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Acoustic ceiling tiles (C) D Friedman AnonAsbestos-Ceiling Tile FAQs
Questions & Answers about ceiling tiles that may contain asbestos

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Asbestos-containing ceiling tile FAQs:

Questions & answers about how to recognize ceiling tiles that may contain asbestos. What do asbestos-containing ceiling tiles look like? Can we tell from the appearance of a ceiling tile whether asbestos is among its ingredients? What were the years of manufacture, history, and producers of various types of ceiling tiles & coverings that contained asbestos.

Photographs and descriptive text of asbestos insulation and other asbestos-containing products to permit identification of definite, probable, or possible asbestos materials in buildings.



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Asbestos-containing Ceiling Tile FAQs

Asbestos containing acoustic ceiling tiles

Question: are homes ever condemned due to excessive asbestos?

Very useful article. Thanks. Wondering if homes are ever condemned due to excessive asbestos. - Anthony Kaskin 6/17/11

Reply:

Not that I know of personally, Anthony. Usually the cleanup cost is less than the value of the home; of course for a home that has been abandoned, beaten badly, in poor shape, finding the added cost of the need for an asbestos cleanup could push it over the edge.

Question: broken 1950's Homart Starspray Acoustical Ceiling Tiles

My home has broken Homart Starspray Acoustical Ceiling Tiles which were purchased and installed sometime in the 1950's or 1960's. How can I find out if this was asbestos? The product number is #8445. Help! - Anon 7/20/11

Reply:

I'd like to see some sharp photos of those ceiling tiles (see our CONTACT link at the "More Reading" links at the bottom of this article or bottom or top). From the age of your ceiling tiles, that they are asbestos-containing is a reasonable assumption.

If you need to know for sure, you can send a small sample to a certified asbestos testing laboratory - it's not expensive. (Best to check with the lab about what procedure they want you to use to collect a sample, basically you pick an unobtrusive area, avoid creating a dusty mess, wet down and remove 1/2" fragment).
of material and bag it)

Question: Do Nu-Wood Sta-Rite Cellulose ceiling tiles contain asbestos?

Nu_Wood Sta-Rite cellulose ceiling tile (C) InspectAPedia

2015/11/30 Leslie said:

I've been poking around the net trying to find out about tiles in a 1960 Maine lake house that fortunately still has the box in the attic Nu-Wood Stay-Lite cellulose fiber ceiling tiles 40-004 class d

This question was posted originally at ASBESTOS CEILING TILES

Reply: Cellulose is not asbestos but there were asbestos warnings for workers at several Nuwood processing mills.

Nu-Wood Interiors catalog pages (C) InspectApedia

Leslie, the Sta-Lite cellulose ceiling tile photo that you posted is self-described as a 12" x 24" painted-bevel cellulose product #40-004 - that's wood fibers not asbestos. These products are classifed as low-density fiberboard. Quoting the U.S. FPL,

Fiberboard is a generic name for construction panels made of wood or vegetable fibers. (Wilson 2007).

Here is how the manufactur itself described Nu-Wood panels:

Made of clean wood fiber, this new wall and ceiling treat- ment consists of specially designed and accurately fitting tile, plank and wainscot units, in large, easy-to-handle sheets. A high degree of insulation value is built into these Nu-Wood products. 

The image you contributed will be added here to assist other readers and to invite further comment that may give us more information. Thank you.

Watch out: The Wood Conversion Company who produced Nu-Wood products later became Conwed Cororation. Court documents assert that some Conwed ceiling tiles contained asbestos. - (Wagner v. Bondex, Simpson, & Conwed, 2012)

I'd be grateful if you'd take another look at the box for any other labels or markings. Please also use our page bottom CONTACT link to email photos of both sides of the ceiling tiles themselves as well as an installed ceiling if one is present in your home.

Nu-Wood is described by the U.S. Forest Service Technology & Development Program as a cellulose (wood-based) fiberboard product that was produced as early as 1938 including brand names Masonite, Nu-Wood, Du-X and Fir-Tex. Those early products were not ceiling tiles but rather wood-fiber hardboard or softboard sheets used as a finish material or as a lath or base for plaster walls and ceilings. Related products included other familiar brand names including Homasote, Beaver Board and Upson Board. These were wood-based products not asbestos products.

See SHEATHING, FIBERBOARD for detailed information about those products.

It is noteworthy that these products indeed included some ceiling products and installations as the U.S. Forest Products lab has documented, illustrating a fibergoard ceiling in a ranger station. Excerpting from the US FPL document cited below we include that image here:

Fiberboard ceiling panel, US FPL excerpted from http://www.fs.fed.us/t-d/pubs/htmlpubs/htm07732308/

However a number of asbestos and mesothelioma information sources point out that some fabrication plants that at one time processed asbestos materials also processed wood-fiber products and thus there were hazards of cross-contamination and worker exposure to asbestos in those locations. None of those references that I have read (this is not an exhaustive research) confirmed asbestos hazards in the cellulose products themselves, even though such is technically possible. An example follows:

Watch out: further research is needed to confirm the relationship between Nuwood and Nu-Wood ceiling products but we have found a warning issued by the Minnesota State Health Department cautioning that workers were exposed to airborne asbestos fibers when working in three Nuwood production areas at the Cloquet plant in Minnesota between 1958 and 1974. Excerpts and the document reference are given in the first citation just below.

Details are
at SHEATHING, FIBERBOARD ASBESTOS CONTENT

More information about the Nu-Wood product line and its producer, the Wood Conversion Company, a Minnesota firm, is found
at FIBERBOARD SHEATHING

Question: Is there probably asbestos in ceiling tiles in our home dating from the 1940's and 50's or later?

I have ceiling tiles 5028 MF4 9 REG on the back. Are they asbestos? - Patrick 8/30/11

1948 home. ceiling tiles in both bedrooms, how can we tell if they have asbestos tiles - Ron 9/5/11

There is a type of ceiling tile that I cannot identify. Is there anyway I can send you a link? - Jack 9/23/12

Hi there - we have a house from 1892, the previous owners installed brown acoustical tile on the basement ceiling - sometime in the early 1990's we believe. They are brown, and almost look like they are made from dense cardboard layers or some sort of fibre board. But I am concerned that they could contain asbestos. They are quite soft those and tear easily. - Christie 11/12/11

We bought a house that was built in the 50's - it has what I THINK is a Celotex ceiling (or some copy of Celotex) - it's in horrible shape and needs to be taken down - what are your thoughts on it containing asbestos, considering the age? - Saundra 11/22/11

Reply:

Ron and the others in the asbestos-suspect ceiling tile cases above: if you know the ceiling was installed before the early 1980's it's safe to assume it contains asbestos if it looks like the products shown in this article. If you need to know for sure you'll want to send a small sample to a certified asbestos testing laboratory. Otherwise, treat the material as "PACM" - presumed asbestos-containing-material.

