Whether you are about to renovate your bathroom or buy an older property that needs some restoration, make sure your first step is to do your research. This should include testing to see if there are any materials containing asbestos. Identifying all known materials about to be disturbed allows for a plan to be made, so if there is asbestos, the plan can include having removal of the materials or have the material worked around in a safe manner.
The most reliable method of making sure you know that a material is negative for asbestos contamination is to have it tested. Looking at any type of material with the naked eye can never truly rule out asbestos contamination. We always suggest having a professional complete the testing.
Professionals such as the team at MPA Asbestos Services – Asbestos Solutions, look and test materials containing asbestos every day. The team can draw from this knowledge when taking the sample for testing and can also advice on the condition of the material in question. There may be instances where renovations can be carried out around the asbestos material or if the material is in good condition, there is no need to have it removed at all.
An example of an area in many houses in Adelaide that often contains asbestos includes the eaves around the house. We see many homeowners who replace their asbestos roof and feel that they must also replace their eaves. If the eaves are in good condition and will not be disturbed, then there is no need to replace them. Calling professionals to have the eaves tested and checked, saved homeowners thousands of dollars in this instance.
There has been many a time when we have been called out to a family’s home after a disaster bathroom renovation, where a tiler has looked at the bathroom wall linings and believed that they didn’t contain asbestos. He has then continued with the bathroom renovation, with tiles and wall linings removed from the wall, put in a wheelbarrow and wheeled throughout the house to the skip bin at the front of the house. Only later to have another tradesman suggest that the area be tested for asbestos and to the homeowner’s horror have the wall linings test positive to asbestos. Not only did the homeowners or tradesman expose themselves to the potentially deadly asbestos, it was also carried throughout the house and then dumped into the bin, normally filled with dust and debris and contaminating the area around the bin and also the contents of the skip bin.
The clean up of this situation is enormous and incredibly expensive. In this case, a simple call to our team at MPA Asbestos Services – Asbestos Solutions, would have identified the wall lining material as asbestos. The cost for professional removal would have been far outweighed by the cost of the house contamination clean up and possible future health concerns.
When asbestos testing is completed by professionals, the sample is tested under a microscope to see if there is any presence of asbestos fibres in comparison to a paper or wood fibre. This is why we always suggest having your material tested for asbestos as it is the safest and most reliable method.