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Safeguarding Your Toronto Home When Asbestos is Present: Effective Strategies

In Toronto, Ontario and most of North America once celebrated for its versatility, durability and fire protective abilities asbestos is now acknowledged as a hazardous substance, capable of causing severe respiratory ailments such as lung cancer, mesothelioma and other nasty health issues. Given its prevalent use in construction materials in Toronto and the G.T.A until the 1970s, many homes erected before this era are likely to have asbestos-containing materials (ACMs). Therefore, acquainting oneself with the best practices for managing and mitigating asbestos in residential settings homes, condos or apartment buildings is important for ensuring the safety of your family and its occupants.

How to Identify Asbestos-Containing Materials (ACMs): So how do you start off when your suspect asbestos in your home is a question we get asked all the time. To do this start by looking for potential ACMs (Asbestos Containing Materials) within your home. The most common materials where asbestos can be found are attic insulation containing vermiculite, vinyl floor tiles (VCT tiles), ceiling tiles or acoustic ceiling tiles, HVAC ducting, duct registers behind walls under flooring, drywall, drywall joint compound, popcorn ceiling, textured ceiling and roofing materials. Considering the widespread usage of asbestos in Toronto and the G.T.A before the 1980s, it is best to assume the presence of Asbestos in your Toronto or G.T.A home unless you have substances in the home tested to confirm the presence of asbestos.

Asbestos wrapped duct register

Importance of getting a Professional Assessment: If you suspect the presence of asbestos in your home in Toronto or the G.T.A it is best to seek a certified asbestos inspector to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of your property. These experts possess the requisite training to detect ACMs and can give certified recommendations for their management or removal based on their findings. Do not attempt to identify or handle asbestos materials independently, as mishandling may result in the release of hazardous fibers making them airborne. Here at The Pros Network our network partners are fully certified and fully licensed to handle and provide testing of building materials for the presence of asbestos with certified results.

Look in to Developing an Asbestos Management Plan: The Pros Network technicians and environmental hygienists can provide a robust management plan predicated on the inspector’s assessment and asbestos testing reports. This blueprint should delineate strategies for containment, encapsulation, or removal, contingent on the condition and location of the hazardous materials.

Prioritize the Removal of the Identified Hazardous Materials: Priority should be given before any building, renovation or demolition to the removal of damaged or deteriorating ACMs to mitigate the risk of fiber release which becomes airborne and can easily travel throughout your home. Identified asbestos materials pose a heightened health hazard and necessitate prompt attention from licensed asbestos abatement professionals like us.

Safe Handling Practices Always: When handling ACMs, we must strictly adhere to safety protocols to minimize exposure to workers and a home’s occupants. Appropriate PPE (personal protective equipment) including respirators, gloves, and protective clothing must be used in all asbestos jobs. Attention to avoid disturbing asbestos materials whenever feasible, refraining from actions such as sanding, sawing, or drilling if possible. In the event that disturbing ACM’s must be done for asbestos removal containment protocols and air scrubbing must be used.

Always Implement Adequate Containment Measures: For intact ACMs where immediate removal is not needed, it is important to implement proper containment measures to prevent fiber release. This may include lockdown or sealing, encapsulation, or shielding the hazardous materials with a protective barrier to prevent contamination.

Toronto area home asbestos siding

Toronto home asbestos siding removal

Always use Licensed Professionals: If you reside in the Toronto, G.T.A or southern Ontario areas in matters pertaining to asbestos removal or abatement, you should always avoid any inclination towards do-it-yourself removal. Instead, you should always look for the expertise of licensed asbestos abatement professionals possessing the proper training, certifications, experience, and equipment to safely manage ACMs in adherence to Ontario regulations. Here at The Pros Network all of our technicians and network partners are fully licensed certified and insured for this type of work.

By Law you must Dispose of Asbestos Waste Appropriately: In Ontario it is against the law to dispose of asbestos materials in your usual garbage and you must hold a license to handle and dispose at an approved facility or face fines and charges. Ensuring the proper disposal of asbestos waste is necessary to prevent contamination and exposure. You should contact your local professional Toronto area asbestos company, environmental or health department to ascertain the prescribed disposal procedures for asbestos-containing materials, refraining from disposing of such waste in regular household trash receptacles.

You should Inspect for Signs of Deterioration: To avoid asbestos from becoming a hazard in your home you should regularly monitor asbestos-containing materials for any indicators of damage or degradation. Should you find any anomalies such as crumbling or fraying be detected, in materials such as drywall, wrapping etc. it’s best to promptly contact licensed professionals like us to evaluate the situation and undertake necessary remediation measures for your asbestos issues.

It is Important to Educate Yourself and Members of your Household: Making awareness among yourself and other household occupants identifying the hazards associated with asbestos materials present in your home and the possibility of exposure is important. Always underscore the importance of following prescribed safety protocols. Ensure that everyone in the house is able to identify ACMs and is educated with the proper course of action in the event of encountering asbestos in your Toronto area home.

Consider Air Quality Testing from a Licensed Professional: In certain instances, conducting air quality testing from our licensed professionals may prove advantageous for monitoring asbestos fiber levels within your home to see if there is any cause for concern. Such assessments can provide valuable insights into the need of containment measures, or Toronto asbestos removal thereby safeguarding indoor air quality of your home and protecting it’s occupants.

Keep and Maintain Comprehensive Records: Maintain meticulous records documenting asbestos inspections, maintenance activities, and any remediation measures undertaken within your home. Such records serve as invaluable references and may be very valuable should you contemplate selling your residence and the prospective buyer must be notified of its presence. Also in some cases it is the law to disclose asbestos materials present in a Toronto or G.T.A area home.

In summary, managing asbestos materials within your home necessitates proper planning, professional intervention, and strict adherence to safety protocols and provincial regulations. By following these best practices, you can effectively mitigate asbestos-related risks in your home and safeguard the well-being of your household members. Remember, when it comes to asbestos, being on the side of caution and seeking professional assistance are always paramount. If you suspect or have asbestos present in your home and want professional advice The Pros Network are here to help.