Asbestos was used in the past as a mineral that reduced heat transfer. One of the remaining sources of asbestos is found in white duct wrap. No one can know if the material contains asbestos without proper testing.
Asbestos testing provides unique challenges because of the litigation, laws, rules and regulations that surround this carcinogen. American Air Testing is licensed by CalOSHA and EPA to perform asbestos testing.
Why American Air Testing Does Preliminary Testing
If the material being removed doesn’t contain asbestos, then that material does not have to go to a toxic waste site. This will reduce the total cost of your job. If you don’t have asbestos, why are you paying expensive removal and toxic dump fee costs?
If asbestos is found, proper controls can be used to prevent contamination of other areas, again saving you cleanup money.
Asbestos Cleanup (Abatement) is not a Contractor, Handyman or Homeowner Job
There are too many problems that can come up when dealing with asbestos (like contaminating the HVAC ducting system, among a lot of other issues) for untrained personnel to attempt an asbestos abatement.
Asbestos is a known carcinogen. Please use licensed, trained, insured professionals to remove asbestos. Before you go to this expense, doesn’t it make sense to have that material tested? If it doesn’t contain asbestos, then a handyman or general contractor can perform the work needed at a reduced cost. If asbestos is found and removed, doesn’t it make sense to have a third party clearance document saying the asbestos is gone?
American Air Testing personnel hold CAC and SST certifications from DOSH and EPA. The CAC certification is one of the highest levels of asbestos certification awarded, after challenging testing, by the State of California. Anyone that holds a CAC must also have eight+ years of experience and certification as an SST before taking the CAC courses and exam. Both the CAC and SST must be renewed biannually. Confirmation of CAC and SST certification can be found at DOSH.
Asbestos can be found in linoleum and linoleum glue; all levels of linoleum need to be tested. Asbestos can also be found in mud, tape, insulation (and yes, fiberglass isn’t a good thing to have floating around inside your nose, either). Here is a link to EPA’s list of some of the more common Asbestos Containing Materials, also referred to as ACM.
What is a GURU zone?
The state rock of California is Serpentine which contains asbestos fibers. There are certain areas designated as GURU zones – Geographical Ultramatrix Rock Unit, which is a geological term. Building in these zones can become quite expensive. You should consult a licensed local geologist, the local building departments and possibly a local real estate attorney if you choose to become involved in one of these zones.
The San Francisco Bay Area have very few areas where serpentine rock is found; one exception is Tiburon.