Jack: to send us a photograph of ceiling tiles, which you are welcome to do, use the email link found at the CONTACT link you'll see at the top, left side, and bottom of all pages at InspectAPedia

Christie: a ceiling product purchased in the 1990's would not be expected to contain asbestos.

Saundra, thanks for the important Celotex ceiling tile asbestos question. I've prepared a detailed answer and posted it in the article above under FAQs - please take a look and ask if you have further questions. Thanks. DF

Question: do leaks from above increase the asbestos hazard from ceiling tiles?

I am living in a duplex two level apartment on the bottom floor. The apartment has lead paint and the exact ceiling tiles above. I moved in 3weeks ago and the ceiling has been leaking every time it rains for the past 3 weeks. I need to know if this increases the health hazards dealing with asbestos and lead paint.

Thanks,
Joan 9/8/11

Reply:

Seems likely that the answer is yes, Joan if the materials you describe are softened, damaged, falling, or later just more easily disturbed due to changes in their stability and security.

Question: big smooth ceiling tiles nailed to joists contain asbestos?

We're looking at a house that was built in 1956. It has white ceiling tiles in the basement that are nailed to the studs. They are about 2-3 feet long and as wide as the space between the studs. They are not damaged and appear to be in good condition. They do not have perforations in them. They appear to be original. Is it likely that these tiles contain asbestos? Thanks you for your thoughts. Jim - 9/8/11

Reply:

There were indeed 9" and 12" non-perforated ceiling tiles that contained asbestos fibers as well as materials made solely of wood fiber product. It would be prudent to exercise care (not making a dusty mess, leaving them alone, treating such materials as presumed-asbestos-containing-material.

Question: we shot paper clips into the ceiling tiles, now I'm worried

back in the 70's in grade school in north texas it was common for students to shoot paper clips at the ceiling to make it snow while the teacher was out of the classroom. Makes me nervous :-/ - Tom 9/19/11

Reply:

Tom, IMHO the chances are that shooting a paperclip at a ceiling that may have been covered with asbestos-containing ceiling tiles exposed the students to a detectable amount of asbestos contamination seem so low as to be beneath mention further.

Question: The hardware store employee told me I can use a lead paint test kit to check for asbestos. Is that true?

A hardware store employee told me to use the lead paint test kit on one of the acoustic ceiling tiles. He said that, after all these years (since 1965) it would show positive for lead, if in fact the tiles contain asbestos. Is this true? - Deb 9/22/11

Reply:

Deb, no, there is not one iota of truth in what you were told.

A lead paint test has nothing to do with and is not capable of detecting asbestos in building products.

The hardware store guy who told you to use a lead paint test to screen for asbestos was dangerously mistaken.

Question: My father who hung ceilings died of cancer, am I next?

My father worked in hanging ceilings or gluing ceilings for 30 years. He died of cancer in 2000. I worked in the same field for 16 years. Am I next? - Frank 11/14/11

Reply:

Frank, Some factors that would affect the risk to both your dad and yourself include the level and duration of exposure to asbestos and to possibly carcinogenic VOCs that may have been present in some of the adhesives and glues you used, and the use that you made of protective gear such as a HEPA respirator that also was equipped with an MVOC filter.

There are plenty of causes of cancer besides asbestos and glue exposure, and way too many unknowns in the cases you describe for anyone to offer a credible answer about your own cancer risk from your question alone. You should discuss the details of your exposure, materials, time, use of protective gear, dust levels, your personal health, history, genetics, and complaints or concerns with your own doctor - or ask her for a referral to a physician who specializes in environmental medicine.

Question: what should be done to make the house safer after an old ceiling has been removed?

My grandparents have a home that was built in either 1958 or 1959 and the basement has the acoustic tiles on the ceiling. (they are white and look like they are made out of some type of fiber board.) My grandfather has decided that they might contain asbestos and has started taking them down wearing a mask and using a tarp only. He has taken them all down and I'm wondering if there is something that should be done to make the house safer since if they do contain asbestos the particles have been released all over the basement. - Debbie, 12/29/11

Reply:

If in doubt about potentially hazardous dust in the home it would make sense to clean up the work area, and if dust could have spread to other areas of the home, clean them too. Damp wiping and HEPA vacuuming are the typical cleaning methods used.

Question: 12x12 ceiling tiles with gold stars contain asbestos?

My parents have ceiling tiles that are 12x12 with gold stars. They were installed sometime before 1970. Asbestos? - Anon. 1/12/12

Reply:

Some brands of ceiling tiles made in the era you described are reported to contain asbestos.

Question: how can I identify asbestos plasgter on ductwork?

How can i identify asbestos plaster and if material wrapping my duct is asbestos I am in a brick home that's about 100 years old - James Pitt 2/4/12

Reply:

James, for a definitive identification of asbestos material you will need to send a sample to a certified asbestos testing laboratory. However many insulating materials on ducts and piping are recognizable as asbestos materials by eye as in some cases there was no other product that looked the same that was not asbestos containing.

For pipe insulation see (links at the "More Reading" links at the bottom of this article ) ASBESTOS PIPE INSULATION

For HVAC duct insulation photos see ASBESTOS DUCTS, HVAC and also
ASBESTOS DUCT INSULATION, Asbestos Paper

Question: pebble textured ceilings contain asbestos?

We are moving into a property with white ceiling tiles with a pebbly texture on them. I noticed a red, packed-earth like substance erupting from one point near the edge of the tiles - could this be asbestos? - Eamon 3/21/12

Reply:

Eamon what you describe does not sound like asbestos but please understand that from just a text comment like yours I can't really know what you're seeing. Certainly there was use of asbestos in some textured ceiling paints including spray-on pebble like surfaces. But ceiling tiles may or may not contain asbestos depending on the brand, product number, and era of production.

The red eruption you describe is more likely due to a leak above - take a look in the ceiling or at plumbing in the floor above.

Question: how should we deal with 1960's 12x12 ceiling tiles?

