Is Your Home A Former Meth House?
How to tell.
How to Identify a Meth Lab Before You Move In
Is Your Home A Former Meth House? How to tell.
Meth isn’t only dangerous to the consumer; it’s also dangerous to the future occupants of the home where it was consumed, or even more, where it was cooked. Crystal Meth is created by combining very dangerous chemicals, such as ammonia, drano, and lighter fluid.
Sometimes, when something goes wrong, these substances explode violently. But even when they don’t, cooking meth releases poisonous compounds into the air that settle on carpets, walls, ceilings, and other surfaces throughout the home. In addition, for every pound of meth produced, five pounds of deadly waste are created.
Meth Decontamination Costs
Though there are certain telltale signs that your home may have been used to cook meth, sometimes you can’t know for sure until after you’ve moved in, at which point serious health problems may already be on the way. It’s a difficult issue, particularly because there are no consistent nationwide laws regarding either the disclosure of the cleaning of former meth labs.
Decontaminating the home and property can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $25,000 – and in some cases, even more than that. These costs often fall to the responsibility of the unsuspecting homeowner, who may live in the house for months or years and suffer many health problems before ever realizing that it’s their house making them, their family, and their pets sick.
Before You Move In
The good news is that there are still resources and techniques that you can use to investigate your potential property purchase. Be sure to Google the address, and look it up in the Drug Enforcement Administration’s National Clandestine Laboratory Register. Also be sure to ask neighbors about the house’s former occupants and if they ever noticed anything unusual.
If you are still unsure, there are some telltale signs that the house may have been used to produce methamphetamine. While one matching sign may simply be coincidence, if many of the factors below sound familiar it may be cause for alarm.
Signs of a Meth House
In and around your house, look for common equipment used to cook meth, such as propane tanks, scuba tanks, camping stoves, and rubber hoses. Also keep an eye out for suspicious-looking trash, like rags with red or yellow stains, or coffee filters with remnants of a red sludge. On the outside of the house, look for boarded-up or blacked out windows, jury-rigged vents, and burned grass that won’t grow back.
Another hard-to-ignore sign of a meth lab are the smells: ammonia, rotten eggs, or fertilizer. If you detect these smells strongly in places they shouldn’t be, and you experience headaches, nausea, dry mouth, dizziness, shortness of breath, or chest pain, leave the home immediately. Call your local police department or health department for help. They can tell you how to test the house for the presence of dangerous chemicals and what steps to take next.
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Is Your Home a Former Meth House? by 12 Keys Rehab
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