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We bought a house 3 years ago - it was built in 1972. Most of the textured ceilings were already removed, except for a few. I recently noticed the texture actually extends behind the wall-mounted HVAC vents. Mostly to the top of, but also the bottom of the actual ductwork.

The vents seem to attach in a way that you cannot get them on and off without scraping some of the texture. I've never removed them before, but there appears to be loose texture on the bottom of the HVAC ducts.

What's the best course of action to deal with this?

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Chances are slim that your texture contains asbestos, but you'd have to mail a sample to a testing lab to be sure. It was outlawed in texture in the late 70s, but it wasn't terribly common for that purpose. Follow a safe procedure if you do so.

It's normal for texture to show inside ductwork, etc. The walls and ceiling are sprayed before the vents are installed, and no effort is typically made to prevent overspray. The little bit of texture that's disturbed when you remove a vent isn't much of a concern. You could simply vacuum it up when it occurs.

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