Vermiculite is a naturally-occuring mineral composed of shiny flakes which resemble mica. When heated to high temperature, the flakes expand into a light-weight, fire-resistant, and odorless material used in numerous products, including insulation for attics and walls.
vermiculite insulation contaminated
A mine near Libby, Montana, was the source of over 70 percent of all vermiculite sold in the United States from 1919 to 1990 which also contained deposits of asbestos and therefore contaminaed the vermiculite. Vermiculite from the Libby mine was sold under the brand name Zonolite. According to EPA, if you have vermiculite insulation in your home, you should assume this materials may be contaminated with asbestos. Furthermore, testing is not necessary and may not detect asbestos due to the randomness of the contamination. You should assume that all vermiculite insulation is from the Libby mine and be treated as if it contains asbestos.
Asbestos causes cancer and other diseases and there is no known safe level of asbestos exposure. If Vermiculite insulation is present in your home, do not disturb it. If you do not go into your attic, handle, or disturb vermiculite insulation, it is likely that you will not be exposed to asbestos fibers.
Federal asbestos regulations do not apply to work that you perform in your own home, but EPA strongly recommends that you do not attempt to remove vermiculite insulation yourself. EPA recommends using an accredited asbestos contractor if you need to have it removed.
Abide, Inc. is an accredited asbestos abatement contractor licensed in Connecticut and Massachusetts with over 25 years of experience dealing with the safe removal of asbestos containing materials. The removal of this material can be expensive. However, Abide has worked with home owners to obtain special rebates and grants through MassSave and the Zonolite Attic Insulation Trust. MassSave offers an Expanded HEAT Loan for Asbestos Abatement in homes with 1-4 units up to $3,000. The Zonolite Attic Insulation Trust may provide a reimbursement contribution of 55% of the abatement cost for eligible Claimants up to a ceiling of a $7,500 removal/reinsulation bill or $4,125.
more info and rebates
Further information on the EPA’s position on Vermiculite and special rebates and grants can be found on this page in the side bar. Please give us a call and we can facilitate the entire process for you.