Asbestos Tile! The Colors!
Posted on 09 April 2016
The 1950's were a heady time for the chemical industry. Americans were not yet afraid of being poisoned by food and consumer products developed by scientists and The State of California hadn't started declaring everything to be carcinogenic.
It was the era of doctors smoking in hospitals and arguments in congress about how unsafe seat belts were. It was the perfect time to market flooring made out of compounds of asbestos and other synthetics.
Kentile was the primary maker of asbestos tile up until the 80s, when people started to figure out that the stuff was pretty bad for your whole health situation. But up until their ultimate demise in the safe-linoleum-80s-and -90s, they produced some amazing flooring, as well as advertisements and DIY pattern ideas.
I was first made aware of Kentile products in a friend's basement. The floor had a shuffleboard inlaid into it, turning their musty basement into a fun rumpus room.
On the spectrum of asbestos danger, Kentile flooring is low on the list. As long as it isn't flaking or crumbling apart and you aren't eating or huffing said flakes, it isn't likely to hurt you.