While looking for a house, our first concern is buying a home safe for our family. Health issues caused by asbestos can take many years to show. You may have numerous questions regarding asbestos. Yes, there can be the presence of asbestos in a home without your knowledge!
Presence of asbestos in the home
Certain places in your home can have asbestos and you may not know. Asbestos can be present everywhere in a home because it is employed to create over 3000 building materials. Often lab tests fail to recognize the presence of asbestos in material.
Transite asbestos gas vents
If you remember, earlier, transite asbestos was a popular material in making various products like furnaces, boilers, and heaters. But the vents used to flake apart and collapse themselves. Hence, they are no longer used.
They used to get blocked when the flues got flaked from the inside. These blocks were so strong that they stopped any gas from escaping. And harmful gases flow back from appliances to the home.
If any appliance is back-drafting, there will be rusting stains, especially in a water heater. While buying a new house, be sure there is no presence of asbestos. And even if you have transit asbestos gas vents, get them inspected.
Presence of asbestos in the ductwork
When your sub-slab ductwork is called transite, it means there is asbestos. Now, most of the ductwork gets manufactured from PVC. But earlier in the 1960s, it was made of asbestos.
The problem with transite ductwork is asbestos and the fact that the edge of this ductwork is rough and can release enough particles of asbestos in the air if disturbed. In short, this ductwork is brittle.
It means the ductwork shouldn’t get cleaned because doing that will release harmful asbestos into the environment. However, the good part is that particles don’t release fast into the atmosphere.
Yes, it might be surprising to know that your sidings can also have asbestos. The fiber-cement sidings are brittle and get damaged easily. Every house having this siding will have some cracks and damages.
But it isn’t a big deal if you have this installed on your walls. Mainly for two reasons. First, it is outside, and second, it doesn’t get released into the air.
Cloth-like insulation pipes
If an insulation pipe has a cloth-like structure from the outside, and the cardboard looks at the ends, it definitely has the presence of asbestos. You should hire a professional to remove these pipes.
But if your insulation pipes are in good condition, they don’t need any inspection and aren’t a safety hazard.
Boiler and gravity furnace insulators
The insulation on boilers and furnaces can have asbestos. If the insulation is in good condition, there is no immediate danger.
But getting them eliminated from your premises is a good idea.
Vermiculite insulation is the worst, and it contains asbestos. This insulation is so dangerous that you shouldn’t even touch it! Leave this alone if it is in a place like an attic. You can hire experts for this.
Pretty much every house made before 1980 contains the material having asbestos in them. Here is a short list of building materials from the 1980s that can have asbestos in them:
- linoleum floor covering
- spray painted appliances
- Roof covering
- Ceiling texture
- Floor Adhesive
- Ceramic tile
And the list continues.
Report asbestos immediately
While buying a new house, you don’t have to worry about asbestos, but a home built before 1980 can have asbestos.
If asbestos-containing elements are in good shape, then there is no serious issue. And asbestos is not a danger unless someone breathes in asbestos fibers. But vermiculite insulation is an exception here because it spreads the asbestos particle in the air. You should remove it as soon as possible.
If you live in an old house, you consider an asbestos inspection.