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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Asbestos Siding Removal for Historic Homes in Atlanta: Vital or Not?

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

A historic home in Atlanta, Georgia SERVPRO is available 24/7 for any size disaster!

Many Historic homes in Atlanta were likely built with asbestos-containing materials.  

Did you know that asbestos was a common building material before 1970? For this reason, when you are shopping for a new home, you need to be aware of the year the property was built and the building materials used during the building process. 

Before 1970, asbestos was a go-to building material because of its fireproof, durable, and relatively inexpensive attributes. However, building with asbestos materials was halted after the EPA banned its use in the '70s. Fast forward to the 21st century, and asbestos is still commonly found in the siding of Atlanta historic homes

This blog post is designed to answer the question of whether asbestos siding removal in Atlanta is necessary or not. In addition, we will discuss the common types of siding that may contain asbestos and how a historic property owner can avoid being exposed to asbestos. 

How to know if a property contains asbestos siding?

The use of asbestos in building materials began in the early 1900s. Asbestos in siding was also commonly used for insulation, as well as fireproofing. It is challenging to know whether a historic home has asbestos-containing siding without hiring an asbestos abatement company. An asbestos abatement company will come out and assess the property and tear off a small sample of the old siding on the historic home for further testing. 

Although it is not certain whether the siding of a historic home contains asbestos without testing, a home built before 1970 likely contains asbestos. Even natural wood siding on historic homes is likely to have been treated with spray-applied surfacing asbestos-containing material for fireproofing or insulating purposes.

4 types of asbestos siding found on historic homes:

  1. Natural and synthetic wood
  2. Vinyl siding
  3. Synthetic or Real stucco
  4. Cement siding

Rather than testing the siding material, a property owner may be able to tell if the siding of a historic home was built with asbestos by these indications: 

  • Asbestos siding is easily chipped or cracked
  • Printed information identifying the siding manufacturer and date of installation.
  • Multiple paint layers indicate age and increase the chance of asbestos.
  • Compare the newer siding to older siding areas and look for evidence of age.
  • Asbestos siding was commonly built to resemble wood shingles.

2 options for if your siding contains asbestos

The EPA recommends taking further precautions if you live in Atlanta Historic Home with asbestos-containing materials because asbestos can be disturbed during any renovation process. The best way to avoid asbestos exposure is by hiring a certified asbestos abatement company that knows the 2 best options in handling a historic home with asbestos siding, which are:

1) Covering the asbestos siding up

In some instances, the best solution in treating a house with asbestos siding will be covering it up because asbestos is only a hazard when it is disturbed. However, before moving forward and covering up the asbestos-containing siding, you should check if this method follows the building codes in your area. 

2) Removing the asbestos siding

Asbestos siding removal needs to be handled by professionals that understand asbestos and the asbestos removal process. Removing asbestos siding on a historic home will require special precautions to avoid disturbing or releasing asbestos fibers into the air.

Final Thoughts

We started this blog post with whether asbestos siding removal on historic homes is necessary or not, and the honest answer is: it depends. The asbestos abatement professionals at SERVPRO of North Fulton understand that every asbestos project is unique. Many people purchase a historic home for the look and feel, and SERVPRO can help ensure the same look and feel is kept like the day it was built. 

When asbestos siding is removed or covered up on a historic home, the SERVPRO professionals will ensure that safety is the main priority and will follow the EPA's asbestos abatement regulations.

We hope you enjoyed reading this blog post. Contact our licensed, and insured asbestos abatement company in Atlanta for any questions or removal inquiries.

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