Now Environmental Services https://www.nowenvironmental.com Now Environmental Services Fri, 23 Jun 2017 13:11:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Heavy Metal – Lead In Your Home https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-testing-seattle/heavy-metal-lead-in-your-home/ Wed, 31 May 2017 20:08:00 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=938 We previously explored the scourge of the 21st century home buyer, acoustical, (or popcorn) ceiling texture. The substance that can influence a potential homebuyer for no other reason than it severely dates the home. The truth is that many popcorn ceilings contain asbestos and exposure can lead to lung problems and cancer. Homes of the popcorn ceiling era also may be hiding much more than a bat in the attic, the danger lies in the substance lead. Essentially if you have a home built pre-1980 you are at risk for cancer, lead poisoning and all sorts of other ailments simply because of the materials that we were used back then. Now, in light of that fatalistic view of older homes, removing and/or mitigating the danger is fairly easy, but first, you need to know what you are dealing with. At NOW Environmental Services we are your local consulting and compliance contractor for indoor air quality. We test your home for contaminants such as mold, lead, and asbestos. We are proud to serve the King County area and cherish the opportunity to make the lives of others better.

Lead Through History

Lead is classified as a heavy metal in chemistry and has been utilized for thousands of years due to its ease of manipulation. Lead, being fairly soft, is easy to work with and form, which led to thousands of uses over the centuries. Romans made pipes, the Chinese used it as a contraceptive, and the Europeans used it for stained glass windows. Of course, its uses were much more widespread than this, but being as though it is naturally occurring, it is a metal that was readily available throughout history. Around the dawn of the 20th century, doctors began to look much more critically at what was perceived as lead poisoning, particularly in victims who engaged in trades where lead was prominent. Regardless of the dangers, lead continued to be used into the present day. Items like lead pipes, batteries, bullets and gasoline all contained lead in high concentrations.

The Next Chapter, Lead Paint

During the 1970s, lead was being phased out of pretty much everything due to the destructive effects it has on the human body. Gasoline was one of the testaments to lead’s diverse uses, and it prevented more primitive engines from pre-detonation. Leaded gas was phased out and replaced by more effective engineering and better fuel. Lead pipes are still an issue in many parts of the country and have come to light recently due to the Flint, Michigan water crisis. Other than lead pipes, lead paint is a major issue in homes before 1980.                 

Lead paint has been around for thousands of years and was finally linked to health issues about a hundred years ago. Due to the vibrant colors and durability of the paint it was widely used for painting homes, inside and out. The dangers of lead paint are particularly enhanced in children as lead has a sweet taste which encourages young children to ingest the paint chips and put toys painted with lead paint in their mouths.  

Much like asbestos, lead is dangerous when it is introduced into the air. Lead causes massive organ issues and even brain damage. The danger when children are exposed to lead is that it impairs their development and the effects are life long. Lead can accumulate over time and cause compounded damage, particularly if the exposure is unknown.

What Can Be Done?

The issue with lead paint is, rarely older buildings are stripped of existing paint and many times lead paint is hiding underneath newer paint. This can create obvious issues for the homeowner. At NOW Environmental Services we offer comprehensive, lead and asbestos testing and analysis. If you feel like your home is at risk for lead contamination, whether through water, paint or dust, our survey will pinpoint the risk areas and we can recommend the next course of action. All of our lead testing is done by certified lead inspectors to ensure accurate results. We also offer an extremely convenient sample drop off program. Our laboratory analysts can guide you through the sample process, and in many cases your sample can be analyzed within four hours of drop off. Take the steps to keep your family safe; if your home was built before 1978 it is advisable to have a complete lead and asbestos test done on your home. Serving the Puget Sound and Seattle area, we are never more than a phone call away and our telephone consultations are always free. So take advantage of the vast knowledge available and give us a call if you feel you need lead or asbestos testing. At NOW Environmental Services we care about the health and wellbeing of our clients. Take the first step in preventing damage to your health from lead and contact us today.

