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Old 12-08-2009, 12:22 PM   #1
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Asbestos Tiles


I just bought a 60's ranch and discovered I have asbestos tile in my laundry room in basement (approx 8 x 10). My sewer backed up and has loosened several of the tiles. I assume I should remove the loose tiles but (1) can/should I do it myself; (2) chances of asbestos "floating" around from all the water or did water possibly prevent the particles from being airborne; (3) should I have the whole floor removed? It being a small laundry room, I would just consider painting/stain the floor rather than lay down new flooring.

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Old 12-08-2009, 01:51 PM   #2
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Asbestos Tiles


You're worrying for no reason. The tiles are either vinyl asbestos or asphalt, and both contain asbestos. But, as long as you don't sand the tiles and black glue under them, you will not be exposed to asbestos fibers.

Either remove the ones that are loose and replace with another tile of the same thickness, or remove them all and tile a new floor. Let us know if you decide to install a new floor so we can give you some directions on what to do with that black adhesive.

Or, have someone removed those tiles. There are many abatement companies that will be all too willing to charge you about 10 x what it's worth.

Jaz

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Old 12-08-2009, 02:08 PM   #3
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Asbestos Tiles


Thanks - I was reading all posts re these tiles from 2008 - wasn't sure how it all turned out for "gonefishing". Off come the tiles....can I put porcelain or ceramic tiles on top of this type of tile if tiles are level and not popping?
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Old 12-08-2009, 10:19 PM   #4
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Asbestos Tiles


NO, you need to remove the tiles, you can't trust the ones that seem stuck to actually be and stay stuck. Once removed, get a wallpaper scraper to cut off as much as that adhesive as possible until you see concrete. the scrapper looks like this;

Then mix a modified thin set mortar that is compatible with "cutback" adhesive to set the tiles. Your floor is likely not flat, so you need to consider smaller tiles. The large tiles (12") may not work so good.

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Old 12-08-2009, 10:23 PM   #5
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Asbestos Tiles


Composition flooring materials from various eras have differing likelihoods of containing asbestos, and it’s common to find materials from of quite different ages in the same property, sometimes installed one atop another:




As asbestos containing floor tiles are NOT banned in the US even today, you should never assume on the basis of age or tile size or style alone that composition tile flooring is asbestos containing or asbestos free unless you are confident that you can identify the manufacturer and type of floor covering with absolute certainty based on these criteria.

So unless you can definitely identify a floor covering as a type known to be asbestos containing free based on its appearance, the only way to verify the level of asbestos (if any) is via laboratory testing.

Here's an outline of a procedure for removing asbestos floor tile from the MN Dept of Public Health, this is the best such document I'm aware of:

Asbestos Floor Tile Removal

It’s difficult to print as a web page, so I've mirrored it in printable .pdf format here:

Asbestos Floor Tile Removal (Adobe .PDF format) - Mirror at Paragon Home Inspections Chicago

Keep in mind that you will have to meet all state and local requirements for asbestos removal and disposal.
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Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-08-2009 at 10:31 PM.
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Old 12-11-2009, 05:01 PM   #6
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Asbestos Tiles


If after removing tiles there is adhesive left on floor, how do I SAFELY remove it; should I get the residue tested? Obviously, these tiles are really old - the ones that have popped did not leave any residue on floor - I don't think - what would the residue look like? Just discolored patches? (This floor has been getting very wet from sewer back up which is why tiles are popping)
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:34 PM   #7
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Asbestos Tiles


I don't get your question. Of course there will be adhesive residue left on the floor. You use the scrapper above to remove it until there is only a film. Then use a modified thin set mortar that claims it is compatible with "cut-back" adhesive to install your new ceramic tile floor. That old black-tar stuff is called cut back adhesive.

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Old 12-13-2009, 12:11 AM   #8
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Asbestos Tiles


The floor needs to be scuffed prior to using the thinset to get some visble concrete to allow the then set to bleed into.

Watch the scuffing the glue may contain asbestos.

I would suggest overlaying the cutback with ProvaFlex underlayment membrane, this saves you all the touble of trying the scuff it.

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