Depending on the year of your home popcorn or acoustic spray are likely to contain asbestos, a known carcinogen. Popcorn Ceilings were very popular from 1950 until 1978, when the application was banned, because it allowed builders to obscure bad sheet rock installations. When considering doing home renovations you should definitely get a sample taken before you begin any removal to make sure you don’t have asbestos fibres to worry about.
Not all popcorn ceiling contains asbestos, even if the home was built or renovated during the times in which asbestos was most commonly used. Getting a professional to collect the sample is the safest route to take before you begin any removal. If the ceiling is not disrupted, you may wish to consider getting the professional to do the sampling.
You cannot be sure that a material contains asbestos by just looking at it with the naked eye. Therefore, treat all suspect materials as if they contain asbestos.
- Shut down any heating or cooling systems to minimize the spread of any released fibers.
- Do not disturb the material any more than is needed to take a small sample.
- Wet the material using a fine mist of water containing a few drops of detergent before taking the sample. The water/detergent mist will reduce the possibility of releasing asbestos fibers.
Carefully cut/scrape a piece from the entire depth of the material using, for example, a small knife, corer, or other sharp object.
- Collect Multiple samples from different areas of the ceiling preferably to the depth of the material and approximately 2-3 inches long. (This allows enough material for a proper sample to be analyzed)
Credible companies can get the results back in 24 hours or less if you request for a rush sample. It is recommended that the home owner or business owner get a professional to come and collect the sample to decrease the chances of exposure and the proper amount of material is collected.