Duct tape is a white, flat material that was applied to air ducts to seal seams and prevent heat loss. Duct tape may be in basements, crawlspaces, and walls. We assume duct tape and insulation contain asbestos and generally don’t test for it.

You should have your duct tape removed by a asbestos abatement company if it contains asbestos, and if it might be disturbed. If disturbed, the asbestos in the duct tape could enter your lungs, and cause diseases such as mesothelioma or lung cancer.

Asbestos removal can be done in different ways depending on the type of material, the location of the material, and the ability of workers to safely access the material. In general, during duct tape removal, the abatement contractor seals off the work area with multiple layers of plastic sheeting held in place with heavy tape and staples, sets up a three-stage airlock, and depressurizes the work area with specialized air handlers. The abatement workers enter the work area with supplied air and protective clothing. They wet down the duct tape, scrape it off, and seal it in doubled heavy plastic bags. They sample the air at a variety of places including inside and outside the work area, and send those to a lab for testing. Once the air samples pass the tests, the workers return to the site to remove the plastic sheeting.

After the job is complete, you will generally need to seal the ducts.

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