There are three main types of asbestos that were used in production and still exist in materials today. The most widespread and commonly used is chrysotile also known as white asbestos which belongs to the serpentine groups. The other two main types used belong to the amphibole group and are known as amosite and crocidolite, or white asbestos and blue asbestos, respectively.
There are three other types of asbestos that have similar properties to amosite and crocidolite as they also belong to the amphibole group. They are known as actinolite, anthophyllite and tremolite and are found only in a small number materials and products in Australia.
Asbestos materials and products, regardless of what type they are made of, can be classed as either being friable or non-friable. The vast majority of asbestos materials and products are non-friable. This means that they are tightly bound in a matrix of either cement, vinyl or another material. If these products are broken and the edges are exposed there is a low risk to people breathing in dangerous amounts of fibres as the bulk of the fibres will remain bound.
Friable products are those which can be easily crushed or pulverised under hand pressure to release fibres. Another example of friability is if the product is in such a state that a weak wind can cause fibres to become airborne from the matrix. Products and materials that are considered friable in their normal state include asbestos ropes, clothing and blankets.
What is Asbestos?
Naturally occurring in the environment, asbestos is the name of a group of fibrous silicate minerals. Used mostly between the 1940’s and 1980’s mainly because of its excellent insulating, fire resistance and durability properties, asbestos can also be found in automotive products such as clutches, gaskets and brakes.
Despite the media attention given to asbestos and asbestos related illnesses, asbestos only poses a risk to your health if it is broken, in a poor or deteriorated condition or during activities that produce dust containing asbestos fibres. THAT IS WHY YOU SHOULD CONSULT AN ASBESTOS REMOVAL PROFESSIONAL BEFORE DEMOLITION
Where can Asbestos be found?
ASBESTOS CEMENT SHEETING
There are two different types of asbestos, firmly bound and loosely bound. Each has been used differently in the building industry over the years.
Firmly-Bound Asbestos (non-friable asbestos):
This type of asbestos mostly consists of fibre-cement products, where the asbestos fibres are embedded in a hardened cement matrix. Instead of asbestos, cellulose fibres are used in the same fibre-cement products.
Firmly-bound asbestos sheeting can be found around the home in:
- Cement sheeting, either flat or corruaged (also known as ‘fibro’ or ‘AC Sheeting’)
- Flue and water pipes
- Roof shingles
- Flexible building boards
- Imitation brick cladding
Other products that may also contain this type of asbestos includes:
- Plaster patching compounds
- Textured pain
- Vinyl floor tiles
- Backing of linoleum floor coverings
Asbestos can be difficult to detect, however houses built after 1986 are very unlikely to contain any asbestos type materials.
IF UNSURE, YOU SHOULD CONSULT A PROFESSIONAL FOR ADVICE.
WHILE PROFESSIONALS CANNOT DETECT AND CONFIRM ASBESTOS BY SIGHT ALONE, THEY CAN ASSESS PROBABILITY OF ASBESTOS USE.
Loosely-Bound Asbestos (friable asbestos)
This type of asbestos may be found some forms of insulation within domestic heaters, stoves and ceiling insulation. Note that this type of asbestos is extremely rare in residential settings, mostly used in commercial buildings and will be considerably aged.
Glass fibres have replaced asbestos fibres in the insulation products used today.
Zenmar Asbestos Removal is a highly professional and reputable commercial and domestic asbestos removal company with more than 20 years experience. We specialise in all non-friable asbestos. We work under the most stringent safety guidelines and all material is correctly sealed and disposed of after every job. We remove and dispose of asbestos from a variety of locations; homes, schools, garages and factories.
We have safely Removed Asbestos for more than 20 years. We are a trusted and reliable Asbestos Removal Company in Melbourne.