Asbestos in Your Home: A Silent Threat

 

Derived from the Greek language, Asbestos was used extensively for construction purposes during the 19th century. It is an extremely effective and cheap fire-retardant material. Home Asbestos played a vital role in the construction of houses before the year 1980. However, even today the substance has been proving hazardous to the masses in the form of exposure from ceiling tiles, flooring, and piping in early built homes. Exposure to Asbestos may trigger the onset of dangerous diseases.

In this article, we shed light on the identification, threats and removal process of Asbestos.

Is Asbestos Dangerous?

Home Asbestos Dangerous

During the construction process, the products that require Asbestos eventually become hazardous to your health. This is because the composition of Asbestos is done with multiple components including a mineral made of very thin fibers.

To start with, it is good for you to learn that Asbestos can be dangerous as it can have a negative impact on your health. While breathing, if any individual inhales asbestos, then it can result in some major illness. However, it is possible that a patient may not be able to identify the same for many years. It can damage the lungs if not cured on time.

Asbestos is just like lead paint, this means that till the time your materials are kept under good condition, asbestos is also harmless. Also, in case you find any element of undamaged home asbestos, then the best thing that you can do is simply leave it as it is.

Whereas, in case you find an element of damaged asbestos at your house, then you should know that they tend to release microscopic bacteria into the atmosphere, which affects your health. Therefore, it is recommended for you to keep a close check on the items that you have doubts about containing the same. But the question is how would you find it? The simplest way to find the same is to check for tears, water damage, cracks and abrasions. As soon as you identify one, it is suggested for you to not touch the object and immediately contact an expert that can help you with asbestos removal.

Discovering Home Asbestos in Your House

Discovering

The most important question is how do you identify Asbestos. It is pretty tricky to identify one, this is because asbestos does not have any smell or taste to itself. Asbestos colour and its texture can be changed depending on the material that you are mixing it with. Asbestos is found in various kinds of items such as construction material, household appliances etc. It is impossible for you to identify the same at first glance.

If you are in doubt, then it is best for you to have a testing proceeded by asbestos removal by experts.

Products that Contain Home Asbestos in Your Home

Products that Contain Asbestos in Your Home

If the construction of your house took place in the period between 1920 to 1989, then there are probable chances that asbestos might be contained in the paint, pipe, insulation, plaster, flooring, panels, caulking and drywall of your house.

Home asbestos is also found in various appliances of your home like ovens, stoves, heaters, fridges, toasters, dishwashers, etc. You find asbestos in this appliance as it must have been used as an insulate heating feature in your electrical components.  They are also found in your old cars like the clutches, hood liners, brakes, and gaskets.

Asbestos is commonly found in products that consist of tales such as toys, crayons and even baby powders and even in your cosmetics. Additionally, the soil of your indoor plants also contains elements of asbestos.

Asbestos Removal at Your House

Asbestos Removal

Asbestos removal is a job that is not advised for an individual to do individually.  As if the surface is disturbed, then it is very easy for you to inhale the microscopic bacteria that is presented in the air. Inhaling the same has a lot of disadvantages to it and may lead to having some major health issues.

Therefore, it is always recommended for you to go on with the process of asbestos removal only by a certified expert. There are probable chances that you might  put yourself at risk while trying to remove the asbestos single handedly. So, in this situation, it is not recommended for you to think about the cost-cutting and rather should opt for an expert.

When Can Asbestos Exposure Occur in Home?

Home Asbestos Exposure Occur

Asbestos exposure can occur in one’s home in the following scenarios.

  1.       When there is a disturbance due to any renovation project at your house.
  2.       Due to maintenance at your home.
  3.       When any natural disaster or fire emergency happens in your home.
  4.       Occurrence of flood or any kind of water damage.
  5.       When the construction of the house is old.
  6.       Breakdowns in your house.

Common Sources for Occurrence of Asbestos at Home

Occurrence of Asbestos at Home

The following are the common sources of occurrence of home asbestos.

  1.  Walls of the house
  2. Roof of the house
  3. Attics of the house
  4. Floors of the house
  5. Crawls spaces in the house
  6. Ceilings of the house

Measures to Handle Asbestos at Home

Measures to Handle

Following is the list of some measures that can be taken by individuals to handle asbestos in their homes.

  1. Try and avoid taking materials that can contain asbestos.
  2. Never destroy the materials or items that contain asbestos.
  3. Always do a thorough check before purchasing a home. Talk to the inspector as well as the realtor of the house about asbestos.
  4. Hire a team of experts that have full knowledge about the process of testing and asbestos removal.
  5. Take a round of home inspections before final demolition in order to ensure that the asbestos materials have been taken care of properly.

Things to Avoid while Handling Asbestos at Home

Avoidable things

Following are the list of measures that are not supposed for an individual to take for handling asbestos at home

  1. Never throw the materials containing asbestos in your normal household bin.
  2. Never start using materials containing asbestos immediately. Until and unless they have speculated and re-checked again.
  3. Never take the chance of self-collecting the particles of the sample for testing.
  4. Never use a broom or a vacuum to remove the damaged asbestos items.
  5. Never drill, saw, sand, scrape or disturb the materials containing asbestos.

Conclusion

It is true that asbestos can be very dangerous for you and your health. But it does not mean it can’t be cured. Therefore, it is important for you to notice the items and materials around you that might contain asbestos. In case you find any, it is important for you to take the correct measures such as avoid using the materials that contain asbestos, keep a close eye on the materials consisting of asbestos and finally hire a team of professionals.Along with that, there are some measures that you are not required to take at your own level as it can be dangerous and can cause damage to your health.

 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is asbestos?

Asbestos is defined as the group of fibrous minerals that are usually used to strengthen or fireproof any materials.

How to remove asbestos from your home?

The best way to remove asbestos from your home is by hiring an expert who is trained and knows exactly how to remove and test the samples.

What are the different types of products that contain asbestos?

The products that contain asbestos are your electronic appliances: paint, pipe, insulation, plaster, flooring, panels, caulking and drywall of your house. They are also found in your old cars like the clutches, hood liners, brakes, and gaskets.

What are the measures of handling asbestos at home?

The measures that one takes to handle asbestos at home are double-checking the products before purchasing, hiring a team of professionals, and trying to avoid using materials that contain asbestos.

What are the common sources where asbestos occurs?

The common sources where asbestos can occur are the walls, roof, attics, floors and ceiling of your house.