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The Dreaded Popcorn Ceiling https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-testing-seattle/the-dreaded-popcorn-ceiling/ Tue, 30 May 2017 19:42:13 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=912 As with the fickle nature of our society, trends come and go. One of the great mysteries of the 20th century is the ubiquitous popcorn ceiling. Is it a ceiling? Is it supposed to be more natural looking? A throwback to when humans lived in caves perhaps? Whatever it is, popcorn ceilings were very popular through a major portion of the 20th century. At NOW Environmental Services we want to provide you with relevant information about substances that may be present in your home, such as mold, lead, radon and formaldehyde; in the case of popcorn ceilings, the concern is asbestos. At NOW Environmental we offer the most comprehensive testing solutions for a wide variety of indoor air quality issues. Additionally, we offer training classes from simple awareness seminars, CPR/First aid and even AHERA Certifications. Whether you own an asbestos disposal business or simply have a mold problem in your basement, NOW Environmental has services to fit your needs.  

The Origins of Popcorn Ceilings

In the old days, building technology dictated that plaster was used to cover the walls and ceiling. Many of the walls were built, not of drywall, but slats of thin boards and plaster was applied to the finished walls and ceiling. As time went on and the use of gypsum drywall become much more cost effective, plaster fell out of favor due to the cost. Enter popcorn ceilings. As with many other building advancements, popcorn ceilings caught on due to the ease of application, sound deadening benefits and the ability to cover mistakes. The real reason for utilizing popcorn ceiling texture varies by which source you ask. Some say that the construction industry began relying heavily on the texture as a crutch to save time during the build. Basically, a spray-on textured ceiling is much more time efficient than a traditional finish utilizing taping and texturing. One of the more popular answers is that it cuts down on ambient noise, making for a much quieter home, particularly in the bed rooms and hallway where popcorn ceiling was most often utilized.

As bad as popcorn ceilings look, they can be even more dangerous, particularly if the home was built before the 1990s. Pre-1970s homes more than likely contain asbestos in the popcorn ceiling texture. Due to the ban on asbestos in the ‘70s, popcorn texture was converted to a styrofoam base but when the ban took effect there was obviously a surplus of materials and using these materials was still allowed. Meaning that many homes well into the ‘80s still had asbestos included in the popcorn ceiling texture.

Getting Rid of The Popcorn Monstrosity

Unfortunately, getting rid of popcorn ceilings can be a costly endeavor, particularly if the texture contains asbestos. NOW Environmental offers testing for asbestos in your popcorn ceilings. Please contact us before you hire a contractor or attempt to remove the texture yourself.

The only way to remove the popcorn ceiling is to scrape. Techniques may vary, but they all include a massive amount of scraping, and you can probably imagine that this creates a large mess if not contained. Herein lies the problem with scraping your popcorn ceiling off yourself; if your ceiling contains asbestos introducing the fibers into the air is when it becomes dangerous. When asbestos fibers are inhaled, they lodge in the lungs and can cause diseases such as mesothelioma. Of course there are many ways to avoid removing the popcorn texture and saving the expense and hassle of scraping the ceiling. Asbestos is not thought to be dangerous if it is not introduced into the air and many companies are able to seal up the ceiling, rendering the asbestos, tainted texture inert. The next, most common way to cover up the asbestos popcorn texture is to mount a new ceiling right to the old one. One technique is to fit acoustical tiles directly onto the ceiling, another is framing out the ceiling and drywalling it in. Some homeowners have simply elected to leave their asbestos ceiling and keep their home in original condition. The problem is, one never knows when asbestos will be introduced into the air. Whatever your feelings about popcorn ceiling it is best to have your home tested for indoor air quality by the experts at NOW Environmental Services. We offer complete asbestos surveys and analysis, utilizing AHERA certified inspectors; we also offer mail-in testing kits for a super easy, noninvasive results, generally within a few weeks.     

Contact us today for more information, whether you need training or simply testing we are your local Puget Sound consulting and compliance firm. Stay tuned until next time when we discuss lead in homes. Lead can be more common than you think and is an issue that should be addressed as soon as possible, particularly with small children. Feel free to contact us 24/7 for any asbestos related issue and until next time, breathe easy!

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5 Critical Tests for Your Home https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-testing/5-critical-tests-for-your-home/ Sun, 28 May 2017 21:22:57 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=879 Our homes are supposed to be a sanctuary, a place where we can escape from the madness of the modern world. A place where we can relax with our loved ones, and enjoy some degree of safety. But we might not be as safe as we think we are at home, and that’s why environmental consulting can be so important.

