Renovating Roulette? Asbestos Awareness

Renovating Roulette

Australians adore their DIY, but experts are warning not to risk playing ‘renovation roulette’ with asbestos.

If you have recently purchased a new home and are looking to carry out renovations big or small you need to be aware that your property may contain asbestos.

You may be thinking your home is free of asbestos as the Building & Pest Inspector didn’t find any asbestos, this is because asbestos detection does not form part of an Australian Standard Building Inspection. Asbestos identification is a completely separate inspection.

If you’re thinking about renovating your home it is strongly recommended that you have an asbestos audit conducted on your home to ensure the safety of not only you and your family but also the trades people that will be carrying out the works.

  1. Asbestos can be found in and around most homes built or renovated before 1987.
  2. It doesn’t matter whether a home is made of weatherboard, brick fibro or has exterior cladding -asbestos can be found in each of these;
  3. Exposure to asbestos fibres is very common during home renovations. A study (Medical Journal of Australia) found more than 60% of DIY renovators reported exposure; 53% reported that their partner had been exposed, and 40% said that their children had been exposed.
  4. Asbestos can be found in kitchens, bathrooms, laundries, underfloor covering, behind wall and floor tiles, in cement floors, internal and external walls, garages, ceilings, eaves, fences and many more.
  5. There is no safe level of exposure to asbestos fibres.  If you disturb asbestos when renovating and release fibres, you could be putting the health of you and your family at risk.

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