It’s a pain for you and it’s a pain for us, but unfortunately, it’s the law. If you are thinking about tearing out that dated tile and putting in something fresh and contemporary, or ditching that ugly vinyl for a sleek new plank style floor, don’t be surprised if you are told you need an asbestos test. It is an additional cost and hassle, but it is intended to create a healthier home for you and a safer jobsite for the installers.
When Is An Asbestos Test Required In Colorado?
Here is the deal: In 2015 Colorado implemented a policy that stipulates, regardless of the age of the building, if more than the allowable square footage of material is being torn out then an asbestos test is required. This is a statewide policy, so any store or contractor operating by the books will require this. Below are the parameters outlined by the state of Colorado that we must abide by.
- Single Family Residential Dwellings (“SFRD”) – the trigger levels are: 50 linear feet on pipes; 32 square feet on other surfaces; or the volume equivalent of a 55-gallon drum.
- Public and Commercial Buildings (other than SFRDs) – the trigger levels are: 260 linear feet on pipes, 160 square feet on other surfaces, or the volume equivalent of a 55-gallon drum.
So, what does this mean for you? Basically, by law, if more than 32 square feet of adhered material is being torn out of your home an asbestos test is required. Floor Craft uses an unaffiliated third party to test the material and perform the necessary mitigation if necessary. If the material passes the inspection than once we retain a copy of the passed report, we can move forward on the project. If the area does not pass, then proper mitigation must be performed before we can begin the new floors.
Any Way To Avoid An Asbestos Test?
Is there any way to avoid this hassle? There are a couple ways to avoid an asbestos test that remains within the bounds of the law. Unless carpet is glued down, a test is not required. Standard carpet is stretched in and does not have any adhesive, so no asbestos containing material is used. However, any material that is adhered (tile, vinyl, LVT, etc.) requires testing before removal. The test is only required if the potentially asbestos contaminated material is disturbed (i.e., removed), therefore if we leave the material and install over it a test is not required. Only certain material can be installed over, and even at that is circumstantial.
If an existing vinyl is still stuck strong to the ground, we can install the new vinyl material over the existing and avoid removing the old product entirely. Even if the vinyl isn’t secured the best we can consider installing a new layer of underlayment over the top and then installing the new vinyl; although the thickness of the floor would increase with this method. One of the simplest solutions is to go over the potentially hazardous material with a floating floor so that nothing is disturbed. Many of the new rigid core floating floors are even rated to go over existing tile.
Those are the best methods of avoiding testing, although in some cases testing unavoidable. We hope this article answered your questions concerning asbestos testing, raised awareness for the necessity of asbestos testing, and helps customers perhaps avoid the hassle altogether.
If you are looking to remodel your home and upgrade your flooring in the Colorado Springs area, we’d love to help you. Get started with a Free In-Home Measurement!
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