Asbestos: An Overview
If you watch a lot of home renovation shows, or maybe you've had some renovations in your own home, you may have heard about asbestos. But oftentimes, asbestos isn't very well explained in what it is, where you can find it, and how it affects your health.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral known for its fibrous looking crystals. However, natural does not equate to healthy.
The appeal in using asbestos in building materials stemmed from the mineral's sturdiness. Resistance to heat, corrosion and electricity were all pluses in using asbestos. Then, through scientific and medical studies, it came into mainstream knowledge how terrible asbestos is for a person's health. Asbestos soon became known for causing several types of lung and colon cancer, asbestosis, and general respiratory health problems.
The EPA widely banned most asbestos containing products by 1989, but it's thought that stockpiles of these products were used throughout the 1990's. Thus, the likelihood asbestos was used in structures increases the older that structure is. But where in these buildings and homes can asbestos be found?
Well, lots of places! Starting from the roof: the roof felt and shingles, gutters, loose insulation, and even soffit boards. Within the home incandescent lighting, artificial fireplace logs, the backings of recessed lighting, and even outlets and switches. Pipe insulation, heat reflectors, boiler or furnace insulation, flooring, and more are also included in this.
Your home may have asbestos, so it’s important to use proper safety equipment and precautions to protect yourself and your family when having any renovations, remodeling, or maintenance done on your home.