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#200316 - 03/28/11 12:13 PM Abestos
dougwells Offline


Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 1226
Loc: kamloops BC Canada
I really have not gave a lot of consideration where we can find asbestos in an older home.

Edited by dougwells (03/28/11 12:16 PM)

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#200317 - 03/28/11 12:27 PM Re: Abestos [Re: dougwells]
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
I suppose it's good to remind folks of just how universal the use of asbestos was, up until the late '70's. Indeed, it was often an 'option' for the 'better materials.

And why not? It didn't rot or dry out. It didn't burn or rust away. The fiberous nature let it be formed, and lent durability to everything that had it. Nor did it conduct electricity.

For us, the major source is most likely in the drywall joint compound. Asbestos fibers were often included, as a way to minimize cracking and shrinking.

#200319 - 03/28/11 01:13 PM Re: Abestos [Re: dougwells]
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
While we're at it ....

Asbestos fibers have to be JUST the right size, then be inhaled, to cause problems. Various procedures have been developed to reduce our risk when working with asbestos.

Perhaps more invidious are the risks posed by paints. OK, so everyone has heard about "lead paint" ... but how many know what that actually means?

Lead is but one of the heavy metals whose compounds have been used to color paint. In the case of lead, it was/is used to produce white, yellow, and greenish hues. I say "is," because it is STILL IN USE in automotive, industrial, and specialty applications.

What about other 'heavy metals?' Another commonly used - this one for reds and oranges - is cadmium. Cadmium can be just as nasty. So are mercury compounds, used for the same colors. "Hexavalent Chrome," made famous by Erin Brockovitch, is another colorant used.

The means of ingestion differs from asbestos, as does the sort of damage caused. That's not really relevant here. What matters is that we daily cut, sand, rub, tear, and sweep up these other materials as well.

There's some sense to making a greater effort overall to contain our messes.

#200411 - 03/31/11 07:21 AM Re: Abestos [Re: dougwells]
trobb Offline

Registered: 06/08/06
Posts: 111
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I was installing a switch for my aunt just last summer, flipped it on, and saw a nice big (paint can) full of "Black Asbestos Furnace Caulk." Obvious what it was used for, just funny that it's still around and still full. Any takers?

Also, being in the theatre industry (live theatre), most of the older lighting used asbestos cable. It was the only material capable of withstanding the heat until synthetics were developed. We got used to wrapping the whips in e-tape when we worked with them, to keep the fibers contained.

Edited by trobb (03/31/11 07:21 AM)


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