I think the ceiling tiles at the family farm home...house was built in 1961 has the 12 x 12 ceiling tiles. Would it be best to leave the tiles? and add new firring strips and cover with drywall. Or take down the tiles...They are not coming down but we want to update the room. - Barbara 3/26/12

Reply:

Barbara, I'd leave the ceiling tiles in place and fur over them as you suggest - it's better not to disturb asbestos-suspect material as long as you can avoid spreading it in the building. So yes, I like your solution.

Question: the 1970's acoustic tile ceiling fell in my apartment, I did some amateur cleanup work, now how do I make the area safe?

Last night about 20 ceiling tiles made well before the 70's fell in my bedroom in the middle of the night. They are made of a fibrous materials, and appear to be painted white. I probably breathed the dust and fumes for a good 10 minutes or more, and then, also regrettably, used my vacuum for clean-up. I presume from what you have stated that I 'may' have been exposed to quite a bit of asbestos. What ought to be my next steps to minimize the impact on me physically, and going forward in terms of speaking to the landlord for creating a safe environment? - Bill 6/22/12

Reply:

Bill, if the ceiling fell because it was wet, that may have minimized the particle release, but I agree that considering the age of the material it's prudent to treat it as "PACM" - presumed asbestos containing material. That means damp wiping & HEPA Vacuuming - more important to clean up dust on all surfaces than before, as you aerated dust with your conventional home vacuum. You are not obligated to nor expected to be an asbestos cleanup expert - so the mistake of household vacuuming is not IMHO a crime, but it would be smart to

- clean up thoroughly
- determine why the ceiling fell and fix that
- if necessary, install a new layer of ceiling that avoids a repeat of the trouble

In most leases the landlord is not required to give much to the tenants, but is expected to provide safe, habitable, functional living space. In my OPINION that includes dealing with the matter you've described and making sure that the building is safe and habitable, and if s/he's smart, reporting to you on what needs to be done or has been done.

Take a look at RENTERS & TENANTS GUIDE TO MOLD & INDOOR HAZARDS - as it gives advice for tenants and landlords about dealing with potential indoor air quality matters.

Question: Asbestos firm says ceiling tiles without brown spots should be tested

My basement ceiling has 16 x 16 white ceiling tiles. Two fell down today and I pickeed them up, moved them and walked around the room. Subsequently I moved thru the house completely. I called an asbestos firm (closed on Saturday) and asked a question. He said "Do they have brown spots?" No they don't. He said to break one and send him the piece which he would send for testing. The tiles were probably installed about 60 years ago. I now note that several more tiles are about to fall. Procedure? - Joan W 6/23/12

Reply:

Joan if you want to test a fragment for asbestos there is no reason you could not send it directly to a lab of your choice. Meanwhile to be cautious avoid a dusty demolition project. Often a simple staple or finishing nail can hold a ceiling tile in place pending a decision to act.

Question: Fiberboard stuff in my attic is tan and butterscotch colored - is it asbestos?

Hello. i live in Worcester Massachusetts in a home built in 1947. the attic has some fiberous board nailed in place, which there is not much of, but it looks like it was done by a previous homeowner. it is cut into various shapes. but the color is light tan on one side and a butterscotch on the other. i am worried this is Asbestos. i can see no identifying mark on the stuff. we also have an old drop ceiling in the basement, 2 x 4 foot panels fiberous material painted white on one side. both materials can be broken very easily into small pieces. - Jon 6/26/12

Reply:

Jon, look through the article above and also the Homasote article (link at the "More Reading" links at the bottom of this article ) and you may have a better idea what wood fiber type insulating board looks like. Fiberboard insulation is not an asbestos product.

Question: 12x12 ceiling tiles are wet - is that an asbestos hazard?

i moved in with my fiance, he is living in his great grandparents old house. the house was built before the 1950's. the ceiling tiles in the house are acoustic white 12x12. they are turning brown like they have been wet and are falling. behind the tile that has fallen looks like mold. i am expecting a child and i need to know if i need to be worried or if its nothing. - Emily 8/1/2012

Reply:

Emily,

What you describe sounds to me as if it would be appropriate to

- find and fix the leaks that are causing ceilings to stain and collapse
- check for hidden or extensive problematic mold growth and contamination
- take care during cleanup in case the ceiling materials contain asbestos - not to create an asbestos dust hazard, and to use appropriate cleanup methods.

Question: Asbestos containing floor tiles, ceiling tiles glued to wood, can I paint it?

My parents' house, built in 1957 with basement finished in 1958, has asbestos tiles on the basement floor and some form of reddish layered fibreboard with white surface 9x9 tiles on the ceiling. The floor tiles are starting to come off - whole, fortunately - and I plan to get the floor sealed and linoleum laid over top.

The ceiling is apparently attached (glued?) to wood - one tile has come down and I will reattach it, but the rest is solid. Should I be "encapsulating" the ceiling by some means? It is no longer gorgeous - apparently there were smokers down in the basement when my brother lived there. Can one paint such a ceiling? If so, what sort of paint would be light enough not to make the ceiling fall, and not so wet as to wet down the glue? Is there another method? Thank you very much - this page has been most helpful. - Audrey 10/5/12

Reply:

We cant say what is on your ceiling, but often a coating of lacquer based stain sealer will work well at killing stains and sealing a surface. Paints are not heavy enough to make a ceiling fall down, but leaks into the ceiling can cause that problem in a flash.

Question: Do acoustic tiles in a 1994 house in Canada contain asbestos?

We are looking at purchasing a house built in 1994 (in Canada) the whole house has what appear to be square acoustic tiles. How certain can I be that these do not contain asbestos - is the age of the home enough of a reassurance? - Christina 10/24/12

Reply:

Christina,

to be CERTAIN that a material does not contain asbestos you'd need to have a sample tested by a qualified lab.

Certainly the age of the home is new enough that one would not expect asbestos ceiling tiles to have been used - someone would have had to get a hold of old materials.

Question: should I test a drop ceiling installed in 1976

My home was built in 1976. The basement has a drop ceiling that was installed at some point after that. Should I have the tiles tested? - Mike 10/31/12

Reply:

Mike,

Based on the age of the house, it's possible that your ceiling contains asbestos.

You can have a fragment of ceiling mateial tested for asbestos content at rather low cost, typically around $50. by calling any certified asbestos testing lab for instructions and fee schedules. (Don't send our forensic lab a sample - it'd be a conflict of interest).

Or you can treat the material as "Presumed Asbestos Containing Material" (PACM) and handle it accordingly.

