There has been a significant reduction in the use of asbestos since 1980 but asbestos still kills 12,000-15,000 people per year in the United States.
A lot of old buildings and homes continue to hold asbestos, especially in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Asbestos is dangerous but untrained human eyes are usually unable to spot it, especially when it is airborne. For this reason and more, it’s essential to hire a contractor to inspect and remove asbestos when you suspect it. What does the professional asbestos removal process entail?
Keep reading this asbestos, how to remove guide to find out.
How Is Asbestos Removed?
Identifying Asbestos Materials
Asbestos removers can identify asbestos in the home or in a commercial building. Before the removal process can begin, an inspection is necessary.
Asbestos was incorporated into products like automotive parts, building materials, and consumer items. Asbestos was once used because it’s fire-resistant and durable, but it isn’t safe.
In 1984, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found that a lot of public and private buildings contained asbestos. For buildings made before 1980, asbestos may still be present.
These fibers are not visible to the naked eye and can be hard to identify. These are common building materials that you should try to avoid because they may contain asbestos:
- Ceiling tiles
- Cement sheeting
- Electrical breakers
- Roof shingles/felt
- Textured popcorn ceilings
If you suspect asbestos in any of these spaces, hire a professional asbestos abatement company, like Banner Environmental to inspect the area. Our expert contractors can take samples of the materials to test them.
An Asbestos Removal Plan
Before asbestos removal, we follow a comprehensive and safe abatement plan that includes details on how the area will be treated, prepared, and the cleanup process. Our work plan also complies with any applicable mandatory local, state, and federal laws, along with best practice procedures we’ve put in place based on our numerous years of asbestos removal and abatement.
Once the plan is in place, we mark off hazardous areas. During the removal of asbestos, building occupants cannot be there.
After marking hazardous areas, these occupants should leave the area until the removal process ends. Clearance testing is also performed at this time.
Setting Up a Regulated Work Area
To remove asbestos, we set up a regulated work area. We will seal air ducts, shut off the HVAC system, and seal off areas that don’t need treatment. Thick plastic sheets and air pressure will help protect these areas.
The work area is then inspected and must be approved before any asbestos removal can begin.
As a professional asbestos removal company, we utilize wet methods and hand tools to remove common asbestos-containing building materials (ACBMs). It is important to hire professionals like Banner Environmental to complete this hazardous job because it is technical and it is dangerous. We wear protective clothing and respirators to avoid breathing in any dangerous particles.
All ACBMs are put into sealed waste disposal bags and removed through a decontamination space. The sealed bags have a protective lining built into the design to avoid any seepage or escape.
Our professional abatement team then takes the materials to a landfill that is qualified to receive the waste. Massachusetts and Rhode Island have specific protocols on asbestos waste and we strictly follow them to ensure everyone’s safety and compliance with the regulations in each area we work.
Additionally, to ensure no asbestos fibers or ACBMs escape, we establish a decontamination space near the work area. Before exiting the area each day, or at the end of a project, our contractors do through the decontamination area to remove any materials that may have attached to work clothing or tools.
We understand the dangers of removing asbestos so vacuuming is a necessary component of our protocol because asbestos particles will spread during the removal process.
High-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) vacuuming uses HEPA filtration for asbestos removal. These vacuums can minimize the displacement of asbestos fibers during the process. It can also help with cleaning some surfaces.
Final Cleaning of Asbestos Work Area
Once the ACMB in the work area has been safely removed, all work surfaces will be cleaned with HEPA vacuums. Then, a final asbestos inspection will take place.
This inspection includes a clearance air sampling that follows any state and federal requirements.
Work area tarps and barriers along with air filtration stay up until clearance testing is complete, and to pass, the work area must meet the clearance criteria set at the beginning of the abatement work plan.
If clients need repairs done after asbestos removal, Banner Environmental is also able to finish any repairs and re-constructions before the final cleaning and clearance testing.
After meeting the clearance criteria, we remove the work area containment barriers and also re-clean the work area by once again using the HEPA vacuums.
Once post-cleanup finishes, you’ll receive a report from our abatement team containing:
- Sit logs
- Waste shipment records
- Copies of licensing
You will also receive a report with copies of laboratory analysis and inspection results. It is important that clients keep these records to stay compliant with environmental regulations.
Asbestos Removal Cost
Commonly, homeowners and commercial property managers wonder and are concerned about the asbestos removal cost. There is no one size fits all answer to the pricing of asbestos removal, however.
Each project is unique and the cost depends on factors like building size and how much asbestos is present. For example, asbestos siding removal is going to have a different price than asbestos shingles removal.
Other asbestos removal projects that will have different costs are:
- Asbestos popcorn ceiling removal
- Asbestos ceiling tile removal
- Asbestos insulation removal
- Asbestos pipe removal
Banner Environmental offers upfront free assessments and quotes so you can put a dollar amount on your asbestos removal project. We also work directly with insurance companies so we can help you determine if your policy will cover your unique asbestos abatement situation.
Do You Need Asbestos Removed?
Safely removing asbestos is a job for a professional team like Banner Environmental. If you suspect asbestos in your home or office building, you should never attempt to remove it yourself.
Only contractors have the qualifications for asbestos removal because it is a dangerous and complicated job. Once complete, your building will be safe to enter once again! When you hire a contractor, like Banner, expect to go through the above process listed in this guide.
To schedule your asbestos removal, contact us at Banner Environmental Services. We have 24 HR Emergency Service: 866-934-2374. With more than 25 years of commercial and residential experience, we are your go-to asbestos removal company in the Greater Boston area and throughout Rhode Island.