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Asbestos has been proven to be a dangerous substance – just coming in contact with it can potentially be harmful to your health.
Thankfully, asbestos has seen a nationwide ban in Australia some 20-plus years ago – but are you completely safe?
The cost of asbestos removal can never be compared to the cost of your health, if you feel you have asbestos in your home or workplace then start considering the costs to have it removed.
People think that asbestos is a man-made material because of its deadly effects on the human body. Contrary to popular belief, asbestos is a naturally occurring substance. It is abundantly found in certain parts of Australia where so-called mining towns have surfaced.
Asbestos grew in popularity after the Second World War because of its affordability and fire-resistant properties. It was an attractive building material to contractors and at face value, it certainly seemed to get the job done. What people weren’t aware of at the time was that asbestos has repercussions on our health.
When mishandled or when it deteriorates, asbestos can break into microscopic particles light enough to fly around the air. It’s pretty much invisible to the naked eye, which makes people think that it’s okay for them to touch or work with asbestos. Over the years people who have worked with asbestos complained of health issues, enough to prompt scientists to dig deeper and investigate whether asbestos was the culprit or not.
By the 1970s it was determined that asbestos caused a slew of health-related problems, including cancer. It took several more years for asbestos to be banned for usage in many countries and by the early 2000s Australia put a stop to asbestos mining and its use in construction.
There are six different types of asbestos, which are classified based on their physical properties and fibre structure:
This is the most commonly used type of asbestos, accounting for approximately 95% of all asbestos used in the past. Chrysotile asbestos fibres are curly and pliable, making them useful in a variety of applications.
Crocidolite asbestos is blue asbestos that is much less commonly used than chrysotile. It is considered to be one of the most dangerous types of asbestos, due to its needle-like fibres that can be easily inhaled.
Amosite asbestos is brown asbestos that is commonly used in insulation and other building materials. It is considered to be a hazardous type of asbestos due to its long, straight fibres that can be easily inhaled.
Anthophyllite asbestos is a rare type of asbestos that was used in some insulation and other building materials. It is not considered to be as hazardous as crocidolite or amosite, but it still presents a risk if it becomes airborne.
Tremolite asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that is often found in talc, vermiculite, and other building materials. It can be dangerous if it becomes airborne, as it is known to cause lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Actinolite asbestos is another naturally occurring mineral that can be found in building materials. It is not as commonly used as other types of asbestos, but it still presents a risk if it becomes airborne.
All types of asbestos fibres can cause serious health problems if they are inhaled, including lung cancer, mesothelioma, and asbestosis. If you suspect that your home may contain asbestos, it’s important to have it inspected by a professional who is trained and certified in asbestos inspection and removal.
Asbestos was commonly used in building materials prior to the 1980s and may still be present in older homes. Some of the common places where asbestos can be found in a home include:
It’s important to note that if asbestos-containing materials are in good condition and left undisturbed, they typically do not pose a health risk. However, if the materials are damaged, deteriorating, or disturbed, they can release asbestos fibres into the air, which can be inhaled and cause serious health problems.
Asbestos removal is a crucial task for ensuring the safety of your home and loved ones. With the potential health hazards associated with asbestos, it’s essential to get an accurate estimate of the cost of asbestos removal.
This comprehensive guide will walk you through the factors affecting asbestos removal costs, different types of asbestos, cost breakdowns, inspection and testing costs, regional pricing variations, tips for estimating costs accurately, and the importance of hiring a reputable asbestos removal company.
Let’s dive into the world of asbestos removal in Australia and make your home a safer place.
When it comes to asbestos removal costs, several factors come into play. The property size, location, accessibility, and the type of asbestos present all have a bearing on the final asbestos removal price. Generally speaking, prices can range from approximately $30 to $150 per square metre. In addition to the fees charged by the asbestos removal company, there is typically a $450 fee for disposing of the asbestos waste, and the asbestos removalist may charge for their travel time to the disposal site. So, how much does asbestos removal cost? It ultimately depends on these various factors.
Engaging professional asbestos removal experts or a reputable company is not just about getting the job done. It’s about ensuring the long-term health and safety of your property and its occupants. Understanding the costs involved and making informed decisions is a vital part of planning your asbestos removal project.
The type of asbestos present in your home significantly influences the removal process and costs, hence the need to identify it. There are two main categories of asbestos: friable and non-friable (bonded).
Asbestos was once a popular building material due to its heat resistance and durability properties. However, it was later identified as a potential health hazard when its fibres are released into the atmosphere and inhaled, leading to approximately 675 deaths per year linked to mesothelioma and lung cancer caused by asbestos. Safe handling and removal of asbestos-containing materials is paramount in preventing potential health risks.
Friable asbestos is a loose, crumbly material containing asbestos that can be easily crumbled or pulverized with hand pressure. This type of asbestos poses a significant health risk, as it can readily release asbestos fibres into the air, leading to inhalation and potential health hazards. Examples of friable asbestos materials include loose insulation, sprayed-on insulation, and certain types of insulation boards.
Careful handling and removal of friable asbestos is necessary to minimize the risk of exposure.
In contrast, non-friable (bonded) asbestos is a type of asbestos that has been bonded with other materials, making it less likely to become airborne and thus, less hazardous. Non-friable asbestos refers to asbestos-containing materials that are solid, rigid, and cannot be crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder by hand pressure.
The primary concern associated with non-friable (bonded) asbestos is the potential for puncture due to accidental or deliberate drilling during renovations, which could result in the material escaping.