Question: Possible asbestos content in popcorn ceilings in an older home - also mold & asthma worries

i live in san diego,ca in a 1936 old house that has mold inside as well as outside the home my friend was born in this house and he said the wall paper the popcorn ceiling carpet doors windows cabin ts still the same since he was a lil child he is now 50 yrs old i been gettin sick nausa headache been hospitalize for asthma attack me and my daughter - Trina 11/13/12

Reply:

Trina,

Check with your doctor, but I don't think asbestos exposure produces asthma. In an older home that has not been cleaned nor updated, there could certainly be various respiratory irritants, insect fragments, mold, animal allergens, dust mites etc.

However, popcorn ceilings that are old often used asbesos fibers and filler in the coating.

Search inspectApedia for MOLD / ENVIRONMENTAL EXPERT, HIRE ? for help in deciding ifit is appropriate to hire an expert to nspect your home.

Question: worry about remodeling fiberboard panels in a 1959 Pontiac Chief mobile home

I have an 1959 Pontiac Chief mobile home and the 4' fiberboard panels that run the width of the trailer need to be replaced. Is it possible that they would have asbestos? - Bill 11/14/12

Reply:

Bill,

If you are describing a cement board in a 1959 mobile home, yes there's a good chance that the board contains asbestos. It's not a friable material, so if you can replace the material without creating a dusty mess that's good. That means pulling nails or removing fasteners and removing the pieces whole;

DO NOT run power tools like saws or grinders on asbestos-cement suspect materials.

More advice on minimizing the asbestos hazard for a case like the one you describe is in our article ASBESTOS REMOVAL, WETTING GUIDELINES

If the fiberboard panels you are describing are a wood fiber product (see SHEATHING, FIBERBOARD) that's not an asbestos material.

Question: worry about asbestos in old square ceiling tiles - do we peek, remove, or cover-up the ceiling during restoration

My home has ceiling tiles similar to the those described as older square ceiling tiles with a smooth ceiling tile finish. The house was built in 1898, and only the two living rooms contain the tile ceiling. Do we dare peek underneath the tile and disrupt any possible asbestos while we under go the restoration or cover up the tile that may result in bigger problems down the road?? - Reno 11/23/12

(Mar 5, 2014) Anonymous said:

If a tile ceiling from the 70's is still intact, with absolutely no crumbling or falling apart, and has recently had a coat of paint put over it, is there any cause for concern that it may possibly be asbestos!?

Reply:

Home Reno, and Anonymous:

Asbestos containing materials are not radioactive - that is, covered-up or encapsulated the material is not harmful.

In general, if conditions permit encapsulation or covering-over of asbestos containing materials (ACM), that is the approach that puts the property at least risk of asbestos contamination, since you're disturbing the marerial as little as possible, and certainly less than if you had it removed.

The asbestos-cover-over caveat that occurs to me is not so much with ceilings as with piping. If we encapsulate ACM covered heating pipes we might figure that some day over the life of the system someone is going to have to disturb that material to replace or repair a leaky pipe. (Though that's probably still less total asbestos disturbance than would be caused by removal).

The ceiling tiles should be treated as presumed to contain asbestos. That means that should demolition or disturbance become necssary for some external reason appropriate precautions should be taken.

That caveat does *not* mean that the ceiling should be removed. Coated, sealed, undamaged, and in an area where damage is not likely rhe safest course is to leave it alone. In the condition you describe it's doubtful that one could detect airborne asbestos from that source.

Question: we burned some old tiles - does that mean they didn't contain asbestos

Some old tiles got into our burn pile. They burned very easily. Am I wrong to assume asbestos products don't burn easily? - Tony 1/3/2013

Reply:

Well yes, sort-of. Some asbestos containing materials include a mix of other fibers and contents too. In that case the asbestos itself would not burn but the other products could - leaving ash that contains asbestos. We did a literature search for asbestos content in ceiling tile ash but couldn't come up with a thing, suggesting perhaps no one has looked at this question with care. If you have any doubt and if you have ash remaining from your burn pile that you can pretty much bet is from ceiling tiles, I'd sure like to see the results of an asbestos test lab examination.

Question:

(June 19, 2014) Nate said:

My bathroom has older, (not sure exactly how old)decorative ceiling tiles in it. The outside of the tiles kind of feel like a styrofoam type material. However the inside of the tile is a brown, fiberboard type material. No straight fibers. The little that came loose crumbled quite easily when I picked it up. Does it sound like it could be asbestos?

(June 19, 2014) Anonymous said:

I also uncovered some loose plaster-type stuff on my upstairs ceiling. It has what looks like hair sticking out of it. It's older, so hardtop say what color it originally was. Did the older plaster contain asbestos? It is attached to my upstairs ceiling, and it's also in between the ceiling boards.

(June 23, 2014) Anonymous said:

Would a picture help? How do you post pictures on here? I am going to get it tested, but getting someone out to get a sample isn't that easy around here.

Reply:

Anon, one cannot be sure of the presence or absence of asbestos from just your note but your first comment sounds like a wood fiber product.

Old plaster indeed was made using horsehair as an ingredient. How Los is your building?

Some plaster and plasterboard products did contain asbestos.

 

Anon you can use the CONTACT link to send us photos for screening and posting and comment. - Editor.

(June 23, 2014) Anonymous said:

If it helps, the house was built in 1940. I am presuming the tiles are the ones put up when the house was built. The bathroom tiles were previously tested I just found out and contain no asbestos. However there are tiles upstairs which are crumbling. They are white on the outside, with a wood-type material underneath. No fine fiber bundles or needle like fibers. I will post a pic of those ASAP, and will also have them tested. This is SO frustrating trying to figure out what contained asbestos and what did not.

Anon,

Asbestos fibers are so small that you would not see them individually without a microscope and most likely a high powered one using polarized light or other special means.

Most often wood fiber materials are just that.

Figuring out what contained asbestos can indeed be tricky since we've documented that the material was very widely used across a stunning range of products (Asbestos has some wonderful properties) and more, it was used in both fibrous form and in powder form as a filler.

Thanks to a combination of research, Rosato's original text, and periodic perusal of other asbestos information sources, our list of asbestos-containing-products found at

inspectapedia.com/hazmat/Asbestos_Products.php

along with some supplementary citations from Rosato that we include
forms perhaps the most-comprehensive list of asbestos-containing materials one might find.

