Replacing Asbestos-Containing Floor Materials
For carpet selection and installation in occupied buildings, a decision may be made to replace an existing tile floor with carpeting. In this case, it is important to determine whether the old tile flooring contains asbestos fibers.
Information may be found in inspection reports under AHERA surveys and management plans on file at the school. However, the original AHERA inspections were primarily for visible, interior asbestos materials. Regulations require that building owners must have an inspection and written survey for all asbestos materials, prior to bidding any construction work.
Careful consideration should be given to the costs and indoor air impacts associated with removal of asbestos tiles versus leaving the tiles in place. Removal of asbestos-containing products may present greater costs and health risks to workers, school staff, and students than a project in which asbestos-containing products are adequately contained, but left in place.
Additional ventilation should be provided after new carpet installation. If possible, continuously operate the building ventilation system at normal temperature and maximum outdoor air during installation and for 72 hours after installation.
It is advisable to install carpet only when the building is not in use, except in small areas where direct exhaust under negative air pressure (in relation to surrounding rooms and hallways) may be applied. New carpet should be cleaned with a HEPA filtration vacuum.Courtesy of The Washington State Department of Health