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Asbestos Floor Tiles

One of the main areas asbestos can be located, especially in older homes, is floor tiles. Vinyl, asphalt and rubber are the most common types of floor tiles in which asbestos is located. It can usually be found in the actual floor tile along with the backing on vinyl sheet flooring and adhesives.

Because of the fire-proofing capabilities of asbestos, flooring around wood burning stoves in older homes is highly likely to be protected with some type of asbestos paper, millboard or cement sheets.

Do Your Floor Tiles Contain Asbestos?

How can you tell if you have asbestos floor tiles? Here’s a few things to keep in mind when examining your flooring:

• How old is your home? Houses built between 1930 and 1950 have the highest chance of containing asbestos materials in the flooring.
• How old is your flooring? Floor tiles manufactured before the 1970’s are said to have a higher likelihood of containing asbestos.
• What is the condition of your flooring? Asbestos is usually released into the air when tiles are damaged or worn. If your tiles are in good condition, they should be safe.

How to Deal with Asbestos Floor Tiles

If you suspect your floor tiles contain asbestos and especially if they’re damaged, worn or broken, don’t touch or handle them yourself. Do not sand or scrape the tiles for any reason, as this may release asbestos fibers into the air. Your safest option is to contact a certified asbestos professional who can not only verify whether the flooring actually contains asbestos, but also properly dispose of the tiles.

Asbestos is most dangerous when it’s airborne. Moving, touching or disturbing asbestos-contaminated materials can stir up the particles and make them easy to inhale. Covering the tiles and not disturbing them is the safest way to temporarily manage asbestos floor tiles before a professional arrives.

Unfortunately, asbestos in the home can be found in other areas as well, like insulation, wall or ceiling plaster or even in light bulbs. Being aware of any asbestos in your home can help you avoid suffering detrimental consequences, like mesothelioma, down the road.

Back to The Danger of Asbestos