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What Not To Do When You Discover Asbestos

April 23, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 364

Asbestos is a building material used for decades in the building of homes and also for thousands of years by humans. Of course, it's not used any more as its been linked with a number of health issues.

Certain forms of cancer can be created if asbestos is inhaled in large amounts over long periods of time. These illnesses often don't appear for 20 to 30 years as they take time to develop.

This doesn't mean it's not uncommon in certain buildings, still. So, what should you not do if you find asbestos in your home?

Don't Panic

Most asbestos is perfectly fine to live with once it's not damaged or disturbed. Asbestos is often used in concrete to make it stronger. However, this means it is often stuck inside the material and the spores don't escape. Of course, this means it is of no threat whatsoever to you as the spores can't harm you. If you have asbestos in your roof, it is often perfectly okay to leave it and carry on as if it's not there. In fact, removing the material is often known to be more dangerous than just leaving it untouched.


Never, ever drill, saw, or sand asbestos. Whether you are engaging in repairs, or are looking to add something to the ceiling. Don't disturb asbestos in this manner. Asbestos spores are tiny and so if you drill them you'll end up with initial dust, but also invisible asbestos spores lying around for prolonged periods of time. These are extremely hard to get rid of an also very dangerous and can last in your home for long periods of time, meaning you'll end up being subjected to them for prolonged periods of time and therefore increase the chances of illness.

Leave Repairs

Don't leave asbestos repairs for any period of time. If you can repair and make safe damaged asbestos do so. Make sure to disturb the asbestos as little as possible during the process. Sealing is a great way to ensure asbestos is taken care of, though do make sure it is a long term seal and that the asbestos won't be disturbed again.

Remove it if it's Okay

Asbestos should never be removed unless it has to be. As we've mentioned before, most asbestos is perfectly okay when it's undisturbed. Only remove asbestos when repair is not possible and the material is broken up and has the potential to cause damage to you and your surroundings. Ensure that you use the services of a professional asbestos removal company though, as removal of this type of material is highly specialised and should never be undertaken by a layperson.

Do it Alone

Never just decide that you are going to remove asbestos on a whim. Asbestos is an extremely toxic material and it can provide long term repercussions to those who end up living, or working under it. Seek professional advice if you wish to remove, or are even thinking of, removing asbestos. Professional people will be able to advise you on the best ways and your options to remove the material from the area in a safe and secure manner.

You will no doubt be advised to get an asbestos survey first to check if in fact, the material you have discovered is asbestos after all.

Olivia Reynolds has written many articles about building, construction and home improvement having worked in the industry for many years. She is currently working with Top Tradespeople, the tradesmen site where homeowners can find a tradesman, including surveyors for asbestos surveys

Source: EzineArticles
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