We get it, though. There are those out there that don’t want to spend the money. They might think that, unless you live next door to a toxic waste dump, everything is just fine. Understandable, but there are potential hazards that can affect you and your loved ones. Read on for 5 tests we strongly recommend having performed in your home.

  1. For homes built between the 1940’s and the 1970’s, many building materials were made from asbestos. This mineral was found to be naturally fire resistant, and was quickly used for insulation, siding, and inside of popcorn ceilings. But a linkage was found between asbestos and increased rates of cancer and mesothelioma. Certified asbestos inspectors are able to test the air quality of a home to determine if an issue exists.
  2. Mold can develop within a house due to high amounts of moisture. This can be a side-effect of catastrophic water damage, an undetected leak, or insufficient ventilation. Excessive exposure to mold spores can cause respiratory issues and allergic reactions, and mold itself can do long-term damage to the structure of your home. Sometimes mold can be easy to find, particularly due to its distinctive and unpleasant odor. But if mold begins growing behind walls or underneath carpets and floors, it can be impossible to detect unless a professional is called in.
  3. For decades, lead was a common ingredient in house paints. It’s highly toxic, and in 1978, the federal government passed legislation restricting its use. However, many houses painted prior to 1978 have lead-based paint. If the paint is accidentally ingested, it can cause severe health problems like brain disorders and damage to the nervous system. With lead paint testing, the paint is initially inspected visually, then samples are taken and specialized equipment is used for more in-depth analysis.
  4. For those who receive their water from a well, periodic testing of the water quality is critical to check the cleanliness and identify any pollutants. Water can become contaminated by arsenic, which can damage the circulatory system, nitrate, which can be harmful to the health of infants, and bacteria, which can spread pathogenic diseases. Water treatment specialists can accurately assess the quality of the water and detect any contaminants.
  5. When uranium decomposes within soil, rock, or water, the gas radon is released. On the one hand, it’s not an issue if it is released outside since it gets quickly diluted by fresh air. On the other hand, if radon is released indoors, particularly during winter when doors and windows are closed, there can be problems. Radon gas is viewed as one of the leading causes of lung cancer, and it has been estimated that approximately 1 in 15 homes has elevated levels of the gas.
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Plants As Air Purifiers https://www.nowenvironmental.com/mold-testing-seattle/plants-as-air-purifiers/ Mon, 10 Apr 2017 13:29:49 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=890 Plants are the quintessential equalizer for our environment. They are a bachelor’s ideal pet. They only need water and a little sunshine and they will thrive. They can’t run away and they don’t have separation anxiety. The plant is the perfect decoration and it makes you feel like you are taking care of something bigger than yourself. Plants also are natural pollution eliminators and that may be the best reason to brush up on your horticulture skills. At NOW Environmental Services, the core of our business is indoor air quality and we can help you identify the issues that may be lurking in your home. Toxic chemicals like benzene, trichloroethylene, and formaldehyde may be present and making you sick, not to mention mold that may be present as well. We offer testing and advice about dealing with compromised indoor air quality. We offer a wide range of testing services that can identify a multitude of indoor air pollutants, our mold testing can even be done with our exclusive home test kits. A great value, our kits allow you to receive results in 24 hours, and are super easy to use.

Mold Testing

Our mold and indoor air quality services are available to both residential and commercial buildings. It may seem like the air quality in your home or business is not entirely under your control because most of the sources are due to building materials or hidden dangers like mold. Formaldehyde in particular, is one of the substances that has gotten a lot of attention due to its widespread use in building materials. Basically, the adhesive that is used, contains formaldehyde. Things like insulation, particleboard, and even carpet, all contain adhesives that will off gas formaldehyde. The levels are generally not severe enough to cause concern but who really wants to be inhaling formaldehyde? So what can be done? At NOW Environmental Services we can advise the proper way to eliminate the dangers of indoor pollutants, like formaldehyde.

