Should I Replace My Asbestos Garage Roof?
Posted: Jul 19, 2019
What is asbestos?
Asbestos is a naturally occurring fibrous rock, found in many parts of the world. Its use was finally banned in the UK in 1999. Up until then, it had been used widely in materials commonly found in homes, buildings and vehicles e.g. clutch, brake pads, roof sheets, Artex, pipe insulation and fire blankets. It was a very popular material because it was cheap to produce, insulating, fire-resistant and strong. However, it was later discovered that if the tiny fibres in asbestos are inhaled they can lead to fatal diseases such as lung cancer and malignant mesothelioma. The first symptoms of these diseases can appear anywhere between 10 and 50 years after the first exposure and there is no known cure.
Does my garage roof contain asbestos?
If your garage roof has cement roof sheets and was made in the 60s, 70s or even the 80s, there is a good chance that it contains asbestos. Fortunately, if the asbestos roof sheets are in good condition and left alone then they are not dangerous. However, if the garage roof is old, the cement in the roof sheet may start to deteriorate and break down. This can lead to fibres being released into the air. This is when the garage roof should be replaced. Repair of this type of roof is not usually an option as scraping off moss and lichen or drilling holes can release more asbestos fibres.
Replacing an asbestos garage roof
Asbestos is a very dangerous material and so removing an asbestos garage roof is not something we would advise doing yourself. We would always recommend getting the help of an expert to remove it. This is because to remove asbestos safely, the correct standard and type of protective clothing must be worn at all times. In addition, the old asbestos-containing materials must be double-bagged and labelled with the correct hazard warning signage. The materials must then be disposed of in an authorised landfill site.
Can anyone replace an asbestos garage roof
If you suspect that you have an asbestos garage roof it is advisable to call a company that is licensed by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) to remove and dispose of asbestos. You can then be sure that they know how to handle and dispose of asbestos safely. Unfortunately, asbestos garage roofs will cost more to replace. This is because materials containing asbestos have very strict rules on how they are disposed of. It can, on average, cost up to twice as much to dispose of than any other types of garage roofing material.
A garage can be an extremely useful addition to any home as long as it is watertight and in good condition. Even if your garage roof contains asbestos, as long as it is in good condition it can be left alone. However, if you have an old asbestos garage roof that is starting to leak and giving you problems it is better to call in the help of a specialist garage roof company rather than try to repair it yourself. They will be able to access the damage and see if it can be repaired without disturbing the asbestos cement roof panels. If this is not possible, they will have the skills to remove the old roof safely, dispose of the materials as required by the law and then replace it with a brand new one.
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