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Does your popcorn ceiling have asbestos?

Hosting holiday parties may have you thinking about home renovations. While the holidays are not a great time to start home repairs, many people begin planning for spring renovations early in winter. One popular idea is to remove outdated popcorn ceilings. Popcorn ceilings, also known as acoustic ceilings, were widely used from the 1950s through the 80s.

Popcorn ceilings are a sprayed textured coating that can hide imperfections. They have grown out of style, however, and can be difficult to clean. They may be a liability if you are putting your house on the market this spring.

If you are thinking about removing popcorn ceilings, it is important to first test for asbestos. Not all popcorn ceilings contain asbestos, but many do, particularly for homes built in the 1950s or 60s.

You can get an asbestos test done on your ceilings for around $100. There are also home test kits available, but it is safer to have a professional test done.

Do not skip the asbestos test

Cost-conscious DIYers may want to remove their own popcorn ceilings. This is a good way to save money, but it should not be done without a proper evaluation. Removing popcorn ceiling containing asbestos requires specialized knowledge and skill. Inhaling even a small amount of asbestos dust can lead to mesothelioma, cancer and other serious medical conditions.

If there is asbestos in the ceiling, hire a qualified asbestos removal company. Once it is removed, you can always save money by priming and painting the ceiling yourself.

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