The Green Solution

You may be wondering what, exactly you can do on a daily basis to combat the dangers of poor indoor air quality. The answer is simple, plants. Keeping the right houseplants can actually improve the air quality in your home, how much easier can it get? Keep in mind, that if your indoor air quality is substandard already, plants will probably not remove all of the harmful toxins in the air. Plants, however are excellent at providing clean air to breathe in your home. These plants are not necessarily anything special, but common houseplants that will not only make your home look better but you will breathe easier.

The Peace Lily

The peace lily is what can be considered a super plant. It is a truly remarkable air cleaning plant,that filters out formaldehyde and many other nasty, toxic gasses. The best part of the peace lily is the fact that it is relatively low maintenance and can thrive in lower light and do not need to be watered as often. The downside is that, peace lilies are hazardous to humans and pets when eaten so if you have kids or pets it is a good idea to either not keep peace lilies or keep them out of reach.

Chrysanthemum

This common, beautiful flower is an amazing air cleaner. The care is much more extensive than the peace lily as you need to water it on a regular basis, still not too difficult. The peace lily and chrysanthemum are both extremely effective air cleaners and should be considered for any home if only for the air scrubbing qualities.

Aloe Vera

This miracle succulent is not only used as a traditional medicine and an ointment. It is also a fact that the aloe plant is effective at clearing toxins out of the air, including formaldehyde.

Indoor air quality can be greatly improved by keeping houseplants. The building industry is taking more and more steps to eliminate toxic compounds from building materials. That does not change the fact that these materials have been used for many years and can be present in your home. Give NOW Environmental Services a call and rest easy knowing the air is safe in your home or office.          

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Organic Air Purifiers-Part 2 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-training-seattle/organic-air-purifiers-part-2/ Mon, 13 Mar 2017 20:47:01 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=888 When we talk about environmental monitoring, one of the most important components of that is checking the quality of the air. Many of us make the mistake of assuming air quality indoors is far cleaner than what’s found outside. But a study by the EPA found that inside air tended to be 2 to 5 times dirtier than what we’re breathing when we go out. So what can we do about it?

As it turns out, we have a lot of options, both technological and natural, to reduce airborne contaminants. One of our favorites is to look to nature and use houseplants that have the innate ability to reduce pollutants. By doing this, they can work alongside air purifiers and clean HVAC systems to provide you with clean and healthy air. Yesterday, we shared some commonly found species of plant that do the job well, and we’d like to share a few more today.

  • The Warneck dracaena is a very hardy plant that has a talent for filtering chemicals commonly found within varnishes and oils. With its breathtaking striped leaves that create clusters atop a thin stem, it can potentially grow up to 12 feet high. This plant doesn’t do well with water that has high levels of fluoride. By giving it a little direct sunlight and using purified water, it will do its job for years.
  • We love plants, but we’re not so great when it comes to nurturing them. That’s why we got very interested when we heard about the Chinese evergreen. Not only is it a very tough plant, it doesn’t need much light and it often thrives in areas that are lethal to many other plants. Even better is its ability to dissipate numerous pollutants, and as it matures, it only gets better at filtration.
  • The chemical formaldehyde is found within some kinds of furniture. That’s why we like the idea of keeping a Bamboo palm close by to help dissipate harmful pollutants like trichloroethylene and benzene.. The Bamboo palm is striking with a normal height of 5-7 feet, an attractive berries and flowers that often bloom. It prefers bright but indirect light and a little humidity, since it originates from Central America.
  • The heart leaf philodendron does very well at removing traces of airborne toxins like formaldehyde. It’s a strong climbing plant with long vines that can stretch throughout the room. With minimal maintenance and only a little light, the heart leaf’s trailing vines can either fall directly out of the pot or wind up a trellis for a gorgeous effect. Be careful, because it is toxic to pets and children.
  • To look at the pale flowers of the peace lily, you might think that it’s a plant that’s delicate and requires constant care. NASA discovered differently, and they found that the peace lily not only is very durable, but also filters out chemicals like toluene and xylene. It’s a very easy plant to look after, and when you see the plant drooping, that’s a clear sign that it wants more water.
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Organic Air Purifiers https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-training-seattle/organic-air-purifiers/ Sun, 12 Mar 2017 19:14:54 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=886 When it comes to environmental assessment, one of the most important aspects is air quality. Indoor air is important in the lives of you, your family, even your pets. To make it cleaner, you can certainly go greener with cleaning supplies, make sure your HVAC system is periodically serviced, and other smart decisions. But there’s another way to keep the indoor air clean and make your home look spectacular.