When you are not faced with a decision about undertaking a costly renovation or cleanup project that turns on confirming asbestos material for sure (which needs lab testing), I'm unclear on the cost-justification of sample testing and generally advise that it would simply be prudent to treat the suspect material, such as flooring or ceiling tiles, ask "presumed asbestos-containing materials" or "PACM" = which means don't grind, sand, or disturb them if it can be avoided, cover and leave in place if possible, and don't panic (which subjects the panic-stricken to price gouging).

Question:

(June 30, 2014) Anonymous said:

Are wood fiber tiles usually brown inside? Ceiling tiles I have and worry about are brownish-orange inside with a white surface coating. There is no information on brand or when they may have been manufactured. A sample is being sent for testing, but until the result comes back I figured I'd ask around.

Reply:

Anon,

Typically wood fiber ceiling tiles are brown, tan, yellow inside; keep us posted on what your test results indicate and we may be able to offer further advice.

Question: how can I tell if my ceiling tiles are made of asbestos

(Aug 11, 2014) Anonymous said:

how can I tell if my ceiling tiles are made of asbestos

Reply:

For a definitive answer you'd need to collect a small sample of the ceiling tile and have it tested by a certified asbestos testing lab.

Question:

(Sept 7, 2014) Anonymous said:

The previous owner of our home finished the basement in the late 60s or early 70s. He used 12" x 12" x 5/8" white ceiling tiles from Sears. They came 52 in a box. The product number was 648505. Do you know if they contain asbestos?

Linda C.

(Sept 22, 2014) Jean said:

Question: Is it okay to paint over asbestos ceiling tile?

Reply:

Jean

Yes painting over an asbestos-suspect ceiling tile should be OK if the ceiling material is intact, undamaged, soundly secured, undamaged, not dropping pieces into the occupied space.

Question: which part of the ceiling tile should be tested for asbestos?

30 Oct 14 Ceiling Tile layers said:

Daniel: I recently took a sample of my ceiling tile to have it test for asbestos. When I pulled the sample, I didn't realize the tile basically has three layers, the Outer Layer (Visible to us and test to be paint/binder ), the inner layer (The brown fibrous material which tested to be cellulose filler), and the back side which appears to be white (which I didn't get a sample to test). My question is if a ceiling tile contains asbestos, would it have been found in the 2 layers that I had test or does it only reside on that last layer (the back side of the tile)? Do you think I'm in the clear or should that last layer be tested too?

Thanks
Brad

Reply:

Smart question, Brad. Bottom line: I don't know but my OPINION is that the most important material to test would have been the main body or center of the ceiling tile as that's the component most likely to contain asbestos. Asbestos was added in both fiber form (strength) and fine powder form (body filler) in products such as floor tiles and some ceiling tiles.

If you are talking about your own ceiling and are not faced with having made a dusty mess of demolition and if it were me, my OPINION is that you can stop here. If there are extra reasons to be concerned, such as planned demo, visible damage and dust, then I'd collect both a settled dust sample and surface samples for three more tests.

Question: asbestos not found in brown iner layer of ceiling tiles but what about the outer layers?

(Oct 30, 2014) Ceiling Tile layers said:
Daniel: I recently took a sample of my ceiling tile to have it test for asbestos. When I pulled the sample, I didn't realize the tile basically has three layers, the Outer Layer (Visible to us and test to be paint/binder ), the inner layer (The brown fibrous material which tested to be cellulose filler), and the back side which appears to be white (which I didn't get a sample to test).

My question is if a ceiling tile contains asbestos, would it have been found in the 2 layers that I had test or does it only reside on that last layer (the back side of the tile)?

Do you think I'm in the clear or should that last layer be tested too?

Thanks
Brad

Reply:

Smart question, Brad. Bottom line: I don't know but my OPINION is that the most important material to test would have been the main body or center of the ceiling tile as that's the component most likely to contain asbestos. Asbestos was added in both fiber form (strength) and fine powder form (body filler) in products such as floor tiles and some ceiling tiles.

If you are talking about your own ceiling and are not faced with having made a dusty mess of demolition and if it were me, my OPINION is that you can stop here. If there are extra reasons to be concerned, such as planned demo, visible damage and dust, then I'd collect both a settled dust sample and surface samples for three more tests.

Question:

(Dec 3, 2014) Sally said:
I am selling a home that has Armstrong 410 12" beveled ceiling tiles in it. The question is, do they contain asbestos? How can I tell?

Reply:

You' d need to know the date of the material or have it tested.

Question:

(Dec 8, 2014) Sharon said:
Asbestos in basement ceiling tiles? How would you interpret this, is it dangerous?

Asbestos - Chrysotile 75 - 100%
Asbestos <1%>

Re my previous questions - Asbestos in ceiling tiles - The question is, should we have these tiles professionally removed by asbestos specialist or can we remove them ourselves?

Asbestos - Chrysotile 75 - 100%
Asbestos <1%>

Reply:

Yes Sharon, if the materials are damaged, disturbed, cut, ground,chopped, demolished so as to make a dusty mess.

If covered over and sealed the material has been treated following the advice of the US EPA and other experts and in that view you'd have minimzied the hazard.

Sharon if you are going to remove the ceiling it would be proper and safe to have it handled by a professional. The risk is that you cut, saw, demolish, damage tiles creating asbestos-containing dust that you track through the home, leading to a still greater cleanup cost as well as possible health hazards. A pro will use dust containment, negative air, proper bagging, etc.

Question: looking to match an antique metal ceiling

(Jan 15, 2015) Eliott said:
Hello,

I am redoing my interior and really trying to get th same ceiling tiles as the existing one. It s exactly the same as displayed on your webstie (inspectapedia.com/interiors/Metal_Ceiling_039_DJFs.jpg). I was wondering if you had the exact reference, because i am having hard time finding the same one.

thanks in advance

best

eliott

yoyotte789[a]gmail.com

Reply:

Sorry Eliott:

I photographed that ceiling in an original installation in a restaurant in Brooklyn, New York. I know it's close to impossible to match exactly old embossed metal ceilings. You might try sending a photo (or my photo) to some suppliers to see what they have that's close.

Often in older buildings where a portion of a metal ceiling has been lost from leaks or other damage the builder installs a completely different pattern and paints them to be less horribly noticeable; an alternative, still uglier, is to cover the whole ceiling with a similar pattern.

