After you have decided to hire an asbestos abatement company, the process of asbestos removal can begin. Depending on the company you select, some of the processes listed below may be broken down even more thoroughly.
Asbestos Abatement Process
- Abatement begins with a certified asbestos inspector who takes samples of suspected asbestos. Samples are analyzed at a laboratory to determine the extent of the problem. The asbestos removal can be complex and includes several site preparations.
- Establishing a designated work area
- Disabling all HVAC and electrical systems
- Installation of a new electrical system to power negative air pressure units that avoid contamination of air outside the work area.
- Installation of decontamination enclosure systems
- Sealing all potential leak openings with plastic sheeting and adhesives
- Vacuuming with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter or industrial compliant wet wiping on all non movable objects to keep asbestos from becoming airborne
- Sealing other immobile items with plastic sheeting
- Covering all surfaces not getting abated with plastic sheeting
- Posting warning signs specified by your contractor
Common Asbestos Abatement Equipment
- Air-purifying respiratory equipment
- Protective eyewear
- Disposable boots, coveralls, and gloves
- HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) Vacuums
- Designated disposal and transportation bags
- Mastic removers and other chemicals that can vary by job site
- Air-locking equipment
- Negative air machines
- Various monitoring equipment
- Clean up after using a HEPA vacuum
- Disposal requires asbestos-containing waste be sealed in leak-tight containers while still wet, then labeled clearly and taken to qualified landfills that have specific requirements for securing the waste and preventing fibers from escaping into the air
- Vehicles that transport the waste to the landfill have specific requirements and labeling instructions.
Average Asbestos Abatement Costs
Asbestos abatement costs can vary due to federal regulations governing the process and protective measures taken to ensure the safety of asbestos abatement workers and the public.
The following numbers are rough averages of costs for services on one site. Costs from contractors in your region may differ.
- Initial Home Inspection: $400-$600
- Asbestos Sample Analysis: $25-$75
- Complete Removal From an Average Home: $15,000-$30,000
For large commercial properties costs can vary widely. For example, before the collapse of the Twin Towers at the World Trade Center on 9/11, estimates were $1 million per floor.
Finding the Right Contractor for Your Asbestos Removal Needs
Now that you understand some of the intricacies of asbestos, the danger it poses to you and others, the importance of properly removing it from a structure and the costs involved, you are better equipped to make the right decision.
Asbestos removal plans should meet all state and federal regulations to ensure the job is being done correctly. Contractors should also be able to provide references from other customers, as well as proof of workers’ certifications.
Before any renovation or demolition on an older building, owners should consider contacting an asbestos professional for testing. Safe handling and removal of asbestos can prevent exposure and ensure proper disposal.
For more information on finding a local contractor, check the resources below:
- Illinois Environmental Contractors Association Members
- IECA Common Questions & Answers
- Illinois Environmental Organizations & Related Agencies
If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our associates to find an answer to your situation. With more than 40 Illinois-licensed companies represented by IECA members, we believe that collective action through association is the most effective way to deal with the changing demands of doing business.Tags: Abatement, Asbestos, National Environmental Policy Act, NEPA, Recommendations