During the 1980’s, a study was performed by NASA that experimented with using houseplants to purify breathable air for possible space stations. The results were astonishing, and they found that certain plants were highly effective at filtering out airborne pollutants. These plants are commonly available at your local florist or home and garden store. Read on to learn what plants will help your home look its best and create air that’s healthy and clean.

  • The ancient Egyptians had a thing for both everlasting life and the healing powers of plants. That’s why they referred to aloe vera as the “plant of immortality.” They used it as a treatment method for burns, wounds, and as a natural laxative. Aloe is an ideal kitchen plant since it can filter residue caused by the chemicals benzedrine and formaldehyde, both of which are chemicals found in many cleaning products. Aloe thrives in sunny areas and it’s a snap to grow.
  • Some of us are reluctant to get a plant because we’re afraid we’ll kill it accidentally. For those people, the spider plant is a perfect choice. It’s a plant that has lush foliage and pretty white flowers, as well as being extremely hardy and tough to kill. This plant excels at removing airborne chemicals like xylene, benzene, and carbon monoxide. If you have pets, the flowers and leaves of the spider plant are totally safe for them to eat.
  • The snake plant, also known as the mother in law’s tongue, is tremendous when it comes to removing airborne particles of formaldehyde. It likes humidity and requires very little light, so it’s a great choice for a bathroom plant. The snake plant also absorbs carbon dioxide and emits high levels of oxygen, so consider putting one in your bedroom for an oxygen boost while you sleep.
  • Speaking of formaldehyde, one of the most common places this chemical is found in the home is inside the garage. Car exhaust has lots of this chemical, and that’s why the golden pothos plant is the perfect candidate for removing its presence from the air. This plant can be poisonous to pets and children, and it should be kept far out of reach. It loves bright light and doesn’t need too much water. If you place it in front of a sunny window, you’ll be rewarded by a gorgeous cascade of green vines.
  • For a plant that keeps the air clean with a high degree of style, you simply can’t go wrong with the gerberas, or Gerbera daisy. This plant blooms brightly colored and dramatic flowers, and it’s excellent at filtering out particles of benzene and the chemical trichloroethylene, frequently used by dry cleaning services. To help it flourish, simply mist it with water a couple of times a week, and give it at least 6 hours of direct sunlight every day.
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More Tips for Improving Home Air Quality https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-testing/more-tips-for-improving-home-air-quality/ Thu, 09 Mar 2017 17:58:05 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=883 On December 17, 1963, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Clean Air Act into law. Its purpose was to control the spread of air pollution on a national level, and it was one of the first and most influential environmental laws passed in American history. Throughout decades and administrations, it has acted as a shield against polluters, and it is one of the reasons why, when we perform environmental monitoring, that the outdoor air quality isn’t worse.

As great as that is, keep in mind that, according to the EPA, indoor air quality can be between 2-5 times worse than the quality of the air outdoors. Some of the contaminants we’re forced to reckon with are pet dander, mold, and fumes from cleaning products, varnishes, and paint. But there are steps you can take. Yesterday, we shared a few easy tips to improve the quality of your home’s air, and today, we’d like to share a few more.

