What Is Asbestos
Asbestos is a natural occurring fibrous material that was a popular building material due to its characteristics. It was heavily used because it is an insulator, fire-retardant, has tensile strength and is resistant to chemical erosion.
Asbestos has also been widely used in transportation and electrical appliances, frequently mixed with, and encased in, other materials. In most instances, undisturbed asbestos-containing materials that are in good condition do not present a significant exposure risk. These materials can often be safely managed in place.
Some of the common sources of asbestos exposure, are the construction industry (particularly building demolition and renovation activities), the manufacture of asbestos products (such as textiles, friction products, insulation, and other building materials), and during automotive brake and clutch repair work, Deteriorating, damaged, or disturbed asbestos-containing products such as insulation, fireproofing, acoustical materials, and floor tiles, those living near these industries.
There are two major groups of asbestos:
Serpentine: Serpentine fibres are long, flexible and curved. These fibres can be woven together. The main type of serpentine asbestos is chrysotile (white asbestos), which is the main type of asbestos used in manufacturing.
Amphiobole: Amphibole fibres are straight and stiff. These fibres are generally brittle and rod- or needle-shaped, which limits their commercial usefulness. There are 5 sub-types of amphiobole asbestos, including:
- Crocidolite (blue asbestos)
- Amosite (brown asbestos)
Where can you find Asbestos?
Asbestos can be location all over your home or property. The tricky thing with asbestos is that it is not visible to the human eye. Asbestos fibres are located within a certain material and the only way to know 100% if the material contains asbestos is to have it tested. Howver, that being said, there are certain materials within a property (if the property was built within the 1930's to the 1980's) that are usually guaranteed to have asbestos, ie) register vents, pipe wrap, plaster and floor tiles.
Asbestos is commonly found in:
- Plaster or Drywall
- Pipe Wrap and Duct Wrap
- Register Vents (or boots)
- Ceiling Tiles and Floor Tiles
- Insulation (Vermiculite)
Asbestos Pipe Wrap Asbestos Vermiculite Insulation Asbestos Duct Wrap