Asbestos had multiple uses before. Even homeowners found this versatile and affordable material perfect for building their houses. With its incredible physical properties like insulation and tensile strength, asbestos is often used in wall sheeting, carpet and tile underlays, drainage and flue pipes, waterproof membrane, and many more.
However, in the mid-1980s, it was discovered that asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) are dangerous to one’s health. Long and constant exposure to asbestos is quite hazardous, and it may lead to diseases like asbestosis and lung cancer.
If you’re living in an old property (especially if it was built before mid-1980s), you should call on asbestos inspection and asbestos testing experts. They have the equipment to check and confirm if there are ACMs in your home, and with their knowledge and experience in dealing with this type of material, they can advise you on what to do to ensure your safety.
Typically, asbestos removal is recommended if the presence of ACMs is proven. In this case, you’ll need to enlist the help of professional asbestos removal contractors. But if you’re only dealing with a minor job (removing non-friable asbestos from an area not exceeding 10m2), you are legally allowed to carry out the job yourself.
Just make sure that you wear proper attire so that asbestos fibres won’t permeate your suit and you won’t be able to breathe them in. Afterwards, don’t forget to dispose of your suit by double wrapping it in a plastic bag and dumping it in your rubbish bin.
Things to remember when dealing with asbestos removal
Some homeowners only find out that their houses were built with ACMs during repairs or renovations, while others discover them through an accident. To ensure your safety during any of these circumstances, make sure to follow these tips on handling ACMs:
If you’re not sure that you have found asbestos, treat it like it is.
If you’re really not familiar with the different forms of asbestos, it can be difficult to ascertain that what you have found is asbestos. Yes, you can always check Google for answers, but that’s not enough. Instead of making assumptions and taking a possibly hazardous matter into your own hands, you should contact asbestos assessors in your area. Asbestos assessors are the experts in asbestos air monitoring and inspections; meanwhile, asbestos contractors are the ones you should call if you need professional asbestos removal services.
When you accidentally break asbestos, never attempt to touch or move it with your bare hands.
Get a damp cloth immediately and wipe the dust with it; ensure that no huge mass of particles is left uncleaned. However, if there is a crack on the ACM, you can try sealing it with paint or PVA glue. Furthermore, if the damage is very serious, it would be best to hire an emergency asbestos removal service as soon as possible.
Observe proper asbestos disposal.
The best thing to do is ask your local council regarding the approved sites where you can dispose of asbestos waste. There are also specific rules that you should keep in mind. If you don’t want the hassle of taking care of the entire process, you can rely on asbestos removal companies to help you out.
What to look for when hiring asbestos removal companies
The procedure involved in removing asbestos is quite risky; that’s why you must ensure that you’re getting the services of experienced and trusted contractors. Here are a few things that you need to check before completely entrusting the job with them:
There are different licences issued to asbestos removalists, and the two general types are: class A (friable asbestos removal) and class B (non-friable or bonded asbestos removal). Contractors who have Class A licences are allowed to remove the more dangerous type of asbestos. Friable asbestos is characterised as dry and loose, so it’s easy for them to crumble and release fibres into the air. Meanwhile, contractors holding Class B licences are limited to removing non-friable asbestos. Take note, though, that the licence of an asbestos contractor is different from that of an asbestos assessor.
Because asbestos removal has risks, it’s important to consider if your prospective contractors are insured. Even though they have years of experience in the industry, it’s difficult to guarantee that no accidents will happen while work is being done on your property. If they get injured during the job, it would give you peace of mind to know that the incident will be covered by their workers’ compensation. Meanwhile, if your property or any part of it gets damaged, it would definitely be a relief to know that their public liability insurance will cover it.
Check feedback on the businesses that you’re considering for the job. This will instantly tell you if they are trustworthy and reliable and if they have a reputation for quality services. Here are reviews on some of the top asbestos removal companies in Sydney:
”Thank you very much for removing our asbestos today. I was very anxious about it, but you and your colleagues were so professional and reassuring. Robert and I were impressed at how punctual you all were, how thorough, and how courteous. We felt included in the process, and were consulted regularly when new asbestos was found. We have never seen anyone work harder than Diego, Michael. Kaue and Ben. They were polite, willing to explain all the procedures, and determined to get the job done thoroughly and according to Australian standards. Nothing was too much trouble for them. They should be the model for all Australian workers; we would fix the economy in no time! A personal thank you to you for taking so much care in guiding the process. We have no hesitation in recommending your company to others.” - Robert from Springwood, NSW on 1st Choice Asbestos Removal
”Tony did a great job at a good price. We were very impressed with his prompt arrival, his professionalism and proficiency on the job. He did a great job and clean up afterwards and drove off with our cheque. We were very satisfied with the results by using Tony from Asbestos Away.” - Patrick from Bexley, NSW on Asbestos Away
Cost of asbestos removal services
Asbestos removal services cost around $45/hr. Of course, actual prices may vary depending on certain factors. At ServiceSeeking.com.au, you can get as many as 12 quotes from different businesses. This is pretty convenient as you can have a lot of choices in a matter of hours after posting your job on the site.