Asbestos, What It Is and How To Test It


Asbestos is a fire resistant material that was used in the building trade in order to supply dire-safe insulation that was cost efficient. In 1999 products manufactured with asbestos where banned because inhaling asbestos fibers causes cancer and is the cause of 2,500 deaths every year.

 Products that contain asbestos and where asbestos testing should take place is in floor tiles, textiles, and composites, textured coatings, cement products with asbestos which may be found in garages, sheds, roofs and walls, partitions and drain pipes, sprayed columns on walls, beams or columns as well as ceilings, loose asbestos in floor cavity and ceilings, guttering water cisterns and pipes etc. It is not likely that buildings built after the year 2000 will have asbestos it is smart to remain vigilant about the possibility of asbestos.

 In order to test for asbestos it is important to never break off a piece in order to send it for sampling. In order to send a piece off for sampling it has to break off naturally and there can be no risk of exposure to the dust or spreading of the debris. Once sure that there is not a risk of dust exposure or spreading of the debris than testing for asbestos can progress. First the samples must be dampened, next the sample gets placed in a self-sealing polythene bag than put into a second self-sealing bag before labeling it and arranging for the sample to be analysed by a UKAS accredited asbestos-testing laboratory. Before removing any asbestos it's important to seek advice and follow the basic rules when doing asbestos cement removal work.

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