Vinyl (PVC) flooring or thermoplastic tiles potentially contain asbestos, so can the adhesives and screeds have used below the floor coverings. Usually, they have around between 2- 5% chrysotile, white asbestos content. As these materials are very hard wearing, they were used frequently in areas such as stairwells, entrance hall, main halls in buildings such as schools, hospitals and factories.
Where are Asbestos Floor Tiles commonly found?
Previously, flooring materials were seen to be extremely hard wearing, they were cheap price, made them extremely attractive to business owners. Most locations with heavy foot-traffic, including places like shopping centres and clubs opted for the use of asbestos floor tiles.
In many domestic homes built before the 1980’s, if you remove any carpeting you will most probably find asbestos floor tiles that have been covered over the years. People are always looking to remove their flooring due to this concern.
Are Asbestos Floor Tiles dangerous?
Asbestos in vinyl products only becomes hazardous when the fibres in them are released and become airborne. As long as the PVC floor tiles are in good condition and are not disturbed, they will not expose asbestos fibres. Asbestos isn’t easily broken.
Who’s at risk from exposure to asbestos floor tiles?
Working in a building with asbestos floor tiles shouldn’t be a huge issue as long as they’re in good condition. However, people working directly with these types of materials could become exposed. These workers include:
- Construction workers
- Floor installers
- DIY renovators
- Demolition teams
Should I remove asbestos floor tiles?
If floor tiles contain around 2% asbestos, this means they won’t release fibres as long as they aren’t agitated. If you’re doing building works or are in a position where it’s likely the fibres could be knocked and released into the air, then removing them is the best option.
Taking a sample is the first step to moving forward with any asbestos work. This gives specialist companies such as ICE Asbestos to advice the best way in moving forward.