Many homes in Ireland built before 2000 contain Asbestos Containing Materials or ACMs. Some of the more common ACMs in Irish homes are:
Textured coatings/stippled ceilings
Textured coatings, also known as stippled ceilings, Artex, popcorn ceiling, decorative coatings were very popular in the 70's and 80's. They usually contain between 3-5% Chrysotile asbestos. Typically, the textured coatings are well encapsulated with years of paint. The risk of fibre release is low but may occur when subject to abrasion.
Asbestos Insulating Board
Typically found behind old fuseboards or on garage ceilings, Asbestos Insulating Board or AIB usually contains between 16-40% Amosite asbestos. Aas this is a semi-compressed board it is more likely to release fibres as a result of damage or abrasion. Work on AIB can give rise to high levels of asbestos fibre release.
Asbestos Cement Products
Asbestos Cement Products may include slates, corrugated sheeting, gutters, downpipes, flues and cowls. They generally contain 10-15% asbestos bound in cement. The asbestos fibres are usually firmly bound within the cement matrix but can be released through mechanical damage or deterioration from weathering over many years.
How will I know for sure?
A survey, carried out by a qualified asbestos surveyor, is the only way to be sure if there are Asbestos Containing Materials in your house. The surveyor will take samples of suspected materials which will later be analysed in a laboratory. They will also carry out a risk assessment on any Asbestos Containing Materials found and give advise on whether they can be managed in situ or should be removed.
If you would like further information on they types of survey that we conduct, or if you have any questions about asbestos please get in contact with us.
Neal is the MD and founder of Asbestos Safe. He has 20 years experience working with Asbestos and hazardous waste and decided to bring that experience to the safety industry.