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Asbestos

What is asbestos?

Asbestos was commonly used in building materials between the 1950s and 1980s; it is a strong fibrous mineral, which can resist heat and chemicals. Almost all buildings constructed or altered during this period are likely to contain asbestos.

It is difficult to visually identify because products containing asbestos can look the same as those that do not. Specialist laboratory investigations by a microscope are often the only way the difference can be identified.

Am I at risk?

Asbestos is generally safe if fibres are undisturbed and will cause no risk. If asbestos-containing materials deteriorate or get damaged, then you and others may be at risk.

If materials are in good condition and unlikely to be disturbed, then the risk presented is minimal. DIY activities such as sanding, drilling or hammering may disturb and possibly damage products containing asbestos. To avoid placing yourself and others at risk please seek advice from us before carrying out DIY work.

Asbestos surveys

If necessary, we can arrange to have a sample taken from your home and tested to establish if it contains asbestos. If asbestos is present, then we may undertake work to deal with it if necessary.

This service is provided free for our customers, but leaseholders are responsible for their own fixtures and fittings. Where asbestos is damaged we will deal with it in a safe and appropriate way.

Your health and safety is extremely important and we follow all the required rules and regulations concerning the management, removal, and disposal of asbestos.

Where can asbestos be found in my home?

Asbestos-containing material (ACM) can be found in various places within the home. The list below gives typical places where it may have been used. 

This list is not exhaustive, and not all the items will be in your home. It may be that one or two products may be present at any one time, or asbestos might not be present at all.

  1. Boilers – insulation to boilers, boiler flue pipes and storage radiators
  2. Building exterior – roof sheets and tiles, fascia boards, exterior cladding, guttering and drain pipes.
  3. Interior surfaces – textured wall and ceiling finishes (e.g. artex), duct panels (access to pipework), panels behind radiators/heaters, floor tiles, suspended ceiling panels and underside of stairs, infill panels (above, below or next to doorways/ windows)
  4. Other items – bath panels, fireplace panels, panels to underside of sinks, water tanks, and pipe lagging
  5. Outbuildings – garage and shed roofs and sometimes walls

All these items may contain asbestos and should be treated as such unless you have had a survey or told by us that it is not present.

In order to reduce exposure to Asbestos we will:

  • Compile and maintain a comprehensive asbestos register which will contain assessments of the risk from materials containing asbestos in our properties
  • Where we hold information about the presence, location and condition of materials containing asbestos we will provide it to customers and any other persons who will potentially be exposed to asbestos, such as contractors carrying repair work
  • Ensure that the appropriate actions are taken by any persons who are likely to disturb materials containing asbestos including employees, contractors, and customers.
  • Carry out surveys when necessary to identify asbestos-containing material in homes and other buildings such as sheds and garages