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Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

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  • Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

    Asbestos-contaminated vermiculite insulation poses health hazard

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is warning the public and electricians, plumbers and other contractors who perform work in attics about the potential risks of asbestos exposure from contaminated vermiculite insulation. Vermiculite from a Libby, Mont., mine containing asbestos was sold from 1919 to 1990 and used in the majority of vermiculite insulation in the United States. EPA's guidance document (English/Spanish) and vermiculite Web page offer ways to help reduce exposure.
    Last edited by Bob D.; 07-29-2009, 09:29 PM.
    "When we build let us think we build forever. Let it not be for present delight nor for present use alone. Let it be such work that our descendants will thank us for, and let us think, as we lay stone upon stone, that a time is to come when these stones will be held sacred because our hands have touched them, and that men will say, as they look upon the labor and wrought substance of them, "See! This our fathers did for us."
    John Ruskin (1819 - 1900)

  • #2
    Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

    I believe Mansfield also put out a blown insulation that is pretty high in asbestos.

    I think it's pretty safe to assume if the home was built pre 1980 and has blown insulation, it contains a high amount of asbestos.

    I did abatement of several attics with blown. Boy was that fun in the summer. One was so hot we could only work 1/2hr then come down to cool for 20mins each with our own water supply so boss could monitor our hydrating. That makes for a long day.
    INSIGHT PIPE is now Maine Drain Serving most of ME with no charge for travel! 207-431-6232 is nolonger a working # our NEW # is 207-355-1476
    Sewer main snaking (roto rooting). Sink clogs. Sewer backup. Pipe inspection/locating. No Dig trenchless repair. Root clog removal.We are NOT to replace your local Plumber, as we do not do plumbing. WE ARE YOUR DRAIN CLEANING EXPERTS!!! www.sewermaine.com waterville winslow bangor augusta skowhegan fairfield pittsfield oakland

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    • #3
      Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

      Many pre 1980 homes were built with blown Fiberglass in the Southeast. IF the insulation is of the vermiculite consistency it is generally asbestos. If it is the Chopped stranded consistency it is generally fiberglass or rock wool, both of which were popular loose fill insulations.

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      • #4
        Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

        I should point out that it was mostly (if not only) the Libby mine that had the asbestos contaminated vermiculite. Vermiculite was a popular insulaton in the 50's (and perhaps before) and, I believe, can still be purchased. Those houses may be southern-sourced Verculite which is okay. My parents home has Vermiculite in the attic, and it was built in the mid-50's. Also, vermiculite is, or was, used as a mix with soil and used as potting soil.

        I did some research on Vermiculite in early 2000 as I wanted to use if to insulate the walls in a shed. IIRC, Verculite is still mined in the south east (don't recall actually where). Other than the Libby mine and vacinity, Vermiculite can be asbestos free.

        The question of course is, how does one make the determination?

        CWS

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        • #5
          Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

          Originally posted by CWSmith View Post

          The question of course is, how does one make the determination?

          CWS
          Send a sample to a Hygienist to be tested.

          Or roll around in it every day for 6 months and wait 20-30 years to see what happens
          INSIGHT PIPE is now Maine Drain Serving most of ME with no charge for travel! 207-431-6232 is nolonger a working # our NEW # is 207-355-1476
          Sewer main snaking (roto rooting). Sink clogs. Sewer backup. Pipe inspection/locating. No Dig trenchless repair. Root clog removal.We are NOT to replace your local Plumber, as we do not do plumbing. WE ARE YOUR DRAIN CLEANING EXPERTS!!! www.sewermaine.com waterville winslow bangor augusta skowhegan fairfield pittsfield oakland

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          • #6
            Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

            Google "Asbestos test kits". The kits have a sample bag that you put a sample in and send to them. They test it and send you back the results. Usually about 10 for the kit and 20 for the test.

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            • #7
              Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

              Call around to various environmental companies in your town. I used to work for one sampling and removing asbestos. You can obtain a sample yourself by placing it in a small ziplock bag preferably using nitrile gloves as to not contaminate it with any foreign fibers and bring it to/send it to the closest lab for analysis. If it does come back positive don't worry about abating it, but i wouldn't even recommend opening your attic hatch without a proper P100 respirator cartridge in a proper half face (or preferably full face) air purifying respirator. If you need to disturb a lot of it then properly trained workers will be needed.Also, depending on the type of asbestos it is the degree of danger varies. As far as I know asbestos is divided into two groups, serpentine and amphiboles. Chrysotile is the only serpentine asbestos available and is the most common, and the only one found in Canada. There are 5 types of asbestos in the amphibole group amosite (brown asbestos, the second most common type) crocidolite (blue asbestos)and anthophylite tremolite and actinolite which are commonly found amongst all three main groups of asbestos. I believe amosite is the most dangerous while chrysotile is the least dangerous, in my mind it really doesn't matter because they are all dangerous. That's all I can think of right now, maybe if I find my asbestos training literature I can look up some more. I am almost fully certified to remove it myself in Canada.
              Last edited by Marklar89; 08-09-2009, 06:16 PM.

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              • #8
                Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

                If I recall right, this is "the only mine in the entire world" that has Asbestos in it. Weird eh......
                Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

                http://www.contractorspub.com

                A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!

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                • #9
                  Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

                  Originally posted by garager View Post
                  If I recall right, this is "the only mine in the entire world" that has Asbestos in it. Weird eh......
                  There was a mine in Quebec called Thetford mine and that was where most of the asbestos in Canada came from. Wikipedia has more info on it .http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thetford_Mines

                  Don't know too much more about where all of the asbestos came from just how to get rid of it.
                  -Mark

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                  • #10
                    Re: Asbestos-contaminated Vermiculite Insulation poses Health Hazard

                    Don't forget to triple bag any sample you take.
                    cheers
                    Chris
                    http://www.asbestos-jobs.com

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