Asked on Jun 15, 2019

How can I clean and repair a ceiling that may have asbestos?

SharonRobyn GarnerLinda Sikut


My second floor washer had a minor leak. I've fixed the leak, but am concerned about the wet, crumbly, asbestos-ridden (assuming) section of my kitchen ceiling. Can't afford to have it professionally replaced--already got an estimate. How do I make it safe and less of an eyesore?

6 answers
  • Kelli L. Milligan
    on Jun 15, 2019

    Is that plaster? Chip of loose areas and use drywall mud to repair, the try to match the texture.

  • Cynthia H
    on Jun 16, 2019

    You can buy inexpensive test kits for asbestos. Don't disturb the asbestos if it tests positive. Remediation is not a do it yourself project. You can cover it, seal it , or enclose it, but if the fibers break loose into the air, it is hazardous. If it tests negative, you can repair it, cover it, or replace it.

  • Linda Sikut
    on Jun 16, 2019

    Hi Sheila,

    You must contain it by covering it completely. It's that law in most areas. If you can't afford to do it or do it yourself, check into local programs that will help. It is a health hazard for anyone living in your home, including yourself. Where I live you can't sell a home that has unsealed asbestos or any loose asbestos. Please check your local codes right away. If it's not asbestos, that's a different story. First get a test kit then figure out your action from there. Wishing you the best.

  • Robyn Garner
    on Jun 16, 2019

    The law is: If you found it; broke it loose; it was exposed in ANY way; YOU MUST HAVE IT REMOVED!

    You cannot just cover this up.

    It is a health hazard to you and anyone who steps foot in the house.

    If anyone - babysitter, plumber - anyone were to get ill and find out about this they would sue you for more than just the house!

    There is no "sealing it up" now that it's broken open. Get it tested, don't assume. Go from there but please be smart and conscientious.

  • Sharon
    on Jul 4, 2019

    I would buy 1/4" drywall and cover the whole ceiling, encapsulate it. Then if you have a second floor washer, I would put it inside one of those rubberized trays to contain any future leaks.

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