Asbestos

Until the mid-1980s, asbestos was widely used in a range of home building materials. If your house was built or renovated before 1987, it is likely you have asbestos in your home. Asbestos is a naturally-occurring fibrous silicate mineral. It was considered a versatile product, because it is able to withstand heat, erosion and decay and has fire and water resistant properties.

Homeowners need to know what asbestos is and what precautions you must take if you are planning to renovate or make repairs around your home, just in case you are dealing with asbestos.

Removing asbestos is a dangerous and complicated process best carried out by professionals who are licenced having completed the required training. If you were to consider removing a small amount of asbestos yourself, at the very minimum you would need to meticulously follow ALL of the steps described on this site in order to protect your health and that of those around you.

It becomes a health risk when asbestos fibres are released into the air and breathed in.

What is Asbestos?

Asbestos is described as either "bonded" or "friable".

Bonded asbestos fibres are mixed into another material which binds or bonds them within the material.  Bonded asbestos cannot be crumbled, pulverised or reduced to a powder by hand pressure when dry.

Common uses for bonded asbestos in buildings include: flat (fibro), corrugated (roofing) or compressed asbestos cement sheets; water, drainage and flue pipes; and floor tiles.

If fire, hail, or direct activities such as water blasting and drilling damages bonded asbestos, it may become friable asbestos material.

Friable asbestos material is any material that contains asbestos and is in the form of a powder or can be crumbled, pulverised or reduced to powder by hand pressure when dry.

Friable asbestos was not commonly used in the home; it was mainly used in industrial applications such as pipe lagging, sprayed limpet and asbestos cloth and rope.

Friable asbestos can only be removed by a licenced waste transporter.

It is Important Everyone Knows About Asbestos Health Risks and Safety Requirements

While some people may ensure they follow the regulations and safety requirements to remove small amounts of asbestos themselves, we recommend retaining a licenced asbestos removal professional who is equipped to protect you and your family from the dangers of asbestos dust.

Why Can Asbestos Dust or Fibres be Dangerous to Your Health?

More information

More information on asbestos, asbestos diseases and mesothelioma is available at:

The Importance of Safely Managing Asbestos in and Around the Home

 
 
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