Seattle is home to many homes and business establishments. Several residential and commercial properties in this seaport city use asbestos as one of their building materials. But, this component might become a health hazard when left unchecked. It would help you to call the best asbestos removal and inspection services in this city to help reduce the health risks caused by this material.
What is Asbestos?
First, it’s essential to gain additional knowledge about this material.
Asbestos is a soft and flexible naturally-occurring mineral with high corrosion, electricity, and heat resistance. These properties allow the mineral to be useful in different situations. For instance, architects and engineers might include asbestos as part of a building plan to help make an establishment durable to withstand harsh elements.
But, these characteristics may also make asbestos exposure hazardous to health. Asbestos may degrade over time, and its fibers might cause health issues like:
- Organ scarring
- Genetic damage
Asbestos may also inflict an aggressive yet rare form of cancer called mesothelioma. Its symptoms might include dry cough, pain in the chest, fevers, and muscle weakness.
You might find this material in different building materials like:
- Roofing components
- Siding shingles
- Textured paint
- Sink undercoating
- Fuse box insulations
It’s crucial to call professional services before the material can cause irreparable damage to the well-being of individuals.
Things to Consider when Hiring Asbestos Removal and Inspection Services in Seattle
Many residential and commercial establishments in Seattle use asbestos to help enhance fortification. But, structures erected in recent years might not produce a higher risk of asbestos infection in comparison with constructions made decades ago.
The mineral might not have broken down as much in modern establishments. In comparison, old homes and stores might already have damaged asbestos as parts of their foundations. These decades-old structures may pose higher threats to giving people asbestos-related illnesses.
So, it should be part of your plan to have your residence or business checked for damaged asbestos. However, it doesn’t mean you should contact any company that deals with the mineral to check your establishment. Instead, always opt to test for asbestos using the best services Seattle has to offer.
Here are five essential factors to consider when searching for the right asbestos removal and inspection company:
1. Understands the Dangers of Dealing with Asbestos
Many people may know that asbestos is a useful mineral in fortifying structures. But, it might take an expert to know the different characteristics of this material.
Pure asbestos helps promote effective insulation. So, manufacturers of building supplies might use this material as a component in cement, plastic, and other parts. But, microscopic fibers from this mineral might cause several health concerns.
Continuous exposure to these tiny fibers might cause mesothelioma. Also, if an establishment has damaged asbestos, people in the area might be at risk of exposure as well.
For example, you might be using a standard route to travel from home to school or work. You pass an old establishment along the way, and that store might be using asbestos to help with insulation. However, you might not know that the mineral is blowing microscopic fibers to your path.
The damage to your health might not be as alarming as intended if you’re not using the walkway frequently. But, secondhand exposure to objects with damaged asbestos might still lead to specific health ailments.
The asbestos removal and inspection services you contact should know these dangers to a fault. Thus, the professionals shouldn’t waste time checking structures for signs of damages on this mineral. However, it doesn’t mean you should rely on the company to always be available when you need its services.
You might not be the only home or business owner in Seattle that needs their establishments checked for unsafe levels of asbestos exposure. Contact a reliable company today, and you can squeeze an appropriate schedule that would benefit both you and the asbestos removal firm.
2. The Right Tools
It’s hazardous to deal with asbestos with your bare hands. Also, there’s a risk of contamination if you’re not wearing protective gear when handling this mineral.
Buying appropriate pieces of equipment to remove damaged asbestos might not be part of your spending allowance. Thankfully, an established and trustworthy removal and inspection service will have all the necessary tools in handling this mineral.
Check if the company has gear like:
Asbestos and Dust Vacuum
Conventional vacuum cleaners might not do an adequate job in cleaning asbestos fibers. Companies that deal with the inspection and removal of this mineral from homes and other business establishments use specialized vacuums for the job.
These devices come with a High-Efficiency Particulate Absorption (HEPA) filter to help trap fibers in the immediate environment. Also, the vacuum cleaners have high filtration efficiency designed to capture even airborne microscopic particles.
Negative Pressure Units (NPU)
You might find these large machines attached to asbestos removal enclosures. NPUs help create air pressure inside a specific area. This environment will help trap airborne particles, so things like asbestos fibers won’t spread to surrounding areas.
Like NPUs, you may find decontamination units connected to asbestos removal enclosures. This chamber helps isolate and remove dust and other microscopic elements that may latch onto the bodies and suits of asbestos removal professionals.
Decontamination units may also come with a shower runoff accompanied by a filtration and water management system. Think of it as a portable shower to isolate particles to minimize the risks of spreading airborne health hazards.
It can be significantly challenging to contain elements you can’t see with the naked eye. But, asbestos removal firms use unique waste bags to help capture hazardous fibers in the air.
These bags might have thick 200-micron polymer materials to help prevent particles from escaping. Also, these distinct containers tend to have warning logos to help people differentiate them from the standard garbage bag.