Question: advice for home inspectors about asbestos in ceiling tiles

31 JN 2015 Home Inspector said:

i wish they made a small kit that i can just take a small pc off and put it in and run a quick test. Because i think ceiling tiles are the hardest to recognize if they have asbestos or not. As a home inspector i see alot of homes with asbestos flooring and insulation surrounding the pipes along with loose fill insulation in attics. But ceiling tiles are the trickiest.

Reply:

HI

Unfortunately the proper identification of asbestos requires polarized light microscopy. It's not a chemical test.

Luckily there are some asbestos containing materials that can be reasonably identified by appearance alone (such as pipe insulation) or by the combination of appeareance and age such as some flooring.

Given the popularity of litigation you might want to be careful about disturbing asbestos-suspect material unless you're following a sampling protocol.

I add that I agree that ceiling tiles are difficult to identify by eye alone as containing asbestos or not, though sometimes there's an age indicator or manufacturer ID stamp that can help us out.

Since usually the best advice anyway is to leave suspect materials alone, undisturbed, in place, or to cover them over or encapsulate them if there is a risk of damage, your advice can be reasonable and safe in cautionary form. IMO you should not be advising people to necessarily remove asbestos or asbestos-suspect materials but should be warning them about disturbing it and of course should be warning if suspect material is friable, damaged, in poor condition, being tracked around a building.

Question: possible hazards from collapse of drop ceiling tiles

(Feb 1, 2015) harry said:
Back in 2004, while living in Philadelphia, the drop ceiling caved in in the apartment I was renting. I was in the shower at the time, heard a loud CRASH, stepped out of the shower to see the drop ceiling all over the floor and the air filled with dust. I definitely stepped out into this stuff in a state of confusion and quickly threw on some clothes and ran to the real estate office to report what happened.

It never occurred to until just now that maybe this stuff contained asbestos?? It was the type of drop ceiling that was suspended below the actual ceiling on a metal grid. The whole metal grid caved in brining the drop ceiling down. Pieces everywhere. I believe that a metal lighting fixture that housed florescent bulbs pulled the metal grid down and the tiles with it.

Once I reported what happened, the real estate agency sent someone to clean the place up (removing all of the grid, broken tiles, cleaning all debris) and they paid for all of my clothing that got dust on it to be cleaned. I stayed in the place for a few more months before moving out.

I have no way of testing the tiles, obviously, as the real estate agency sent someone to clean up the place ten years ago. love. I'm actually kind of a little worried here. Should I call the real estate agency? Not sure what the heck good that would do.

I'm suddenly really concerned. This was ten years ago. What should I do? Should I not worry? Probably wasn't asbestos? Arghh.

Reply:

Harry,

You're asking about an unknown material that fell in more than a decade ago. We can't make an accurate guess at what risks you may have faced. Generally the risk would be a function of

- what hazardous materials were present
- exposure level
- exposure duration
- personal health and susceptability

Question: asbestos in plaster from 1903?

(Feb 10, 2015) Sharon said:
Our church was built in 1903, would the ceiling plaster contain abestos?

Reply:

Sharon,

One cannot assert whether a ceiling contains asbestos or not from a simple e-text query. I don't mean to sound glib. We don't know: what material is on the church ceiling, when it was installed or modified, nor what it contains. Older forms of plaster are typically composed of lime, mortar, horsehair and other additives. But we can't even guess what your ceiling may contain.

IF there is a reason to be concerned, such as a need for disturbance, demolition, repair or other dusty procedures, and if no one knows what material is installed, it would be prudent, and inexpensive (about $50. U.S.) to have a certified asbestos lab test a representative sample of the ceiling material.

See ASBESTOS TESTING LAB LIST for access to certified asbestos testing labs in the U.S. or if you're in another country just ask me for further help.

Question: are 10 year old acoustic ceiling tiles toxic?

(Feb 19, 2015) Sandy Lampinen feb 19, 2015 said:
We are removing armstrong acoustical fireretardant ceiling panels.The box of extras says contractor series, commercial equivalent (770), bp935 a 08, random textured, 24" x 24". These were installed approx 10 years ago. Do they present a danger now being removed? Are they a toxic material?

Reply:

No. One would not expect a ten year old ceiling product to contain asbestos.

Question: Should unpainted asbestos ceiling tiles be painted over?

(Mar 6, 2015) Concerned said:
Should unpainted asbestos ceiling tiles be painted over?

Reply:

Painting the ceiling is optional and not required if it's in good condition.

Question: is the light gray powder on my floors asbestos from the ceiling tiles?

(May 19, 2015) Christine said:
I live in an old school building and when I sweep my floor I get a lite grey gritty powder on my floor.Is this stuff possibly asbestos falling from my ceiling tiles?Thank you.

Reply:

I can't say, Christine as we don't know what your ceiling is. It's not costly (about $50. U.S.) to have a certified asbestos test lab examine a dust sample. But before spending even that you might ask about just what are the components of the building ceiling. It would be quite odd for so much of any ceiling product to be falling onto the floor below that you'd get a regular amount of dust or debris sufficient in quantity that you'd see it whenever you swept the floors.

See

ASBESTOS TESTING LAB LIST and

(May 19, 2015) Christine said:
Thank you Joe for replying back to my question.I have square,drop ceiling tiles.I did see a picture of the kind I have on this sight somewhere.They are painted over and in good condition and when I ask the maintenance guy about the dust he said it was paint falling from the tiles.I told him it was not because I also get little paint balls that I can identify. It is the white/ blueish powder stuff that I find on the floor.The school building is @ 100yrs old and some residents have bad ceiling tiles and have the same thing occurring and some believe there is possible mold in there tiles and through out the building especially in the laundry room.

There is always a problem with overflowing toilets and other things causing water damage.Just this past winter a pipe broke in laundry room and flooded the floor.I understand by what I am asking you it is hard to answer,but I would like to ask you could this mold and maybe asbestos ,if a women were pregnant, living under these conditions,could it cause the baby to be born with kidney disease? I ask this because my granddaughter was born with kidney disease.The doctors cannot find the cause of her kidney disease.

She is three years old now and just received a kidney transplant and we were very concerned as still are the affects of her living in these conditions.For what I've been told in past five years living here that he owners do as little as possible as far as maintenance goes. I have been diagnose with COPD and have breathing problems and chest pains and fluids in my lungs and sinuses all the time.I understand if you cannot give me an answer and I know about testing and all,but money is tight and cannot afford. THANK YOU FOR CARING,GOD BLESS.

