How to Test for Asbestos
If you think that some construction materials in your home contain asbestos, it is best practice to get the substances tested. Luckily, using our asbestos testing kit, you can do this at your own convenience, without the need of specialist help.
Our testing kits are affordable and contain everything you need to safely obtain samples of the potentially offending materials. You can then send them off in the provided sample bags to our labs and await the test results. Below, we provide a simple 8-step guide detailing how to test for asbestos, and how our sampling kits work.
Step 1 – Order Your Sampling Kit
The first step is to order your kit. Our website has a simple ordering process and checkout system. Please note that our kits are single-use only and you need 1 kit for each sample. Therefore, if you wanted to test samples of sidings, floor tiles, and popcorn ceiling, three test kits would be required.
Step 2 – Read the Instructions
The first thing you should do when you get your kit is to read the instructions. These essentially elaborate on the points covered here and give you specific info on what to do and how to take the samples safely. They are easy to follow and you should have no trouble understanding the process.
Step 3 – Gear-Up with the Provided PPE
It is imperative that you wear the PPE we provide for your safety. You will be actively disturbing materials that potentially contain asbestos fibres.
The PPE includes a full protective body suit and a breathing mask. Put them both on as per the instructions and makes sure your mask covers your mouth and nose proper. The gloves are also essential when handling the sample bag, waste bag, and tools.
Step 4 – Take Your Sample
How you obtain your sample depends on the type of construction material you want testing. Regardless, this process involves disturbing the product and potentially released asbestos dust into the air. Therefore, we must reiterate again the importance of PPE.
Regardless of the type of material, you will need a tool to extract it with. For surfaces, you will need to scrap away a sample using something like a chisel or flathead screwdriver. Alternatively, for things like tiles, insulation, and sidings, something like a pair of pliers can be used to break the material and handle it.
Essentially, you must get a physical piece of the item. After doing this, make sure that you have cleared the surrounding area and removed any mess. Also, make sure that you are incredibly careful and only remove enough for the sample.
Step 5 – Place Your Sample in the Provided Bag
Now that you have safely obtained your sample(s), you must place it carefully in the provided sample bag. If you have multiple samples, make sure that each one goes into a separate bag as to avoid cross-contamination.
Next, make sure that the bags are sealed fully and that no fibres or dust can escape. Do not remove any PPE until the bags are sealed and any excess material has been disposed of or cleared away.
Step 6 – Complete the Sample Submission Form
You will have received a sample submission form in your asbestos testing kit. It is vital that you complete this form and place it in the pre-paid envelope with your sample.
The submission form helps the lab with the testing process and will improve the speed of the service. Furthermore, it will ensure that the correct information is printed on your asbestos sampling certificate. Required information you have to complete includes:
• Personal details
• Sample location
• Sample reference number
If you are sending multiple samples, it is important to keep them separate and make sure that each one has a unique reference number. This reference is used for record-keeping and to make sure that the correct certificate is issued for the correct sample. If you did order multiple sample kits, each one should have a separate reference number.
If you don’t complete the form properly, your samples could get misplaced, and there could be a delay in you receiving your results.
Step 7 – Send Your Samples to the Test Lab
As part of your kit, you receive a pre-paid return envelope. This already has the testing lab address on so you don’t have to do anything else.
All you have to do now is place the sample bag(s) in the envelope and seal it properly. For extra safety, you could consider sealing the envelope with Sellotape. Just post it to your local post box or go to your local USPS branch to get it delivered.
If you do want your results quicker and are concerned for your safety, you could opt for a special delivery service to get the samples to our lab there quicker.
Step 8 – Wait for Your Samples to be Processed
You will receive an SMS to the phone number you provided when ordering the kit to let you know when the lab has your samples. Depending on the kit you purchased, you will typically get your results within 24-hours of receipt at the testing lab (the FastTrack package will get your results the same day).
The results are given in the form of an emailed certificate. This is provided as a PDF file that you can easily download, save, and print. Moreover, it will explain in detail the key findings from your sample and any asbestos content.
You can then use this certificate to give to your landlord, for example, if you want improvements to be made to the property. It can also be given to specialist contractors who deal with the removal of asbestos if you decide there is a health risk, and you want that risk eliminated.
Eliminate any Uncertainty and Test for Asbestos Today Using Our Sampling Kits
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us – we are happy to help and understand that you may have reservations about obtaining asbestos samples yourself. Don’t worry – providing that you read the included instructions carefully and use the PPE provided, you should not expose yourself to any asbestos fibres.