4 Things That Can Indicate Asbestos in Your Home
Asbestos – the word alone conjures negative associations that range from property damage to chronic sickness, and with good reason.
The harmful mineral was used for decades as a source of insulation for properties all over the globe, without any knowledge of how deadly prolonged inhalation can be for the human body. Fatal diseases such as lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis are often the result of anyone who comes into frequent, prolonged contact with asbestos fibres.
In the 21st century, it is illegal to use asbestos for any means, but many homes and warehouses still contain asbestos from construction of years past. To become informed, read about the 4 things that can indicate asbestos in your home.
Small White Fibres
Asbestos can be found all throughout a home. This can include floor tiles, water tanks, pipe insulation, roofs and gutters, just to name a small sample of places. When looking in one of these many places throughout your property, you should look for unusual white fibres around the edges of the material in question. Asbestos fibres clump together and tend to look furry and fluffy in appearance.
Always exercise extreme caution when looking for asbestos. The material is least dangerous when it is left undisturbed, so you should never go to great lengths to try and uncover it.
40 x 6 mm wooden battens were commonly used in the past to cover the joints used on external corners, internal corners and flat wall pieces. These strips of joinery are often concealing harmful fibres and have traditionally signalled that the material initially used was asbestos. Please be aware that plastic joiners were also used in the early 1980’s when asbestos was still used in building and construction. If you have these joiners in your home, contact a professional to organise an examination and removal.
Look for Blunt Nails
Asbestos sheeting becomes dangerous whenever it is shattered and fractured, causing irreversible respiratory damage to anyone who comes into contact with the material. However, instead of using an alternative material, contractors would use special nails to fix asbestos to the wall more effectively. These nails are characterised by their blunt, flat end. Instead of being hammered into the sheeting they would be punched in using special instruments, and hence would not have the usual point like other nails. Finding these blunt nails is a potential sign that your property may have been built using asbestos.
Look for Markings that Indicate Asbestos
Asbestos products that were manufactured in the 70’s and 80’s will often have markings that will identify the material as asbestos. The label will be marked with a message that simply reads “Contains asbestos”.
Finding potential asbestos in your home is a serious matter. If you are concerned about potential asbestos in your property, contact the professionals at Ideal Roofing for guidance, advice and testing. We are fully certified, trained and licensed asbestos contractors.