Breaking down the expenses involved in asbestos removal is a crucial step towards fully understanding the cost. Here are some factors to consider:
Asbestos removal can range from $30 to $150 per square meter.
Additional costs may include waste disposal and travel time to the disposal location.
Regional variations in pricing must also be considered.
By considering these factors, you can get a better idea of the overall cost of asbestos removal.
Researching local contractors, obtaining multiple quotes, and understanding the scope of the project are necessary steps to accurately estimate asbestos removal costs. This will help you make informed decisions and budget for the removal process accordingly.
Considering the cost of asbestos inspection and testing is a prerequisite before delving into the removal process. These services help confirm the presence of asbestos in your home and ensure that no residual asbestos fibres remain after the removal process. A thorough asbestos inspection can cost around $400, with additional lab fees for multiple samples. To reduce expenses, you can opt for a five-day or week-long wait period instead of same-day service for laboratory testing.
The objective of an asbestos inspection is to:
Confirm that asbestos has not been used in any other area of the residence
Properly inspect and test your home for asbestos
Safeguard your family’s health
Ensure compliance with regulations.
Asbestos removal pricing can vary depending on your location. In Australia, Victoria and Queensland offer more economical rates, while South Australia is comparatively more expensive. Factors such as location, extent of work, and local regulations can affect regional variations in asbestos removal pricing. The cost of asbestos removal can range from $30 to $100 per square meter, with a minimum removal charge of approximately $2,000.
Awareness of these regional variations aids in budgeting and ensures fair pricing for your asbestos removal project. Always research local contractors and obtain multiple quotes to get the best deal possible.
To accurately estimate asbestos removal costs, consider the following tips:
Research abatement methods and factor in inspection, hauling, and replacement costs.
Prioritize health over cost, as cutting corners can lead to severe consequences.
Only hire professionals to avoid health risks and potential legal issues.
Finally, get multiple quotes from reputable asbestos removal companies to ensure you’re getting a fair price. By following these tips, you can confidently estimate asbestos removal costs and make informed decisions about your home improvement project. Remember, when it comes to asbestos removal, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
The success and safety of your asbestos removal project hinge on selecting a reputable asbestos removal company. Look for certified, insured, and experienced asbestos removalists with proper disposal procedures and a good track record. Ensure the contractor holds a valid state licence, as it is illegal to hire an uninsured asbestos removal service or an unlicensed contractor.
The asbestos removal contractor is responsible for properly sealing the asbestos to ensure no hazardous materials are released into the environment and disposing of the asbestos at a designated disposal point as mandated by the state. Incorrect removal and disposal of asbestos can result in fines in excess of $7,500 and may even involve imprisonment. Always prioritize safety and compliance when hiring an asbestos removal company.
Despite the potential high cost of asbestos removal, strategies exist to keep your project within budget. First, consider encapsulation as a cost-saving alternative to complete removal. Encapsulation involves sealing the asbestos material in place with a protective coating to prevent the release of asbestos fibres into the air. However, always prioritize health and safety over cost when considering your options.
Next, only hire local asbestos removal experts for the job, as attempting DIY asbestos removal can lead to serious health risks and legal consequences. To remove asbestos safely and effectively, it is crucial to rely on professionals.
Finally, obtain multiple quotes from reputable asbestos removal companies to ensure you’re getting the best deal possible. By following these tips, you can keep costs down while still ensuring a safe and successful asbestos removal project.
While doing it yourself may appear cost-effective, removing asbestos without professional assistance can result in severe health and legal repercussions. DIY asbestos removal can result in exposure to asbestos fibres, which can have serious health implications, including lung cancer, mesothelioma, and asbestosis.
Moreover, DIY asbestos removal is prohibited in numerous countries and may incur fines and other sanctions. To ensure the health and safety of your family, always hire a reputable asbestos removal company for your project. It’s better to invest in professional services than to risk your health and face potential legal issues.
Asbestos can be found in various locations within Australian homes, including asbestos roof, cladding, insulation, and flooring materials. In Brisbane homes, for example, asbestos is commonly found in roofing, cladding, insulation, and flooring materials as well. Asbestos-containing materials may also be present in walls and ceilings as fibro sheeting and ‘Versilux’ sheets, and in bathrooms as tilux sheeting over the bathtub and shower recess, as well as in the eaves.
Knowledge of these common locations aids in identifying potential asbestos-containing materials in your home, paving the way for their safe removal and disposal.
In conclusion, asbestos removal is a critical task for maintaining the safety and well-being of your home and family. Understanding the factors affecting asbestos removal costs, the different types of asbestos, and the importance of hiring a reputable company can help you make informed decisions about your project. Always prioritize health and safety over cost, and remember that investing in professional asbestos removal services is an investment in the long-term well-being of your family and property.
In Australia, there is a maximum penalty of up to $10,000 for non-compliance with the Health (Asbestos) Regulations 1992 and fines of up to $7,500 (individual) and $15,000 (company) apply for breaking the law. For court cases, penalties of up to $1,000,000 may apply.
For asbestos removal in NSW, you must undertake training and assessment through a registered training organisation (RTO) and obtain either a non-friable or friable asbestos removal licence. SafeWork NSW recommends that you contact a licensed asbestos professional to assess or remove any amount of asbestos.
The cost of asbestos removal is affected by property size, location, accessibility, and the type of asbestos present.
Friable asbestos is loose and crumbly, whereas non-friable asbestos is bonded with other materials, making it less prone to releasing fibres into the air and less hazardous.
Asbestos inspection and testing typically costs around $400, with additional fees for multiple samples.
Posted By: Tommy Clappers