  • One of the most common places we use and need ventilation at home is in the bathroom. It’s necessary not just because of the…well…biological aspects, but also because of fumes that can develop from bathroom cleaning products. Take the time to make sure every bathroom is well-ventilated, and consider wiring the light to the exhaust so that it’s always on when the bathroom is in use.
  • Along similar lines, may of us pull out a can of air freshener when we encounter a bad smell. But the fact is, air fresheners are full of VOC’s, or volatile organic compounds. They are made from a wide variety of chemicals, many of which that are bad for our lungs. Instead of battling a smell, try to deal with the source of the stink and forego spraying air freshener.
  • Everything needs to be cleaned eventually. That’s particularly true when it comes to the vents of your HVAC system. Over time, dust, debris, and other gunk can accumulate and cause the air indoors to become thoroughly contaminated. By cleaning ducts and ventilation shafts regularly, you can prevent a buildup of dust, keep the air clean, and make sure your air conditioning system runs efficiently.
  • Let’s talk a little more about your HVAC system. If you think about it, essentially all of the air you breathe at home is circulated throughout your HVAC. That’s why it’s critically important to make sure that the air conditioning is tuned up and inspected on a regular basis. It’s a wise investment to have a professional adjust and clean fans, check for refrigerant leaks, and clean dust from indoor and outdoor coils. When you have this done, you can reduce the odds of dust, allergens, and other pollutants ruining your air quality.
  • Speaking of cleaning, many household cleaning products are made from numerous chemicals that can pollute the air inside and exacerbate breathing problems. Most of the time, all you really need to clean is some hot water and generic dish soap. A little research will also direct you to eco-friendly cleaning products that are good for the environment and efficiently get rid of a mess.
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Tips for Improving Home Air Quality https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-testing/tips-for-improving-home-air-quality/ Wed, 08 Mar 2017 16:22:22 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=881 According to the 2010 census, 80.7% of Americans live in or around urban areas. That means a lot of cars, a lot of industry, and a lot of pollution. We’re not just talking about dealing with a little smog on your way to work, we mean that, for more of us than ever, the quality of the air within our homes is lacking. As one of Washington’s premier environmental consulting firms, air quality is a big deal for us.

We’re sure it’s just as important for you. The good news is, you don’t have to feel trapped. There are a number of steps you can take that are simple, straightforward, and guaranteed to make an immediate difference in boosting the quality of the air inside your home. Read on for a few helpful tips to let you breathe easier.

  • A common mistake people make is assuming that the standard filters used in furnaces and air conditioning systems will help to remove airborne contaminants. They won’t because they are only designed to protect the equipment from debris and dust. Instead, install HEPA filters. These are excellent for trapping over 99% of allergens, dust, pollen, and smoke. Make sure to swap them out every 3 months, if not more often.
  • Speaking of filters, remember that you’ve got filtration systems all over your home that also need to be changed regularly. These are in clothes dryers, vacuum cleaners, and air purifiers. You also want to get into the habit of regularly cleaning the vents and registers of your air conditioning systems, as well as the vent hood screens in your kitchen.
  • On the one hand, cooking meals at home instead of going out is a great way to eat healthier. However, your stove can emit filthy air if you’re not careful. Make sure to turn the exhaust fan on every time the stove goes on. Also, check the screen regularly to make sure it doesn’t get clogged up by grease, food particles, and other debris.
  • On a beautiful day, you might be tempted to throw open all the windows to air your home out and let some fresh air in. But depending on where you live, your fresh air might not be so fresh. The outside air in urban areas is frequently loaded up with car exhaust, smog, and pollutants from construction and manufacturing. Unless you know for sure your outer air is fairly clean at least, you’re better off leaving the windows closed and breathing filtered air.
  • There’s something wonderful about relaxing in front of a cheery fire in your fireplace. However, leaky fireplace flues can be a source of carbon monoxide, a gas that’s highly dangerous. Take the time to have your fireplace inspected by a professional, and have leaks in the flue repaired as quickly as possible.

All of these tips can be done by spending a minimal amount of money and a minimal amount of effort. What you get in return is an indoor environment that’s cleaner, healthier, and safer for you and your loved ones.

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Why Do Asbestos Inspections Matter? https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-testing/why-do-asbestos-inspections-matter/ Sun, 26 Feb 2017 19:32:43 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=877 Perhaps you’ve wondered why asbestos testing matters. You might have had a home inspector suggest it, and you weren’t really sure if it was worth the time and expense. We’re here to tell you it is and go over a few reasons why.

Today’s homeowners and buyers are interested in numerous details about a home, and the quality of the air is one of the most important. It’s not surprising, considering we spend around a third of our lives inside our homes. Plus, with allergy and asthma cases climbing for adults and children, it’s important to live in a place with healthy air. But asbestos can, potentially, deteriorate air quality in a big way.

What is Asbestos, Anyway?

