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My wife and I are considering buying a house that was built in the 1960s and has acoustic "popcorn" ceilings. I want to know if there is a cheap, effective way to do a home asbestos test.

I'm still reviewing some of the inspection reports but I don't think they've specifically checked for this.

Tips, anyone?


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Just a follow-up comment/recommendation to other home owners: collect more than one sample. My initial asbestos test came back negative but that was because it was very small. I'm really glad I tested again. – Mike B Oct 22 '10 at 0:22
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Yes, you can get this test kit for about $10. You have to cut out/scrape off a sample to send to a lab. (Make sure you wet the area first to avoid any airborne particles.) You also have to include another $30 with the sample for standard analysis.

Instructions here.

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Thanks! Got the kit! – Mike B Sep 8 '10 at 14:40

For future reference- there is no need to buy these kits. They are essentially selling you a zip-top baggie for $10.00.

Simply wet the area, and scrape a very small sample into a zip-top bag of your own. Then place this bag into another sealable bag (i.e.- double-bag the sample). Then you can call one of several national testing labs, that will perform the test for around $10-15/sample, and email you the results. Google asbestos testing labs. Some labs will only test for professionals, but many will take home-owner samples- you just have to call around a bit.

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Thanks Mark -- Yea, I realized this after I opened the kit and saw the somewhat dismal contents. – Mike B Sep 10 '10 at 14:56

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