Reply:

Christine,

I have sympathy for the question about health risks to pregnant women and babies, but that is a question that you need to ask your doctor.

And before getting too scared about what's falling off of the ceiling (or coming from somewhere else) there are two approaches that make sense to me:

1. a professional inspection of the building to identify visual evidence of health or safety hazards, for example: visible mold over more than 30 sq.ft. of contiguous material, a history of sewage backups not properly cleaned, visible, obvious asbestos that is in fragile condition or being damaged or spread in the building, lead paint hazards, slip trip and fall hazards, etc.

2. to investigate specific dust samples that represent common building conditions, I'd send a representative sample or two to a professional.

Question: relating asbestos & lead hazards in buildings

(May 19, 2015) Christine said:
Hello again,does lead @ asbestos abatement have anything to do with lead paint?We are also given a warning when we move in that the building and apartments have lead paint through out.Thanks again.God bless.

Reply:

Asbestos and lead are completely separate hazards except that work on a building might disturb either of them if they are present in or on building materials or surfaces.

Question: smoke alarm sounded and ceiling tiles fell down

(June 3, 2015) Anonymous said:
Dear Dan, My mom has a basement that was finished in the late 1960's with a drop ceiling. On Mother's Day the smoke alarm went off in the basement and we all ran down. Many ceiling tiles were falling out of the ceiling and the ceiling was sagging down by 1 - 1 1/2 feet. We quickly held up the ceiling while my mom got nails so we could nail the ceiling back up to the rafters so it wouldn't all come crashing down.

There was a lot of dust in the air. Unfortunately, my mom, who is 79 and already has compromised lungs, started coughing the next day and continued to deteriorate. She ended up having to go in the hospital and was there for a week. In the beginning she was coughing up the dust. Now she is back home and we are talking to contractors who specialize in remodeling and removal about getting the tiles down.

We had a plumber come to look for a leak that might have caused this to happen. A leak was not found. The remodeling/removal fellow told me that he didn't think the tiles had asbestos "not in ceiling tiles". He has a great reputation so I am surprised he would say this but maybe he wants the work. Because there is no "cause" except perhaps old age, my mom is going to have to pay for it all herself. I still feel dust in the air and she cannot go in the basement in this condition. What do you suggest?

Reply:

Anon

In my opinion even if there were no asbestos, exposure to a high level of dust in an older home could be a serious respiratory irritant; other dust components can be irritating, allergenic or pathogenic such as mold or insect fragments or even just find particles of wood-fiber based ceiling tiles if they do not contain asbestos.

TO know what your mom was exposed to you might collect a tape sample of representative dust and have it characterized by a forensic lab. Ask her doctor if she or he agrees that that would be helpful. You might have a ceiling tile fragment tested as well. Typically a lab test for asbestos costs about $50. or a bit less.

You can either perform the clean-up presuming that there is asbestos-containing dust (hire a professional, set up air control, HEPA vaccuuming etc). or wait for that test result.

I would not permit further demolition or renovation work to proceed without proper handling of the dust and debris lest an amateur spread further dust throughout the home thus requiring still further cleanup.

Question: do these ceiling tiles contain asbestos? Is this bowed sagged drop ceiling tile an asbestos hazard?

Sagging suspended ceiling tile (C) InspectAPedia.com

(June 6, 2015) Anonymous said:
Do 1'x1' ceiling tiles possibly contain asbestos? The type you would staple to furring strips.

(June 6, 2015) Sam said:
My family just moved into a condo built in 1966. The shared laundry room is 2 stories below our unit and has several ceiling tiles in disrepair. Several have modest water stains. You can see an example tile bowing, with a small amount of material hanging off the left side in the photo below.

There are no plans for renovation. As long as the ceiling tiles are left alone are they reasonably safe or is it risky to do our laundry in that room? I'd like to know if a harmful level of asbestos particles are likely to be in the air or to get onto our clothes from the open washing and drying machines. Thank you.

Reply:

Sam:

A review of the US EPA and other expert advice on asbestos generally advises that if the materials are not damaged, shedding, or in an area likely to be damaged and disturbed, the lowest risk is achieved by leaving the material alone. We cannot tell from just looking if your sagging suspended ceiling tile contains asbestos or not - you'd need to have a lab test performed or to know the brand or the age or dates of manufature of the ceiling material.

(10 June 2015) Sam said:
Thanks Dan. Do you know what constitutes damaged or shedding? I'm not sure if you were able to view the photo or not. In your opinion, are the water stains, buckling tiles, or fragments hanging down from the edges of the tiles anything to be worried about or are you saying if I don't mess with it, the EPA thinks it will be fine? Thanks again.

Reply:

Damaged - shedding means that particles of the product are separating from it and entering occupied space.

Friable - generally means that a material is soft enough that you could smash it with your fingers; Asbestos pipe insulation is friable; cement asbestos millboard is not. Ceiling tiles are a bit in between.

Your photo did not tell me if the warp[ed suspended ceiling tile was an asbestos-containing product or not.

14 June 2015 Sam said:
Thanks again, Dan. I am trying to figure out if it's worth getting the ceiling tiles tested for asbestos at this time. If the assumption that they are asbestos would make them likely dangerous based on the photo I would like to get them tested. If the photo would not be alarming even if they did have asbestos I'll leave well enough alone unless we decide to renovate. Any insight you have would be greatly appreciated.

Reply:

If a material is friable and shedding it could be an asbestos hazard risk.

Question: asbestos in Simpson Timber Co. of Seattle "Dectile Class III Vinyl coated decorative tiles"

15 June 2015 Ron W. said:
My mom just passed away and her house has the Simpson Timber Co. of Seattle "Dectile Class III Vinyl coated decorative tiles" in it. We are selling the house and a potential buyer asked about the possibility of them containing asbestos. Do you know if this particular type did?

Reply:

Ron I don't know the Simpson Timber brand of ceiling tiles though from a timber company you'd think the product would be made from wood fibers. It is important for both you and a buyer to avoid inappropriate (and thus expensive) panic about asbestos.

