Having asbestos floor tiles in your home should not be a danger to your health until you have to remove them. If asbestos becomes airborne, it can cause asbestosis, mesothelioma, or lung cancer.
Asbestos used to be a common substance mixed into building materials to make them stronger and heat resistant. If your vinyl floor tiles were put down before 1980, they most likely contain asbestos.
Removing Asbestos Floor Tiles Properly
Because of the serious health hazard caused by airborne asbestos, it is not recommended for homeowners to remove floor tiles themselves. Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) only allows homeowners to remove non-friable asbestos floor tiles. If floor tiles are friable, hand pressure can crumble or pulverize them. In this case, a licensed asbestos contractor must handle the removal.
MDE recommends using wet disposal methods and for homeowners to wear proper PPE, including a respirator and protective disposable clothing. Only certain landfills accept asbestos waste, so be sure to check which landfills are available. You must notify the landfill at least 24 hours before disposal so they can prepare a burial site for the discarded asbestos floor tiles.
Materials Required for Safe Asbestos Floor Tile Removal
- Plastic sheets for sealing off the work area from the rest of the house
- A respirator with a HEPA filter
- An air purifier with a HEPA filter to capture anything in the air
- Disposable coveralls and gloves
- Sealable plastic bags for asbestos floor tile disposal
- Pump sprayer with water, heat gun and putty knife, or dry ice, depending on the removal method
- Wet wipes
- Vacuum with HEPA filter to capture dry dust
Methods for Safe Asbestos Floor Tile Removal
MDE offers three safe options for safe asbestos floor tile removal:
- Freezing: Use dry ice to freeze the flooring adhesive. Once frozen, the floor tiles should release from the subfloor. Wrap the floor tiles in plastic and seal the plastic bag shut before leaving the sealed-off area.
- Heating: Use a heat gun on the edge of the floor tile to heat the adhesive for removal. Use a putty knife to lift the floor tile from the subfloor, being careful not to crack the tile. Continue to heat and pry small sections until each tile is free from the subfloor. Wet the tiles before placing them in a plastic bag and sealing them for disposal.
- Wetting: Use a spray bottle to wet the floor tiles. Use a putty knife to lift the floor tiles and continue to wet the tiles to help them release from the subfloor. Wrap in plastic and seal before leaving the area.
Calling in the Professionals for Asbestos Floor Tile Removal
The professionals at Allied Restoration in Gambrills, Maryland, are certified asbestos removal specialists. Our licensed technicians are fully trained and use the latest equipment, materials, and techniques to keep your family safe from asbestos. We will also dispose of your asbestos floor tiles properly according to MDE regulations.
Contact us today at 410-BUILDER (410-284-5337) for a free estimate on your asbestos floor tile removal. No job is too big or too small, and we handle residential and commercial asbestos removal.