may recommend sealing the substance rather than removing it.

Water Heaters, HVAC and Pipe Insulation

Older water heaters, HVAC systems and piping often used asbestos for insulation and even as a covering. The asbestos wrap was thought to be an effective insulator because it could follow the bends of the pipes or ducts through the building. Unfortunately, the asbestos used on these devices is friable, meaning that it can disintegrate over time, becoming airborne and a health risk.

Basement and Crawl Spaces

Basements and crawl spaces are often found with asbestos insulation and building materials, even when the rest of the home or property has been updated. These lower locations are often overlooked and neglected. The piping, ductwork and building materials may all have asbestos.

If you are worried that your home has asbestos, then contact an asbestos removal company for a property assessment. They will inspect your home or building and take samples of suspicious substances, testing each to identify possible asbestos. If found, they will explain the necessary next steps.