You may be considering home renovations if you have recently moved into an older property. However, you should also be aware that there could be the risk of severe health implications if the construction of your residence utilised asbestos. The asbestos may not be harmful while the property is intact, but disturbing the various aspects of the structure could be dangerous to you and your loved ones. So are you at risk of asbestos exposure during home renovations?
Why would your structure have asbestos?
In this day and age, asbestos is a banned substance when it comes to construction. Nevertheless, decades ago, it was commonly used since it is highly resistant to heat. One of the standard building supplies that contained asbestos was fibro cottage, which was cement sheeting that had high amounts of asbestos to make it resistant to bush fires. As a result, a significant number of older houses would be at risk of harbouring asbestos fibres.
What parts of your home should you be wary of?
Home renovations can be quite extensive, particularly if you are looking to change the layout and update the appearance of various rooms. Thus, it is advisable to know which areas of your home would be at high risk and avoid conducting any DIY renovations until an asbestos abatement provider has performed a thorough site analysis. Other than cement sheeting, other areas that you may find asbestos include:
- Gutters and downspouts
- Roofing tiles
- Roof eaves
- Heater and piping insulation
- Backing on your electric metre board
- Chimney insulation
- Under floor tiles
- In ceiling cavities
How can you become exposed to asbestos?
A mistake to avoid is assuming you can carry out your own inspections before seeking out abatement services. When you begin to tinker with items that could contain asbestos, the material's fine fibres are released into the air. Since the fibres are microscopic, you most likely will inhale them, and this can cause serious harm to your health. Moreover, by disturbing the asbestos fibres, it means they will now be continuously released into the atmosphere of your home, making your entire residence a hazard to all inhabitants.
Which precautions should you take?
Overall, if you suspect the presence of asbestos and need to carry out renovations, it would be best to vacate the premises. Asbestos removal can then be performed by the professionals who have the right protective gear and equipment to eliminate this toxic substance. Your abatement professionals will also ensure the asbestos does not contaminate the surrounding environment.