FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Does Florida asbestos testing or an asbestos survey have to be performed by an engineer? 

Nope! License testing is its own separate profession and is regulated by the Florida Asbestos Licensing Unit, while engineering is overseen by the Florida Board of Professional Engineers. Asbestos surveys in Florida must be performed under the care of a Licensed Asbestos Consultant or LAC. 

Regarding asbestos testing in florida, my home (or office building, or condo) was built last year. asbestos isn’t even used in construction materials anymore, right? so do i still need an asbestos survey? 

Yes you still need an asbestos test.  Federal EPA regulations force you to get an asbestos test  no matter when your building was built. This is because we still use imported construction materials from asbestos-producing countries. Remember Chinese drywall?  The same idea still applies.

Did you know? Per federal and Florida state law, you need an asbestos survey before starting the repair or renovation work. Keep a copy of the report onsite at all times.

Many times the local building department will make you submit your asbestos survey when you file for permit. Make sure that a Licensed Asbestos Consultant (LAC) signs off on it.  Pinellas County, Florida in particular, is known for being very strict about enforcing these laws. But neighboring cities are quickly catching up.

Remember, condominiums or multi-family residential housing like townhomes ALWAYS need an asbestos test before renovation work. Learn more here: https://floridadep.gov/air/permitting-compliance/content/asbestos-faq 

i can get a drone inspection for $100.00. why should i hire you when you cost so much more? 

It’s easy to find someone to fly a drone. It’s harder to find a licensed design professional or engineer who will perform the flight themselves and personally review the data. In other words–sure it matters who’s carrying the biggest stick, but it matters a lot more who’s swinging it.

We feel that if you couldn’t build it yourself, then you don’t have the right to inspect it. You can’t inspect it because you don’t understand what you’re looking at.

Some owners feel more comfortable when a licensed engineer and special inspector is running the show from top to bottom, and they’re willing to pay it. Other owners feel better if they spend  less money upfront–and that’s okay too. 

what about thermal or infrared (ir) inspections? these can see moisture in the walls, right? 

Lots of people think that infrared cameras can see water hidden in roofs or walls. But thermal cameras actually don’t see water at all. They see apparent temperature differences which are sometimes caused by excessive moisture. You have to know what you’re looking at and understand that some materials or more or less reflective. Or that you might just be seeing a shadow.

Anyone can go to Home Depot and buy a $100.00 FLIR camera that clips onto their cell phone. Looking with the camera, however, is the easy part. The hard part is understanding what you’re seeing and how the surrounding environment might alter your view. Ask your consultant for a copy of their training documentation from FLIR Systems Inc. as a Certified Thermographer. He or she should know  the difference between reflections and reflectivity, or why wind may throw off the readings. If they don’t, keep looking. 

Please reach out to us with any of your other questions!