But a bit of research shows that the some Simpson Timber Co. ceiling tiles may contain asbestos:

Simpson Timber manufactured ceiling tiles. During the 1960s, Simpson Timber manufactured both asbestos-containing ceiling tile and non-asbestos-containing ceiling tile. Simpson Timber also purchased and resold ceiling tile from Conwed that contained asbestos. - retrieved 15 June 2015 original source: www.courts.mo.gov/file.jsp?id=54841 [LOIS J. WAGNER, ROBIN G. ) WAGNER and WENDE L. WAGNER, ) Individually and as Wrongful Death ) Beneficiaries of ROBERT WAGNER, ) ) Appellant-Respondent, ) ) WD72474 (Consolidated with WD72482 v. ) and WD72619) ) BONDEX INTERNATIONAL, INC., and ) Opinion filed: June 19, 2012 SIMPSON TIMBER COMPANY, ) ) Respondent-Appellant, ) ) CONWED CORPORATION, ) ) Defendant. ) APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF CLAY COUNTY, MISSOURI The Honorable Kathryn E. Davis, Judge Before Division Four: Lisa White Hardwick, Chief Judge, Presiding, Joseph M. Ellis, Judge and Victor C. Howard, Judge]

Generally asbestos-containing materials such as ceiling tiles are safest left alone and in-place unless the material is damaged, falling down, shedding, leaving debris that can be tracked through a home or otherwise made airborne. It's ok to paint over, encapsulate, seal, or cover-over such materials if occupants prefer. Unnecessary removal is actually more likely to be hazardous than leaving the material alone.

Question:

(June 15, 2015) Ron W. said:
My mom just passed away and her house has the Simpson Timber Co. of Seattle "Dectile Class III Vinyl coated decorative tiles" in it. We are selling the house and a potential buyer asked about the possibility of them containing asbestos. Do you know if this particular type did?

Reply:

Ron I don't know much about the Simpson Timber brand of ceiling tiles though from a timber company you'd think the product would be made from wood fibers.

Cited in this court proceeding: www.courts.mo.gov/file.jsp?id=54841 - this is a wrongful death lawsuit involving Robert Wagner who in 2006 was diagnosed with mesothelioma. Excerpting:

In 2006, Robert Wagner was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a cancer that affects the pleural lining of the lungs. During the 1960s and 1970s, Wagner worked as a carpenter installing ceiling tile at project sites in the Kansas City area. Wagner worked primarily for two companies during that time period, Kansas City Natural Slate and United Acoustics. In 2007, Wagner died from mesothelioma, and his wife and children ("Plaintiffs") brought this wrongful death action. Plaintiffs claimed that Wagner's mesothelioma resulted from exposure to the asbestos-containing products manufactured by Bondex and Simpson Timber ("Defendants").

Bondex manufactured a joint compound that was commonly used on construction sites during the installation of drywall. From 1961 to 1977, Bondex joint compound contained asbestos.

Simpson Timber manufactured ceiling tiles. During the 1960s, Simpson Timber manufactured both asbestos-containing ceiling tile and non-asbestos-containing ceiling tile. Simpson Timber also purchased and resold ceiling tile from Conwed that contained asbestos.  -see detailed citations at SHEATHING, FIBERBOARD ASBESTOS CONTENT

It is important for both you and a buyer to avoid inappropriate (and thus expensive) panic about asbestos. Generally asbestos-containing materials such as ceiling tiles are safest left alone and in-place unless the material is damaged, falling down, shedding, leaving debris that can be tracked through a home or otherwise made airborne. It's ok to paint over, encapsulate, seal, or cover-over such materials if occupants prefer. Unnecessary removal is actually more likely to be hazardous than leaving the material alone.

Question: asbestos in 6ft x 5 ft ceiling panels resembling false wood planks look like fiberglass?

(Sept 30, 2015) Ivan Jones said:
I recently purchased a early remodeled barn for apartment living.
The upper floor has about 6x 5 ft panels that initially appear like pattern used in mobile home walls (false wood planks).
There is bulging areas from apparent historic leaking roof and a few seams that are seperated. Upon closer inspection the flexible panels appear to have been 1/4 inch thick, and composed of deep yellow filamentous material that breaks down to small sharp fibers (like fiberglass) with relative ease.

Is this asbestos?
I can send pics and my contact is ivansheridan72@yahoo.com

Thank you!
Ivan

Reply:

It sounds as if you are describing a fiberglass or wood fiber product. Yellow filamentous material in flexible panels is likely to be fiberglass. Please see our comments above. Some wood fiber products, though described as "pure cellulose" may have been cross-contaminated by asbestos; the health hazard of the in-situ existence of such intact ceiling tiles is rather arguable and risks are probably small.

Question: ok to paint asbestos-suspect ceiling tiles?

(Oct 9, 2015) Ray McLain said:
My contractor, who has certifications for asbestos testing and remediation, painted my ceiling tiles in my basement with a good quality Sherwin Williams duration series paint to assure containment of confirmed asbestos contents. However, when the painting was completed, the small acoustic holes didn't receive any paint into them, leaving them unpainted. Could this be dangerous? My contractor says that its okay and I shouldn't worry about it. All other surfaces of the tiles are sealed by the paint.

(Nov 20, 2015) Ray McLain said:

My contractor, who has certifications for asbestos testing and remediation, painted my ceiling tiles in my basement with a good quality Sherwin Williams duration series paint to assure containment of confirmed asbestos contents. However, when the painting was completed, the small acoustic holes didn't receive any paint into them, leaving them unpainted. Could this be dangerous? My contractor says that its okay and I shouldn't worry about it. All other surfaces of the tiles are sealed by the paint.

Reply:

xRay

Asbestos that is in good condition and that is not in a location where it is likely to become damaged or disturbed is legal and is safe left in place and usually the risk of that approach is less than the risk of demolition.

Question: examine ceiling tiles or photos for asbestos?

(Nov 4, 2015) ann said:
If I were able to send you a pic or two of a ceiling tile would you maybe to tell me something about it? It has no markings on the back identifying manufacturer but after looking at pics online seems to be somewhat unique in the design.

Reply:

Use the page bottom CONTACT link to send us photos; do not send samples or materials without prior email agreement.

Question: how to test ceiling tiles for asbestos

(Nov 9, 2015) L D said:
I just bought an old house that has 1 x 1 ceiling tiles as a suspended ceiling. They look like wood fibe, almost like partical board but are very light weight. How do I tell if they contain asbestos?

Reply:

LD if you don't see an identifying mark and need to make sure about asbestos content you'll want to send a sample to a lab -it's about $50. U.S. or a bit less.

Search InspectApedia for ASBESTOS TESTING LAB LIST to see some helpful contacts.

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Or see ASBESTOS-FREE CEILING TILES

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Or see CELOTEX ASBESTOS PRODUCTS

Or see CEILING TILE MATERIALS

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