How To Tell if a Popcorn Ceiling has Asbestos?

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Before we discovered the dangers of asbestos, the deadly material was commonly used in both residential and commercial popcorn ceilings. Asbestos lurks in various building materials and does not necessarily pose a risk until it is disturbed, but it is always a good idea to find out if it contains asbestos anyways.

Dangers of Asbestos

Asbestos was present in the material used to build most homes before the 1990’s. These ceilings can contain anywhere from 1 to 10 percent asbestos. Asbestos doesn’t cause serious health concerns if left completely intact, but because popcorn ceilings are made from very crumbly material, the slightest disturbance can easily release those dangerous toxins. 

Even minimal amounts of asbestos exposure is not considered safe. Breathing in this substance can cause serious concerns including, asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer, all of which we should try to avoid.

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How to Identify Asbestos in my Ceiling?

Unfortunately, you can’t visually identify asbestos unless you have microscopic aid, but if your house was built before the 1990’s there is a strong possibility that you have asbestos in your ceiling. We recommend that you test for asbestos if your house was built before that time period, if your ceiling is fraying, or if you’re in the process of remodeling. 

Though you can mail in a sample yourself, you should get your ceiling professionally tested and have them collect the sample as well. Collecting the sample yourself can cause you harm as you may expose yourself to asbestos during the sample collecting process. If your asbestos test comes back positive, your next step would be finding the right time to remove your popcorn ceiling.

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What to do if my ceiling has Asbestos in it?

If asbestos is found in your home, there’s three main solutions: removal, encasement, or encapsulation. Popcorn ceiling removal involves scraping off the popcorn ceiling, literally. Encasement and encapsulation are different variations of containing or painting over the asbestos infected area. Whichever method you choose, each should be performed by a professional as choosing to do any on your own, puts you at risk for asbestos exposure. 

nuwalls hawaii stretch ceiling solutions

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Statewide

Statewide Hawaii offers you a more innovative solution to asbestos removal. Nuwall’s Stretch fabric and wallcoverings not only provide asbestos protection, but they are stylish and designed to your exact need and liking. 

They are mold and mildew resistant, so you won’t have to worry about harmful effects from those either! Apart from being durable, our stretch fabric is safe and breathable. Take the step towards safe and innovative remodeling or popcorn ceiling removal and contact us to get started today.

The Popcorn Ceiling Solutions You Need to Know

popcorn ceiling

Builders in the past put all of their faith in popcorn ceilings and they remained all of the rage in both commercial and industrial properties until pretty recently. Little did they know then that homeowners today would be dealing with the consequences of exposure to the asbestos content in the ceiling. 

Dangers of Asbestos in Popcorn Ceilings

Any popcorn ceiling installed before the 1980s may contain asbestos. Before trying to remove your popcorn textured ceiling, we highly recommend you contact your health department for sample testing. Even if the removal of this type of texture is for aesthetic purposes, if not removed correctly, asbestos fibers can spread throughout your home or building environment and cause serious health concerns. 

Drawbacks to Popcorn Ceilings

Even if asbestos is not your primary concern, there are a couple of disadvantages to these stucco ceilings and much of it revolves around the work required to keep ceilings clean. It is time consuming to repair the holes or cracks you may encounter when cleaning or just the ones that happen over time. Pressing or scraping too hard throughout this cleansing process, can cause more aesthetic damage than good.

Popcorn Ceiling Solutions:

Ceiling Scraping

Also known as stucco removal, scraping of the ceiling is usually done by a specialist and the cost is around $1 to $2 per square foot. Keep in mind that if the stucco has been painted over, the process could bring more complications. In many cases, the ceiling will require some smoothing over and patching to get a crisp final product.

Encasement

To encase a popcorn ceiling means you are covering the ceiling so it can not produce dust. The term is also known as abatement, which is done with new ceiling panels, a type of vinyl paint, or drywall. It is efficient in containing any asbestos infected debris in a specific or the whole area.

Encapsulation

To encapsulate a popcorn ceiling is to enclose it with a fire-rated architectural membrane without disturbing the surface of the ceiling containing asbestos. Encapsulation is considered a safer option because you are not directly disturbing the asbestos, therefore minimizing health risks. Though, if you ever decide to remodel or otherwise disrupt the ceiling at a later date, the asbestos will still need to be addressed.

Nuwalls Stretch Fabric

Asbestos removal methods can be dangerous, time consuming, and costly, so we personally recommend Nuwalls Stretch fabric ceilings to provide a safe, cost-effective, and modern solution. Our stretch fabric has a cross weave material that allows it to breathe which blocks any unwanted particles while letting air and moisture pass through. 

Stretch fabric is also mold and mildew resistant and is easily maintained and cleaned. Not only can you create your own durable design, but we offer a backlighting option with which you are able to set the tone for your space. One of our best features is that the lightweight acoustic material absorbs all noise pollution. 

Nuwalls is dedicated to building dreams with efficiency and integrity. If you find yourself in need of popcorn ceiling removal and remodeling, contact us for a consultation!

To learn more about our other services please visit Statewide General Contracting (statewidehawaii.com).