Homeowners beware of the danger of Asbestos

Asbestos isn’t one of the most popular or well-known indoor air pollinates, but it is one of the most dangerous if not properly handled or disposed of. Asbestos can cause lung cancer.  Asbestos has been most commonly associated with the materials used to make the insulation within your home. Asbestos fibers are very strong and contain properties to resist heat, it’s an excellent material used for fire proofing. You can also find asbestos in items like ceiling and floor tiles, decorative sprays, products used to repair your roofing such as shingles, roofing felt and sealants. Asbestos is also used in commercial and industrial friction products such as disc brake pads, drum brake lining, brake blocks and millaboard. Living with asbestos isn’t necessarily considered to be dangerous.  Asbestos becomes problem as it ages, over time it starts to naturally wear and tear, slowly releasing toxic chemicals into the air you are breathing.

In 1970 a laws was passed prohibiting the manufacture of asbestos in any materials. So generally speaking if you are living in a home constructed after 1970, you’re most likely in the clear. But if you live in home made prior to 1970 here are some things you should aware about; many building products made prior 1970 contained asbestos materials. Such as steam pipes, boilers and furnace ducts which are insulated with asbestos. If these areas become damage or need repairing make sure your handyman is aware on the proper procedures for sealing or removing these materials. Floor tiles, tile adhesives, cement sheet, and millboard all have asbestos sealants and adhesives, be aware of this before sanding or scraping, drilling or cutting in to these materials. Door gaskets in furnace and wood stoves that have worn or damaged seals can also release asbestos fibers. Decorative paints and materials like textured paints and soundproofing materials can also release toxic materials if they are loose, crumbly, or water damaged.

Most of us don’t have to worry about asbestos, but if you’re a recent homeowner and looking to remodel be aware and cautious. Asbestos materials are pretty much everywhere in older homes. So remember if you do come in contact with asbestos materials and there in good condition; DO NOTHING leave it alone. Asbestos only becomes a problem when repairing or removing it. If you do need repairs or the removal of asbestos, don’t do it alone. Find a professional who can assist you. Be an active homeowner and look around, your house is like a car it needs proper maintenance and tune-up once in a while.