Asbestos in Linoleum Floor: Is it Dangerous & How to Remove?

Asbestos is an unsafe material found in older linoleum flooring and other construction materials. However, it was banned because of the health risks that were discovered to be associated with it. This ban doesn’t mean it affected all products as some products, including floor tiles, still have asbestos materials in them.

Asbestos linoleum flooring is common but doesn’t pose as much danger as other flooring materials. Although asbestos is a vital material used as a binding agent in vinyl floor coverings, it isn’t needed for linoleum tiles. The asbestos can’t become airborne when the floor is encased in floor tiles is still in excellent condition but can become a problem if the tiles have cracks or are damaged.

You may be concerned about asbestos floor tiles if you still live in an older home. However, in this article, we’ll provide you with information explaining what dangers you should expect with asbestos and the best way to get yourself and your family protected.

Asbestos in Linoleum Floor

Asbestos in Linoleum Flooring

Most people are yet to tell the difference between linoleum and vinyl. But, they’re different types of flooring. Linoleum is a floor covering of dried linseed oil, jute, cork, wood dust and doesn’t necessarily need asbestos. Linoleum is made of mostly natural elements. While the manufacturers synthetically make vinyl with more amounts of asbestos added for fire resistance and stability.

Ideally, the earliest created linoleum flooring doesn’t contain asbestos. However, its popularity of linseed-oil-based linoleum made several manufacturers produce their sheet flooring and add other materials, including asbestos. And since there is not much difference between the two, people also started adopting the new linoleum.

Spots where Asbestos can be found in the Home?

In recent times, there has been a substitute for asbestos. However, you can still find asbestos in many homes, offices, memorial buildings, places of worship, and many more. The earliest use of asbestos can be traced back to the early 20th century. It is used globally.

Asbestos are commonly found in sheet flooring, tile adhesive, and floor tiles. However, asbestos is durable and robust. This made it possible to use asbestos more at home. You can find asbestos in plaster, cement, and even drywall joint compounds. One of its characteristics is insulation; it is used for electrical insulation, pipes, and even walls. Rubber door gaskets are not left behind because it is durable. It is used for wall texturing, pot holders, and iron board covers.

Is Asbestos Dangerous?

Asbestos is basically made with fibers and other mineral classes. However, asbestos is often durable and fire-resistant. They can be joined with other materials to make them stronger. When material consisting of asbestos gets faulty or damaged, the fibers go to the air, thereby causing air pollution. There are several forms of asbestos, and all contain high fiber concentrate.

Air pollution is one of the most dangerous forms of pollution because it involves inhaling whatever substance is found in the air. When released into the air, these fibers go straight to your lungs and are inhaled. Sometimes you can quickly get rid of this harmful substance by coughing it.

Some of these substances still find their way to the lungs and cause serious health issues. Fibers cause several deadly illnesses. Some of them include asbestos-related lung cancer, mesothelioma, pleural thickening, asbestosis, etc.

Asbestosis is a hazardous lung illness caused by too much exposure to asbestos for many years. It can cause the inability to breathe well, leading to death. Pleural thickening is often caused when an individual is exposed to a lot of asbestos at a time. This can be harmful because it can shrink the lungs, causing chest irritation and shortness of breath.

Is Asbestos removal necessary?

Asbestos that is locked and cannot become airborne is said to be a non-friable material. On the other hand, friable material is hazardous. 

Since these are the only two states of asbestos, you can easily know if it will be necessary to remove it without causing problems.

A non-friable asbestos floor can be resilient. This state of asbestos poses no risk, especially when the material is still in good condition. It will be better to leave the resilient floor just as it is because any process of removing it will eventually turn it into friable asbestos. This becomes very dangerous.

Generally, because of safety and health reasons, it is advisable to remove the friable and non-friable asbestos because a non-friable asbestos can turn into a friable asbestos in the long run.

Tips for asbestos removal

Not every society authorize the public removal of asbestos. So, you can only decide to do the job yourself only if you’re permitted to by the relevant authorities. And you also need to follow the proper guidelines laid down to ensure the safety of the environment while you remove the asbestos from your home.

We’ve also help you with some tips that are useful to guide you. This will ensure that you carry out the job safely and without putting the members of your household at risk.

  • You’re required to put on a face mask that will permit you to breathe well. This is to ensure your safety while working.  You’ll also need to wear a google to protect your eye. It is also important that your full body is covered not to allow any body contact with harmful substances.
  • It would help if you sealed off other house areas by shutting off your HVAC unit. This is done to prevent the asbestos fibers from adulterate other rooms.
  • You need to sprinkle water as you work. This will help reduce how much amount of fibers you inhale while working. A good tool to use for this is a pump sprayer.
  • You can then remove the asbestos tiles using any recommended tool. You need to be careful at this point so that it doesn’t get to your body.
  • When disposing, you should only use the approved disposal bags. The bags also need to be sealed after stacking.
  • Use enough water and soap to clean up any residue remaining. Also Scrap the floor thoroughly to ensure that nothing else is remaining. You also have to put everything here into the disposal bags.
  • It is advisable if you could dispose the materials you used in doing the job. This is to avoid any risk of any hazardous repercussion later on.

It is also vital that you consult and seek proper advice from professionals in areas that you’re unclear. You can also engage in their services if you’re unable to carry out the job yourself. However, if you wish to carry out the removal process yourself, ensure to follow every safety measure and guideline for a successful removal process.

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Conclusion

Although not all linoleum flooring contains asbestos, it is crucial to treat all flooring types as if they have some contained in them. This will help protect yourself and your family members from breathing in asbestos fiber. Removing asbestos tiles isn’t as difficult as many people may think. But, you need to follow certain safety measures to ensure that you don’t make any mistakes and put yourself at risk of any danger. When in doubt, you can always seek for professional services of experts to help you test for asbestos in your linoleum flooring. They can also help you in the removal process for a fee. This way, your family becomes free from the risks involved with asbestos.

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