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Getting an asbestos sample tested

You can’t identify asbestos by looking at it. Only scientific testing of a sample can confirm asbestos.  Follow the golden rule: if you think it might be asbestos, treat it like it is asbestos.

When should I get a sample tested?

If you’re renovating, repairing or demolishing a building that may contain asbestos, get a sample tested before you start work. It is cheaper and easier to deal with asbestos if it isn’t a surprise.

Sealed asbestos that is in good condition is low risk. Asbestos is a risk if damaged, weathered or disturbed.

Who can test an asbestos sample?

Use a professional to take a sample and get the material tested.

Two groups of people can test samples:

  • professional occupational hygienist – do a web search for one in your area
  • licensed asbestos assessor – check the SafeWork NSW website.

The results should be on a Certificate of Analysis endorsed by the National Association of Testing Authorities (NATA).

How much does it cost to have an asbestos sample tested?

The cost for scientific testing of asbestos at a NATA accredited laboratory is between $40-$140.


Where can I get an asbestos sample tested?

You can also get a sample tested yourself by sending it to an accredited laboratory
A gloved hand holding a small pile of thousands of asbestos fibres and tweezers