Between 1919 and 1990, vermiculite ore came from a mine in Libby, Montana.
It’s estimated that over 70% of all vermiculite sold in the US between this time came from this deposit, however, this vermiculite was also contaminated with asbestos. Today, this Libby-sourced vermiculite is estimated to be installed in millions of homes across the US.
That means vermiculite insulation removal is vital for most homes in the US. If you have vermiculite insulation, you most likely have asbestos as well.
Here, we’ll answer some important questions to help you understand what you should do about your vermiculite insulation situation.
Should I have my vermiculite insulation tested for asbestos traces?
The short answer?
Yes. Since asbestos is found in 70% of vermiculite insulation, it’s best to have your home checked by an accredited professional.
There are a few approaches to testing for asbestos traces. The most common are:
1. Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) sample which is tested in water for the presence of asbestos.
2. Air testing for loose fibers
3. Fibrous Amphibole in vermiculite attic insulation research method and sampling
How much would it be to have vermiculite removed from my home by a professional contractor?
The process could be costly, however, like any contractor-based project, the best way to start is by gathering multiple bids from different qualified professionals.
A tip to finding a great contractor: ask what services the cost includes along with questions about negative air pressure systems. These systems avert asbestos from finding its way into your main home areas during the removal procedure.
I’m considering buying a new home. Can I trust a home inspector to tell me if vermiculite insulation has been installed?
There are no required standards for home inspectors to follow and they may not even be aware of the risks associated with vermiculite insulation.
If the home you’re purchasing is a bit older, or if you’re just looking for peace of mind, speak with the inspector about your concerns personally, before hiring him/her. It may also help to check in with local authorities to find out whether there’s a requirement for your potential new inspector to disclose such information.
Have more questions or concerns about testing vermiculite for asbestos? Contact one of our friendly expert contractors today and gain confidence for the future health of your home environment. Call Us at 404-456-6438