Asbestos is one of those words which might worry you, especially if you find out that asbestos might be in your home. However, it’s usually nothing to worry about, as this section explains.
Building materials containing asbestos were used very widely between 1930 to 1980, and particularly from 1960 onward since asbestos fibres are strong and resistant to heat and chemicals. When asbestos becomes damaged it releases fibres into the air which can cause problems if inhaled.
Where could I find asbestos in my home?
Outside the home:
- Roof, garage and shed - in sheets, tiles or roof felt
- Gutters and down pipes
Inside the home:
- Partition walls
- Panels beneath windows
- Cupboards around domestic boilers
- Panels behind electrical equipment, fires or heaters
- Panels on or inside fire doors
- Bath panels, floor tiles and textured coatings (artex)
- Gaskets and rope seals inside gas appliances
- Cold water storage tanks
You can also sometimes find asbestos in toilet cisterns and seats, fireplace panels, fuse carriers, old ironing boards, oven gloves and even toasters.
Am I at risk?
You’re not at risk if products containing asbestos are undisturbed and undamaged. It’s extremely unlikely that the levels of asbestos found in any building owned by the Trust will be harmful.
You need to be aware that DIY activities such as sanding or drilling may disturb products containing asbestos and release fibres into your home. If we’ve advised you that you might have asbestos in your home, or if you are working on any of the areas listed above, please contact us to take advice before carrying out this sort of DIY work.
As a landlord it’s our legal obligation, under the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2006, to register each property and its asbestos content.
We take our responsibilities seriously and we’ll continue to survey our homes and take samples of any material which might contain asbestos fibres, to make sure that our homes are safe.
Depending on the severity of any asbestos material found in properties we will either repair the material, usually by sealing or enclosing it, or we will remove it, especially where it is badly damaged or deteriorated.
Dos and dont’s
Most importantly please don’t panic.
- Do report any damaged or worn asbestos containing materials to us
- Don’t carry out DIY activities that may damage asbestos containing materials
- Don’t sweep, dust or vacuum any debris that might contain asbestos
- Don’t sand, scrap, drill or break anything you think may contain asbestos
- Don’t walk through debris that might contain asbestos as it will contaminate other areas of your home.
If you’re concerned that you may have damaged or asbestos in your home please contact us.
Where can I find out more information about asbestos materials in my home?
We hold a register with our homes’ asbestos survey results. If you want to see the survey, please call Freephone 0800 012 1311 to arrange an appointment.
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