If you have had asbestos testing done at your property and discovered that there is asbestos, you may be anxious to take action as soon as possible. Reports suggest that latent asbestos is responsible for thousands of deaths per year, so your concerns are entirely valid. Asbestos exposure can trigger a range of different medical problems, including lung cancers. When asbestos is discovered, one of the main questions is, whether you should have the asbestos removed or whether you should leave it in place and have the material specially treated to protect yourself.
The pros and cons of asbestos removal
Asbestos is only thought to be dangerous once it has been damaged, because damage is what releases the potentially harmful fibers into the air. If asbestos removal is not carried out by an expert, the asbestos can be damaged during the removal process, and fibers could be spread throughout your property. This could actually create a problem, even if the substance did not pose a problem before. However, if the asbestos is already broken and damaged, removal may be the safest option. By using an asbestos removal expert, you will be able to ensure that the removal and subsequent clear up operation (if required) is conducted safely. Choosing to have the asbestos removed can help to give you peace of mind, and will mean that you do not need to worry about causing damage to the substance in future. Remember that when the substance was initially used in the building of your property, it was used to serve a purpose, and it is likely that you will need to pay to have the asbestos replaced with something else to serve that purpose instead.
The pros and cons of leaving the asbestos in place
If the asbestos is undamaged, experts may recommend that you leave it in place whilst taking steps to mitigate the risk. This may involve covering the material with a special substance, which makes it less likely to release harmful fibers, even if it is damaged. Of course, if the material is badly damaged, it can still cause health risks. If you do decided to leave the substance in place, it is important that you regularly monitor it, so that you will know if any potentially dangerous damage does occur. Leaving the asbestos in place means that it should continue to serve the purpose that it was originally installed to do.
The bottom line
Whether you decide to have asbestos removal or asbestos repair will often depend upon the results of the initial assessment. If the asbestos is intact, you may be advised to leave the substance in situ and continue to monitor it. If the asbestos is already crumbly or badly damaged, removal by a trained professional is normally recommended. Whatever option you choose, you should never try to do any work with the asbestos by yourself, unless you are a trained professional who understands the laws and requirements which surround the handling and disposal of harmful substances.
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