Asbestos

Some of our properties may contain asbestos. Asbestos was widely used from 1930 to around 1980 and houses and flats built or refurbished then may contain asbestos. This applies to all buildings, not only those owned and maintained by us.

Much of the asbestos is low risk and does not present any threat to safety if left sealed and undisturbed.

Our leaflet on asbestos gives you more information:

 


Is everyone exposed to asbestos?

As asbestos was used so widely everyone is exposed to very low levels of fibre in the air. Exposure at this very low level is unlikely to harm your health.

Higher levels of fibres may be present in the air where any asbestos containing materials have been damaged. It is unlikely that the levels of asbestos fibres will be harmful. If you are aware of any damaged asbestos within your home you should contact your local Housing office for advice.

Where am I likely to find asbestos within my home?

It is not always easy to tell whether a product contains asbestos as modern asbestos free materials will often look similar. It is usually older products that contain asbestos.

The most common uses of asbestos are:

  • Insulating board - used for fire protection, heat and sound insulation. Can be found in ducts, infill panels, ceiling tiles, wall lining, bath panels and partitions.
  • Asbestos cement products – used for roofing and wall cladding. It was also used for partitions, linings for walls and ceilings, bath panels, soffits, fire surrounds, flue pipes, cold water tanks and roofing tiles. You will often find this type of asbestos in garages and sheds where it was used for roof and wall cladding.
  • Other building materials – used in textured paints and plasters, for example Artex.
  • Heating appliances and domestic equipment – some warm air heating systems, electric storage heaters and some early coal effect gas fires contain asbestos. It has also been used in domestic equipment such as oven gloves, ironing boards and seals on cooker doors.

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What precautions should I take?

Asbestos containing materials that are in good condition and are unlikely to be damaged are often best left alone. Removal can lead to higher levels in the air for some time.

Take care when carrying out DIY. Do not drill, cut or disturb asbestos containing materials. Do not scrape or sand textured coatings such as Artex.

Remember:

  • Avoid disturbing or damaging asbestos materials that are in good condition
  • Take care not to disturb any asbestos containing materials when doing DIY. If in doubt, contact your local Housing office. You need our permission before doing alterations within your home

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Does Aberdeenshire Council do asbestos surveys?

We do carry out asbestos surveys of a sample of housing. This is usually done when homes are due to be improved, for example when kitchens and bathrooms are due to be upgraded. This is to make sure that contractors do not disturb any asbestos when they carry out work.

Information gathered is added to an asbestos register. If you need any information about an asbestos survey that has been done within your home please contact your local Housing office.

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