Other tools professional asbestos removal services use may include safety footwear, single-use gloves, and half-face filter respirators. Spare yourself the trouble of buying and handling these pieces of equipment by contacting the best services for inspecting and removing asbestos in Seattle, WA.
3. Existence of Certification, Permits, and Other Essential Documents
It should benefit you if you don’t pay for dishonest companies offering illicit services, especially if these firms don’t have the right certifications. Thus, you should only work with accredited asbestos inspection and removal services before you make a selection.
An accredited asbestos removal company in Seattle is an excellent indication that the business abides by the rules and regulations set by the law.
First, consider checking if the company is familiar with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards in handling dangerous minerals like asbestos. These ethics involve being an accredited professional that completed all the necessary training to avoid increasing the risks of people contracting health issues.
Also, asbestos companies may not have one person to handle all tasks in the inspection and removal of this mineral. These businesses may have the following employees:
Oversees jobs and ensures the implementation of safe removal practices.
Develops plans in tackling asbestos removal jobs.
Helps the Project Manager in developing plans. Also, this professional helps make recommendations in asbestos abatement tasks.
Conducts assessments in areas to help determine the presence and current conditions of asbestos.
Conducts asbestos removal jobs under the direction and supervision of a certified supervisor.
Companies dealing with this mineral should also know about the relevant training courses for their staff members. You might also consider asking the asbestos inspection and removal firm about the process its staff underwent to acquire their certifications.
Take note that the application requirements to become a certified asbestos removal worker may include:
- Employment information
- Education history
- Application fee
- Copies of certificates from training
- Prior enforcement actions (if any)
- Results of the latest physical examination performed by a certified physician within the last 12 months
Furthermore, make sure that the company renews its certifications and documents on time. Check the certificates if they aren’t out-of-date. The law might implement legal actions against companies and their employees that fail to renew their certifications.
Also, check the company if you can find it in the Washington Department of Labor and Industries. If the name of the firm isn’t on that list, then it might be a wise decision to search for another asbestos removal business.
Long-term exposure to asbestos can come with health risks. Thus, established companies dealing with this mineral should take proper care of their employees by providing them with insurance plans.
Any business that involves the demolition or removal of asbestos should have adequate coverage in place. The company should have standard liability plans to help secure the financial well-being of its workers and customers.
A standard asbestos coverage may include:
- The sampling, transport, and disposal of asbestos
- Demolition activities
- Handling asbestos
- The health of property owners and tenants
Also, the best asbestos inspection and removal firms should have the highest possible coverage in place for its staff members. Illnesses related to the handling of this mineral might take about 10 to 30 years to manifest.
Thus, claims made from insurance policies covering asbestos inspection and removal needs to be within the period stated in the plan. It might not be possible for an individual to apply for a claim if the coverage expires before symptoms of asbestos-related illnesses begin to manifest.
5. Reasonable Prices
Remember, asbestos might only be dangerous when it expels its fibers to the environment. Intact building components might not need removal. But, elements like deteriorating popcorn ceilings might be an example of promoting higher risks of asbestos-related infections.
Thus, many cases may not need the removal of the material from homes and business establishments. Hence, it’s possible to keep professional abatement services of this material low.
Talk to a trustworthy asbestos inspection company for an assessment of your property. The firm should send an inspector to check where the removal procedures will happen. It’s also possible for professionals to repair asbestos components rather than replacing the materials.
But, asbestos removal can be expensive. A home inspection may cost $400 to $600. Acquiring a sample analysis of the offending material may have an approximate price of $25 to $75. Finally, the complete removal of this mineral may depend on the scale of the operation. But, prepare to spend an average of $20,000 to $30,000 for a medium-sized structure.
So, it’s essential to opt for asbestos abatement companies offering competitive pricing structures. After all, many individuals will start to think about the fees once they know that their properties need these expert services.
Is it Legal to Remove Asbestos Using Do-it-Yourself (DIY) Methods in Seattle?
It’s possible to remove this mineral with DIY practices for single-family homes in Seattle, WA , especially if your newly-bought home has asbestos in it. Any establishment larger than single-family dwellings might need the assistance of professional asbestos removers.
But, it might be best if you let the professionals handle the removal of this material from the start. Otherwise, you need to deal with the necessary steps before you can remove asbestos in your home correctly and legally.
These steps may involve:
- Filing an asbestos notification
- Gaining knowledge for the safe and proper reduction of the mineral
- Disposing of the material properly to avoid further contamination
Also, the exact procedures to remove asbestos from building components may depend on the item for abatement. For example, removing this mineral from oil furnaces might have a different process than abating it from chimney flue packing.
Let these tips help you find the best services for asbestos removal and inspection in Seattle. You mustn’t waste too much time thinking about the potential complications of damaged asbestos in your residential or commercial property. Also, don’t disregard the idea of contacting the right professionals despite the slow manifestation of asbestos-related illnesses. Contact the right firm today, and you may save yourself (and others) the trouble of having to deal with ailments like mesothelioma.