Back in the day, asbestos was the blue-eyed boy of the construction industry. It has many qualities that engineers liked. It is versatile, strong, chemically inert and affordable. Its resistance to heat and fire also boosted its popularity to the extent that it was widely used in construction between 1940 and 1980.
It was only when people became aware of the health hazards caused by asbestos that it lost popularity. Some of the dangers of inhaling asbestos fibres include cancer of the lungs, ovaries, testes and larynx, as well as other respiratory problems. Mesothelioma is the worst disease caused by asbestos, and it has no known cure.
Asbestos poses little or no risk if undisturbed because it only becomes lethal when airborne. Not all exposure leads to these conditions, but it raises the risk significantly. This is why In 2003, Australia banned all imports, use and manufacture of asbestos. Below are three facts you should know about asbestos roofing.
1. It is made of Bonded Asbestos
Asbestos is broadly classified into bonded and friable categories. Friable asbestos can easily disintegrate into powder, so it is high risk. Bonded asbestos or non-friable asbestos is used with bonding materials such as cement to create solid objects that do not disintegrate easily. However, asbestos roofs are also considered high risk because they are brittle. So when they need cleaning or repair, asbestos roofs need expert intervention. Rather than clean or repair such roofs, it is safer to remove them and replace with other roofing options.
2. It makes property more difficult to sell
With the widespread awareness about the risks of coming into contact with asbestos, property buyers tend to avoid property with asbestos. Prospective buyers foresee the costly process of asbestos removal that will come at some point and opt to buy other properties.
3. Early replacement is recommended
If asbestos roof replacement is done early, it reduces possible risks. When the roof starts disintegrating, chances of fibres floating in the air increase. Another perk of replacing asbestos roofs early is that insurance premiums may go down. Some insurance companies flat out refuse to insure homes with asbestos.
Because of the obvious risks associated with asbestos, the government has put policies in place to control removal and disposal of asbestos. Asbestos removal cannot be a do-it-yourself project. Only licensed asbestos removal experts are allowed by law remove asbestos from your home. When removing asbestos, several special tools are used to prevent the spread of airborne asbestos fibres. The technicians also implement safety measures and wear protective gear for their protection.