Who do you guy's use for lab

Looking for a Lab in Canada. Am sending vermiculite to Pro Lab and my clients are very unhappy with the time frame.
Tks Tim

I don’t know too many in Canada. But try Emsl I do believe they are in Canada

Pro lab now has a lab in ontario I find the response time great and im 500 miles away

pro lab had results in 4 days for me where are you sending the sample

Pinchin environmental in Mississauga does vermiculite for about $150.00 (Don’t know how long though)


Try Maxxam Analytics…$150 “set up” fee for first sample to get you into their system and then $50/sample for asbestos after first. Offices across Canada.

I know its good to test vermiculite, but here in Massachusetts, I’ve had over 15 clients test their vermiculite insulation (samples from various areas of the attic) and not one has come up positive…to this date.

I don’t do the testing, I advise them of the situation with vermiculite and mention some enviromental companies that can do the testing for them.

David I have done the same, and to date 10 samples sent 100% vermiculate, no asbestos found.
But I guess it is a peace of mind thing

It depends on the source of the vermiculite. If memory serves me right the vermiculite from a mine in Montana had asbestos in it. I’ve had three clients that had vermiculite tested and all three samples had asbestos in it.

Yes Vern
The mine in Montana was the source and the brand name is Zonolite, made and sold by Grace Dearborne. That product, aparently, is the only one that contained traces of asbestos.


I’ve had two attics full of Zonolite bags and both tests came back with negative ACM’s (Asbestos Containing Materials). It must be a location thing.

Don’t get me wrong, I always warn my Buyers about ACM’s in Vermiculite, but I’m still waiting for the day when the test results come in positive.

Here’s my pics…

One house with several brown paper bags full of Zonolite…

Another house with Zonolite in plastic bags manufactured by W.R. Grace…

There are reports that approximately 70% of the vermiculite sold in NA came from the Libby, Montana mine and it all contained from under 0.5% up to 4-5% asbestos. One brand mined and sold in Canada, Micafil, has never been known to contain asbestos.

Sampling technique can be an issue…The microscopic fibers fall through the nodules and end up on the underlying substrate. So you must get a sample of that dust. I have had a house sampled by different persons show both + and - results!!!

I’ve sent many samples to ProLab and they charge $7 per sample. Thier turn around time has always been excellent.

I’ve sent many samples to ProLab and they charge $7 per sample. Thier turn around time has always been excellent.



Sent in 28 samples last year. Only two came back contaminated ( I double blind tested at several labs to make sure that I wasn’t being lead down the garden path). To the best of my knowledge ALL of the houses were treated as contaminated and had their vermiculite removed at a cost of 10’s of thousands of dollars.

Are you kidding me … wow.

Less than 1/2 that here for average sized 50’s/60’s built house. Mind you, I’ve only ran into the buyer removing it once and got the price second hand.

Was it a huge house?

*Edit: I use ProLab btw.

David, What percentage of the people buying these homes have the vermiculite tested after you warn them about it?
Also, if it does come back positive, would the sellers be responsible for the removal? Much like a high radon reading.

I would guess about 10% go through with the testing.

Absolutely not. Sellers are not responsible (or obligated) for the removal of any dangerous materials located within their home.

My clients (Buyer’s) are simply looking to renovate the attic space and if this vermiculite is an ACM, then plans for their renovation can get very expensive.