Safe Environments offers a range of asbestos services including asbestos identification, asbestos testing, asbestos inspections and asbestos management for homes.
Asbestos ceilings are common in homes constructed between the 1950s and the 1980s. Asbestos ceilings were used because of their fireproofing and heat resistant properties.
In houses, asbestos ceilings are most commonly found in bathrooms, laundries and garages as these are rooms where a fire may start unattended. Verandah ceilings and asbestos eaves were also used to reduce the risk of fire spreading to adjoining properties.
There are several types of common asbestos ceilings including:
- Asbestos Cement Sheet
- Asbestos Insulating Board (AIB)
- Asbestos Ceiling Tiles
- Sprayed insulation (vermiculite or popcorn asbestos ceiling)
Homeowners can have their ceilings tested if they suspect that they may have an asbestos ceiling; however it is strongly recommended that a NATA accredited asbestos inspector collect a sample particularly if the ceiling is friable.
When sampling the ceiling asbestos fibres will fall within the homeowner’s breathing zone posing a risk.
Correct sampling techniques for asbestos ceilings include wetting the surface down, using drop sheets as well as wearing protective respiratory equipment and disposable overalls.
The risk of asbestos related health issues will depend on whether the asbestos ceiling comprises bonded or friable asbestos, the condition of the material and the use and occupancy of the area.
Bonded asbestos ceilings made of cement sheet and corrugated asbestos are generally quite stable when they are in good condition and are only cause for concern during renovations or major refurbishment.
However, friable asbestos ceilings such as popcorn asbestos ceilings are potentially quite hazardous due to fibres that may be released from small amounts of disturbance.
Other issues can arise with asbestos ceiling tiles in commercial buildings where contractors may be moving the asbestos panels to gain access to the ceiling. The edges of the panels can rub on the frames that hold them in place creating dust.
Special precautions are required when accessing asbestos ceiling tiles and panels.
The company offers asbestos services in NSW, Sydney, ACT and Canberra.