Home Renovation: A Short Guide to Safe Asbestos Removal

Home Renovation: A Short Guide to Safe Asbestos Removal
  • Opening Intro -

    Considering the rampage in the modern construction industry, minerals like asbestos have become fairly obsolete.

    While these were increasingly popular in the 70s, modern day construction practices eliminate the use of asbestos completely.

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This is primarily due to the adverse health effects of asbestos that have been discovered over the course of time. In order for home owners to be aware of asbestos so that they can effectively get it removed, we have put together a guidance check-list which can be very helpful for home-owners who are looking to get asbestos removed effectively.

Where Is Asbestos Found

Asbestos, in the past, was used in a number of building materials. Popularly, asbestos cement is used in garage roofs, water tanks and roof tiles, etc. Asbestos cement is probably the most used form of asbestos found in homes today. Other forms of asbestos come in the form of soft asbestos in pipes and sewerage systems, walkways, floor tiles, etc.

Safe Asbestos Removal

If you think that your home was constructed in the 80s or the 70s, it might be a wise idea to get your home inspected. Professional firms in this business sector have the right equipment, the technical knowhow and engineering expertise to determine if a residential property is asbestos proof or not. With that, individual materials and sample of materials can also be tested for asbestos in laboratories and removal centers. Following a brief discussion with the experts at Focus Demolition, an Australian authority in asbestos removal in a country in which asbestos roofs are highly present and an imminent danger for the population, here is what suggestions we have come up with.  

No #1: No Need to Panic, But Still Pay Attention

If you figure out that your home has indeed been constructed using this hazardous mineral, the first step is to NOT panic. The idea is to not meddle with existing material that contains asbestos in order to prevent asbestos fibers from spreading inside the house. Usually, asbestos minerals are more harmful if they are found in broken construction material. For instance, if there is a crack in your asbestos roof, it is likely to cause damage to the environment and to the people living in that house.

No #2: Undamaged Versus Damaged Asbestos Roofing

An inspection of the site will determine whether or not your property needs to become asbestos-free.  For starters, if the building material that contains asbestos is fairly new and/or undamaged completely, there is no need for homeowners to worry. Undamaged asbestos roofs are less likely to cause long-term health problems to the residents.

No #3: Asking Help from Experts and Other People

Consult with experts and people who are sharing the situation. You might also want to consider whether or not you have the materials to cover asbestos with. For instance, many hardware stores are equipped with insulation paints that can help curtail the effects of asbestos. There are a variety of sealants that can also be used to take care of the problem. If you can assess that your asbestos related problem is solvable by using such products then it is probably a good idea to apply them on the affected areas and get rid of the effects.

Recommended reading: Asbestos Guidance (from Croydon)

No #4: Applying the DIY Principle in Asbestos

In case you take on the task of removing asbestos yourself, you need to keep in mind a few things that are necessary for safe asbestos removal.

  • First, it is advised that renovators should not use heavy power tools when it comes to removing asbestos.
  • Secondly, because asbestos fibres are extremely injurious towards human health, renovators or home owners should avoid disposing off removed asbestos material in the vicinity of any neighborhood.
  • It is always important to do this removal work in places of high ventilation and air because compressed air is a boosting agent for asbestos.
  • Most importantly, all affected areas that consist asbestos should be kept wet until they are disposed off properly.

The idea is to prevent your lungs from inhaling the fumes that are released from asbestos materials whether they are in the form of cement, insulation, etc.

No #5: Safe Asbestos Disposal

Extreme caution is advised when it comes to asbestos removal, because only a few sites in your area would ideally be approved by the local council for asbestos disposal. Whenever renovations are completed, you should get in touch with your local municipality and figure out where you could dispose this harmful material.

Asbestos removal companies are usually efficient when it comes to the proper disposal of asbestos so you might want to opt for a consultation. Exposed material should be double wrapped in a plastic covering and tightly tied down before it is dumped onto the approved site.

Considering the aspects we mentioned above, it is all up to you whether or not to go for a professional external help or engage in doing it yourself. However, keep in mind that asbestos is dangerous for the overall health of your family members and it is best to remove it from roofs or other materials and replace it with modern alternatives, independent of your location (US, Australia, Europe, Asia etc.).

Author: Roxana Nasoi (GooglePlus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+RoxanaNasoi/ )

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