The Australian Asbestos Network estimates that "more than one million Australian homes were built using asbestos sheeting"—and sheets aren't the only way asbestos sneaks into domestic properties. The presence of asbestos in any of its forms is a real concern when carrying out repairs, restorations and renovations on your home, particularly as most asbestos is more dangerous once disturbed. The important thing to know is that you must never attempt to deal with asbestos on your own: asbestos disposal requires expert assistance, and it's vital that you call in an asbestos waste removal firm to get the job done properly.
Where might you find asbestos in your home?
Before the use of asbestos was banned in Australia, it was commonly employed for its durable, insulating and fire-resistant properties. As a result, there are many corners of your domestic property where it may be lurking. Common culprits include (but are not limited to):
- Sheet roofs, particularly on sheds and outbuildings
- Gutters, drainpipes and the caps of roof ridges
- Garden fences, especially those that appear to be made of concrete
- Lining and insulation under roof eaves and in loft spaces
- Wall and ceiling panels, and some kinds of textured paint
- Lining behind or underneath tiles, lino or electrical switches
- Insulation in cavity walls, especially in areas with a cooler climate
This prevalence makes it highly likely that you'll encounter asbestos during a home renovation, particularly if you're planning on making structural changes to the shape and layout of your home or its outbuildings. If you're not sure when your home was built or where you might find these materials, consider having an asbestos survey carried out prior to commencing work—many asbestos removal firms will also offer this service.
How do asbestos removal companies handle the issue?
There are strict regulations governing the removal and disposal of asbestos-containing products and materials. Your asbestos removal firm will arrive with all the protective gear necessary to inspect, remove and wrap the asbestos, before taking it to specialised disposal sites that are able to dismantle and handle it safely. You'll need to have a clear idea of where the asbestos is before you book them, though many have appraisal services that can help you with this stage.
This isn't something you can handle without expert assistance—so if you suspect your renovations might be disturbed by an asbestos discovery, get in touch with a local company today.
Contact a professional for more information about asbestos waste disposal.