DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > General Home Improvement Discussion > Abestos

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Old 05-24-2010, 02:13 PM  
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Default Abestos

I recently moved into a rental which belongs to my parents and found out that there is abestos on the outside and inside of this three-storey 1919 house. The outside plates (tiles) cover all around the third floor and all around the bottom floor. It is also in the bathroom floor tiles but that is covered by vinyl flooring and is not exposed. The insulation and wiring for only the hot water tank had been replaced and the abestos had been properly taken out.

However, because this house is so old there is no record as to what other abestos lies within this house. It will be a lengthy expensive procedure to remove the abestos which I cannot afford right now.

If the abestos is not disturbed I heard that this will not be a major health concern. How true is this? Is there any other abestos that may be within this old house that I should be aware of? Should I worry about the weather elements eroding the abestos tiles outside? It looks unworn for it near 100 year condition. Is there a link you can direct me to with regards to the full info about abestos?

I live in Vancouver, British Columbia and know that a permit is required to remove abestos properly and dispose of safely. Are there other legal issues I should be aware of?

Ths is a great concern and I would not have moved here if I had known about this but it is too late and I would like to recitify this when I can financially afford to do so. I may have to see if there is any govenment grant or funding for renos because this is such a dangerous material.

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Old 05-24-2010, 02:49 PM  
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some of the known sources of asbestos are siding, flooring, wash tubs & pipe insulation.
In some areas, you the homeowner may remove this and dispose of it in the trash but, a licensed asbestos removal company must adhere to higher standards.
Your are correct in that as long as it is not disturbed, it does not pose any health hazards. The weathering of outside asbestos should not be concern as it is outside and not in a confined space where you will be breathing it.

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Old 05-24-2010, 09:31 PM  
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Just do a Google search for Asbestos regulations British Columbia and there is a lot of information out there. Like stated already your best bet is to cover it for now, the worst thing you can do is disturb it and get the fibers flying around. You might be able to get a contractor to come out and verify what is and isn't asbestos and give you an idea of cost for removal and/or encapsulation. Your first step is to identify what is asbestos. Good luck and be safe with the Asbestos but don't be too worried.
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:00 PM  
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Have you read the Asbestos wiki page? Asbestos - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 05-28-2010, 09:52 PM  
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Thanks to everyone for your input. I took a quick read on Wiki and will have to go back because it's quite lengthy. The 9/11 disaster was an interesting tidbit.

Having a company to give an assessment is beyond what I can pay now. However, I understand I can send a lab a small sample of whatever I suspect may have abestos. It would take a few weeks but they can tell me with detail how much, if any, abestos is in the sample.

I can't believe how much of this stuff is EVERYWHERE!
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Old 05-29-2010, 12:02 AM  
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Originally Posted by maxmillan View Post
I can't believe how much of this stuff is EVERYWHERE!
You don't know the half of it.

Asbestos is one of the most abundant minerals in the Earth's crust. As a result, there are large surface outcroppings of asbestos throughout the world. In the United States, just about all of the surface rock in California contains asbestos. There are large areas of West Virginia that also have asbestos outcroppings at the surface.

Did you know that:

1. The airborne asbestos fiber count in the state parks around San Fransisco were measured to be fifty (50) times higher than the OSHA would allow in a workplace without special protective breathing gear being provided to the workers? It's true. The gravel roads in these parks were made with an asbestos bearing rock called "Serpentine". When cars drove over those gravel roads, the rocks would rub together creating airborne dust that contained asbestos fibers. As a result of that finding, California has enacted laws limiting the amount of serpentine rock that can be used in the gravel used to make gravel roads. That content has been decreased from 100% down to just 0.02 percent because of the asbestos fiber content in the dust kicked up by cars driving on these roads.

2. There is asbestos in the rocks around the Great Lakes. This rock erodes to form dust, and that dust is carried into the rivers feeding the Great Lakes by the rain. As a result, despite being treated, a glass of tap water in Duluth contains about 7000 asbestos fibers. Luckily, no one has found any detrimental health effects from swallowing asbestos fibers yet.

3. No one uses asbestos anymore, right? Wrong. Did you know that asbestos is still being used for automotive brake pads and shoes? In America, a baby squabble broke out between several branches of the government on who is responsible for overseeing the importation of car parts. No department wanted to handle that job without extra funding, and there was no extra funding to be had. The result is that right now there is no law in the US forbidding the IMPORTATION of asbestos brake linings. So, brake parts imported from China that contain asbestos are still being installed on American cars. When your local brake shop advertizes brake jobs starting at $49, do you think they're installing American-made Borg Warner brake shoes costing $50 a set? No, they're installing brake shoes from China that cost about as much as a ham sandwich.

Really, the bottom line on asbestos is that there's no safe exposure level, but some of us seem to be more susceptible to it than others. It's kinda like cancer that way. My uncle smoked his entire life, and ended up dying of pneumonia at age 98. Someone else can smoke all their life and die of lung cancer at age 42. And, at the end of the day, the ONLY thing they've ever found that seems to be healthy for our hearts is drinking alcohol. Put lung cancer, Mesothelioma, UFO's and crop circles in the same bag. We don't understand any of them well enough to know who will be affected and who won't. So, to cover their butts, the government's response is to tell everyone to avoid the stuff like the plague.

I think they can't see the forest because of all the trees in the way. Asbestos was just as abundant in the Earth's crust over the hundreds of millions of years that we evolved from apes and apes evolved from more primitive mammals before them. I think it's far more likely that over the eons, we land animals have developed some natural resistance to asbestos. But, as with everything else in nature, diversity is the rule. So, just as some of us inherited more body hair and the propensity to be territorial from our ape ancestry, some of us inherited a greater natural resistance to asbestos than others.

Check out:
Mesothelioma | - The Leading Mesothelioma Resource

Last edited by Nestor_Kelebay; 05-29-2010 at 12:54 AM.
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Old 05-30-2010, 01:28 PM  
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Default whew

I've grew up in this abestos-full house for many years as a child and now I'm residing in it again for the last half of my life. I can't live with this heavily on my mind. Nestor, thanks for alleviating my stress.

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