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Old 06-30-2019, 12:46 AM
Location: los angeles county
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these 9x9 tiles were easily removed from the floor fully intact. They were barely bonded, like the glue failed.
Yes, they tested positive for asbestos.

I am confused about what is considered to be "disturbing asbestos," as the #1 rule is to not disturb asbestos.
It seems just touching asbestos tile with your finger magically releases asbestos into the air.

My understand is that as long as the tile is not crushed to a powder, there is no asbestos danger.

If the tile is intact, how the hell will asbestos be released?
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Old 06-30-2019, 12:57 AM
Status: "Enjoying life..." (set 16 days ago)
Location: San Antonio/Houston/Tricity
39,951 posts, read 57,785,520 times
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Your understanding is right. There is no danger if the tiles are intact.
Remove and properly dispose them. That's all you need to do.
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Old 06-30-2019, 03:48 AM
Location: Georgia, USA
24,123 posts, read 29,203,023 times
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Old 06-30-2019, 06:28 AM
2,163 posts, read 744,693 times
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Yes, you are absolutely fine if you remove them “in tact” without chipping or breaking them. Asbestos is only dangerous when it’s “friable” meaning that it crumbled (disturbed) and enables fibers to become airborne.

You could even wet the tiles when removing them as a precautionary measure to ensure that no fibers will be released. The floor tiles that you are dealing with present little to no hazard at all once knowing they contain some asbestos and handled accordingly!
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Old 06-30-2019, 06:43 AM
Location: NC
6,880 posts, read 8,466,118 times
Reputation: 14473
Asbestos is only a problem if the very fine fibers get into your lungs and do physical damage. The fibers are like miniature needles. Professionals have more exposure so are at greater risk. Homeowners being careful like you are have extremely low risk. Just be sure to dispose of tiles properly so no one in the “waste stream” gets exposed via broken bits of tile in the future.
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Old 06-30-2019, 07:04 AM
2,862 posts, read 1,065,393 times
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Another thing you can do is tile on top of them.

DH and I had a small bathroom in a house built in 1985 with cheap plastic tile. We went through the whole song and dance at Home Depot to get a quote for ceramic tile (sitting and waiting as they poked at computer screens, called a supervisor over, etc.) and when we decided to go ahead, it turned out that because of the year the house was built they wouldn't touch it unless we had it tested. If it had asbestos it needed to be "remediated". I did some research and based on pictures of tiles containing asbestos, I doubt ours had any. (Some of the pictures DID look like what Dad put in our basement in the 1950s.)

It turns out it's also OK to tile over it since you're not disturbing it. I used Schluter Ditra underlayment between the old and new tile- have used it for 3 tiling jobs. I love that stuff. Unlike cement backerboard you can cut it easily with scissors.
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Old 06-30-2019, 07:42 AM
4,547 posts, read 7,546,244 times
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In speaking with a "flooring guy" who'd been in the industry long enough to have installed those tiles, he mentioned that the biggest issue with asbestos was the mastic (glue/adhesive) used. Pull the tiles up and that adhesive is easier to disturb, especially if it's not holding the tiles any longer.

So, there's a higher risk After the tiles are removed and before you get something else down.

That's all assuming that what's there is the "bad" asbestos, because there is non-harmful asbestos too. And then considering that all of the asbestos scare related to people who worked with it daily for decades of their life, not individuals who might be exposed for a week. It's a personal decision on risk. Me, I've removed asbestos and covered the are with new tile while using the best practices I could find online. No change in health in the decade since...
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Old 06-30-2019, 08:50 AM
Location: Rochester, WA
6,571 posts, read 3,731,814 times
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I think Brian is right the glue is also a concern. I don’t know what your plan is now but I wouldn’t sand it.
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Old 06-30-2019, 10:41 AM
6,169 posts, read 2,787,023 times
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Unless you plan to grind them up, fling the powder into the air, and breathe in great clouds of the stuff while simultaneously smoking heavily, you have nothing to worry about. The hysteria around asbestos has reached the point of absolute ridiculousness, and it's a shame because the longer this idiocy continues the more likely it is that people will start to disregard situations where there really IS a risk.

Has no one in the last 40 years ever heard of the story of the boy who cried "Wolf!"?
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Old 06-30-2019, 10:52 AM
Location: Johns Creek, GA
13,049 posts, read 50,235,322 times
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Originally Posted by Brian_M View Post
That's all assuming that what's there is the "bad" asbestos, because there is non-harmful asbestos too.


"All forms of asbestos cause cancer in humans (this includes chrysotile, the principal form of asbestos still in production and use), and no threshold has been identifed for the carcinogenic risks. This is the conclusion of WHO and IARC in a series of authoritative international assessments conducted over a period of more than 15 years."
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