We can all take our health for granted. Most of us will only go to the doctors if we are feeling unwell. How often do we ever think go to the Doctors for a health check? Sometimes unfortunately there can be problems lying under the surface.
The same could be said of your property.
Asbestos the hidden danger
Asbestos is a natural occurring fibrous material which was common in buildings built before 2000.
It has excellent fire protection and insulation properties and also protects against corrosion. Is is often mixed in with other building materials such as tiles, pipe insulation, boilers and sprayed coatings. Therefore it is difficult to know for the untrained wether you are in contact with it or not.
All commercial properties should have had a management survey carried out and the areas where asbestos is located clearly marked on floor plans. The purpose of the survey is not ensure that if any asbestos is detected it is not damaged, and if left undisturbed will not be dangerous.
Asbestos in your home
When it comes to your home asbestos could be lurking as a lot of homes built before 2000 may contain a lot of the original building materials from when it was constructed and could include:
- Until the mid-1980s, Artex was a very popular coating was made with white asbestos to strengthen it. Therefore old Artex manufactured by Artex Ltd. will contain asbestos while Artex coatings applied after 2000 may or may not contain asbestos.
- asbestos cement roof sheeting is also very common. Typical uses were on garages, sheds and workshops.
- sprayed coating - found as fire protection on structural supports (for example, columns and beams) - it is a high hazard asbestos product and can generate very high fibre levels if disturbed
- pipe insulation - asbestos thermal pipe lagging is a high hazard asbestos product
- asbestos insulating board (AIB) ceiling and door panels - AIB is a high hazard asbestos product and can generate high levels of fibres if the board is cut or drilled
- AIB window panel - like other AIB, this is a high hazard asbestos product, and if in good condition should be left undisturbed
- floor tiles - vinyl (PVC) or thermoplastic tiles contain asbestos
When materials that contain asbestos are disturbed or damaged, fibres are released into the air. When these fibres are inhaled they can cause serious diseases. These diseases will not affect you immediately; they often take a long time to develop, but once diagnosed, it is often too late to do anything.
If any building or refurbishment work is to be carried out then this could be potentially dangerous to the person carrying out the work.
Arrange for a Health Check
If you are concerned that your property may contain asbestos we can arrange a survey to give you peace of mind.
For more information on Asbestos follow the links to our other blog posts