Before the Canadian government banned the use of asbestos in 2018, various asbestos-containing materials (ACM) were used in buildings. Asbestos fibers in the air can cause severe health issues in such spaces. Some test kits and experts can test for contaminants like asbestos and mold in your space. This article will explain what asbestos is and what air quality tests are available on the market.
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a material resistant to fire, chemicals, heat, and electricity. This high durability is why asbestos was a common fiber used in various building materials. However, the qualities that make it durable also make it a health hazard. When damaged or handled without care, asbestos can break into microscopic fibers. Humans can breathe these fibers in, and it would build up in the lungs. The buildup harms the body. This may result in asbestosis and mesothelioma, a rare form of respiratory cancer. Asbestos air testing is crucial for Canadian building owners because the mineral was first mined there. Some services provide asbestos testing in Montréal that determine whether there are harmful asbestos fibers in your space.
Common Materials Containing Asbestos
Older tiles, plumbing systems, popcorn ceilings, and cement all have a degree of asbestos included during manufacturing. Beyond construction, asbestos was also used in fireproofing a lot of textiles, like firefighters’ suits and blankets. Vinyl, felt, adhesives, plastics, and diaphragms are some industrial products containing asbestos. Ashtrays, hair dryers, fake snow, and many more consumer goods contain some asbestos.
Testing for Asbestos
You must consult specialists to decide which of the many asbestos air testing services is most suitable for your building. After examining your structure, they will recommend a test. The widespread testing methods are listed below.
Background Air Testing
This test determines the concentration of asbestos in your air by counting fibers in an air sample collected and filtered through a pump.
Reassurance Air Testing
A reassurance test is the same as a background test, but this test is conducted after removing any asbestos-containing material from your property.
A visual inspection is typically performed after the asbestos has been removed. However, it’s an eye inspection done by qualified specialists to determine if there is asbestos remaining or not.
This involves four stages of legal asbestos testing after an asbestos removal project. This is conducted by experts. Stage one involves checking the work, the site, and the files to ensure that all safety procedures are adhered to during the inspection. Stage two is a visual inspection to ensure that all asbestos-containing material and dust have been properly removed. The inspector will also verify the structural integrity of areas tested for asbestos. Stage three involves air sampling for asbestos fibers that may be left over. It involves collecting air samples, filtering the sample, and counting the fibers. If stage three is completed and all removal and transit areas have been thoroughly cleaned, the space will be ready for reoccupation.
While asbestos is no longer legally used in production, many products still contain some asbestos fibers. Contact experts for testing immediately if you suspect asbestos fibers in your building.