Simply put, asbestos is a mineral that has been mined and used to manufacture several kinds of building materials. A few of them are:

  • Popcorn ceiling texture
  • Insulation for boilers and boiler pipes
  • Acoustic tiles for ceilings
  • Cement siding
  • Tape for heating ducts
  • Vermiculite insulation

It was discovered that, decades ago, asbestos has a handy property. It turns out that it’s a highly effective natural fire retardant. As a result, from the 1940’s to the 1970’s, asbestos was used on a regular basis within numerous building materials. If you live in a home built during this time, the odds are excellent that asbestos is inside somewhere.

Why is Asbestos a Problem?

It was discovered that, when microscopic fibers from the asbestos flake off and are inhaled, it can create serious health problems, such as mesothelioma and lung cancer. Making matters worse, if the person in the building is inhaling asbestos particles and smokes, their health issues can get much worse.

An important detail to remember is that, if you simply move into an old house and live there, you likely will be fine. That’s because, as long as the asbestos particulate stays within the building materials, you’ll be okay. But if materials become damaged, particles can escape, become airborne, and potentially get into lungs.

The most common time for asbestos to become a health issue is when homeowners are having remodeling or renovations done. Building materials get torn out or otherwise sustain damage, and those who live in the house or are working there are at risk.

How Can I Solve The Problem?

First of all, the wise thing to do is to hire a reputable company to perform an analysis. You might be wondering why your home inspector didn’t handle this when you bought the place. But the fact is, most home inspectors aren’t certified as asbestos inspectors. They might mention seeing certain building materials that likely contain some degree of asbestos, but that’s about it.

A certified asbestos inspector can provide you with a far more detailed analysis of if the presence of asbestos is in your home and, if so, how much you have. It’s a smart move to budget for asbestos analysis if you’re going to have work done on your home. If not, an inspection can help by identifying and materials that have been damaged throughout the years.

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Picking The Right Mold Inspection Service https://www.nowenvironmental.com/asbestos-testing/picking-the-right-mold-inspection-service/ Sat, 25 Feb 2017 23:46:52 +0000 https://www.nowenvironmental.com/?p=875 It takes a lot of things in order to live healthily, and one of the most important aspects is to have a healthy living environment. We know it’s pretty obvious, but that’s why proper cleaning and an adherence to hygiene really matters, even more so than having a place that looks good. In order to achieve that, you need to clean regularly and have preventative maintenance done, such as regular mold inspections.

That’s easy enough, right? You either jump online or grab your Yellow Pages, book an appointment with the first mold inspector you find, and you’ll be assured of getting excellent service and wonderful results, all at a reasonable price. Well…it doesn’t quite work like that. Just like any other type of business, there are companies you’d be delighted to work with, and then there are the less desirable ones. Read on for a few tips to help you choose the right mold inspector.

  • First, remember that not everyone has the same kinds of problems with mold. Some people are strictly taking precautions by having an inspection done. Others have had recurring issues, and they’re praying the problem is gone. The wise choice is to pick a company that handles numerous issues, inspections to let you know what your situation looks like, and eradication to get rid of mold once and for all.
  • What a company does is important, but how it does it is just as important. Specifically, the company you consider ought to have access to the latest equipment. They should have testing equipment for moisture testing, air quality testing, HVAC reports, leak testing, and microbiological testing. Once the inspection is concluded, you should expect to receive a report laying out how serious the mold situation is and what can be done to resolve it.
  • Next, it’s important to find a company that’s been in business for a while and has a proven track record. If an inspector has been on the job for a long period of time, they likely have gained the experience to recognize a number of different issues and have a number of solutions. You’ll also want to ask if the company is licensed and if their employees hold certifications for providing mold inspection services.
  • Take the time to do a little bit of research about the company. Start by asking the opinions of people you trust, like friends and family. Word of mouth tends to be both powerful and honest. Also, do some checking online. Review sites are a great way of getting an idea of what kind of company they really are. While we all know that some people can complain about virtually everything, look at reviews and look to see if you notice patterns. If the same kinds of complaints keep coming up, there’s probably something legitimate going on.
  • Finally, there’s cost. We get it, most people want the best service for the least amount of money. But there’s a big risk that you’ll truly get what you pay for. A good rule of thumb is to call around to a half-dozen companies and ask them about pricing. That should give you an idea of what the average cost is for mold inspection services.
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