Removing Asbestos Siding

 Asbestos Siding Removal From Your Home

Without a doubt asbestos in your home can cause health issues if it has been disturbed or is cracked and peeling in any way.  Asbestos is a natural occurring material but when you are exposed to toxic fibers and dust it can cause numerous health issues, including mesothelioma, lung cancer, and upper respiratory diseases.  It isn’t something you want to fool around with and would not be considered a weekend project to tackle on your own.

 

Taking The Siding Down

Removing asbestos siding  can be done on your own but it involves many steps that must be followed to avoid contamination of any other areas around your home, or having someone breathe in the particle dusts from damaged asbestos.  Following these steps will reduce any risk to yourself and the areas surround your home.

  • Have an asbestos test completed to confirm you have asbestos in your siding
  • Get a permit.  This is a must do first step
  • Post signs stating your removing toxic waste
  • Wear disposable clothing such as coveralls, shoe covers, safety glasses, and rubber gloves
  • Never enter your home when wearing the contaminated clothing
  • Wear a HEPA filter mask to avoid breathing in the dust particles
  • Keep the asbestos siding wet as you are removing it and work from the top down to the bottom
  • Avoid breaking or dropping the asbestos siding pieces
  • Have 6 ml plastic sheeting around the area you are working in, and use heavy plastic bags to dispose of the asbestos siding you are removing
  • Label the plastic bags with “toxic materials”
  • Dispose of all contaminated clothing in the plastic bags
  • Dispose of all toxic materials at a credited toxic disposal plant

Following these steps will help you avoid contaminating your area further.  When considering removing asbestos siding you will want to access the time it will take you to remove it.  Can it all be done in one day? or will you need a few days to remove it all?  Take this into consideration when you begin this project because you will need multiple sets of disposable clothing for each work day. The abatement of asbestos can be time consuming and once you begin you will want to finish as quickly as possible.

If there are family members living in the home you may want to have them relocate until the job is complete to minimize any risks to them, especially if there are small children who could accidentally touch the asbestos.  Children get into everything and it can take one small accident to cause some serious harm to them.

Breathing In Asbestos Fibers

When asbestos fibers or dust are inhaled the microscopic fibers become lodged in the lining of your lungs, sort of like tiny splinters from a piece of wood.  It is impossible to get these splinters our of your lungs which leads to health problems.  This is why people who work with asbestos on a daily basis, or have been inadvertently exposed to asbestos on a regular basis develop health complications.  Even family members of asbestos workers have been known to develop asbestos related diseases, when the asbestos worker unknowingly carried asbestos fibers into the home on a regular basis.  It is imperative to bath before re-entering your home to avoid this kind of situation.

Covering Asbestos Siding

Some people consider covering the siding instead of removing it.  What happens when this is done, is when you are nailing new siding overtop of the old asbestos siding, you are damaging it by putting nail holes in it.  Each time you hammer a nail in, asbestos fibers and dust are being released into the air.  It is generally not advised to cover asbestos siding, as you will be making the matter worse and will be left with residual asbestos underneath the new siding, which could cause problems for years to come.

Is It Worth The Risk?

Do you still want to tackle removing asbestos siding from your home?  If so be sure to carefully follow all of the steps outlined.  The cost of asbestos removal can be pricey but is it really worth the potential dangers of asbestos removal on your own?