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Is your home improvement project a danger to your health?

When you own a home, there's no end to the improvement projects you can find to do. Whether it's painting the bathroom or updating the cabinets in the kitchen, there's always something to do to improve it.

If you are looking at your popcorn ceiling and thinking that it might be time to remove or replace it, you will want to do some extra research to make sure you can handle the project safely. As discussed in a previous blog, popcorn ceilings may contain asbestos.

Risks persist even after the trend stopped

Just like shag carpet, popcorn ceilings fell out of style. Part of this trend had to do with the Clean Air Act, which banned the use of many spray-on construction materials that contained asbestos. However, the 1978 Act allowed businesses to use building materials they already had in stock. This means that many homes built throughout the 1980s have textured ceilings with anywhere from one to 10 percent asbestos content.

DIY project dangers

While working on your ceiling isn't something the average do-it-yourselfer wants to tackle, the danger of asbestos exposure should give you pause. If you want to remove your popcorn ceiling, you will need to take precautions.

  • Get a sample tested before you start scraping. Any disturbance of the texturing substance can release asbestos fibers into the air you are breathing. While it adds time to your project, you are better off safe than sorry.
  • If asbestos is found, hand the project over to an asbestos removal professional. Any substance that contains asbestos must be contained so that particles are not released into your home. A professional will have the proper training and equipment needed to remove the potentially fatal fibers.

While it may seem like too big of a project now, removing your popcorn ceiling may give your home a better look (and resale value.) It may also be a lot safer for you and your family.

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