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Asbestos sheeting in ceiling - remove or plaster over?

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  1. #1
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    Lightbulb Asbestos sheeting in ceiling - remove or plaster over?

    Hi there

    I'm in the planning stage of a first time reno to a post war home in Brissie. A friend of mine's a builder and took a look at the materials used and identified asbestos sheeting in the ceiling and in the walls of the bathroom and kitchen.

    The plan was to tile over the asbestos in the bathroom (floor to ceiling to it will all be covered), kitchen cabinet and splashback 'over' the walls in the kitchen and plaster over the ceiling sheets.

    Any thoughts as to whether this is a good/safe plan or if we should be looking at removing it all. FYI - the asbestos sheets are in fairly good condition so says my builder friend.

    Cheers
    Dayle

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    Old Chippy 6K
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    I'd be taking the opportunity to safely remove it all if your renovations are major and/or if you have the money to do it now anyway, but you could also so what your builder says. I might even do part - so in the bathroom tile over, but in the kitchen remove it all.
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

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    I would think it was impossible not to disturb it in the ceiling if you are screwing plasterboard up. Is that so?

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    The walls are no biggy and are just as easily removed and resheeted but the ceiling is a different animal. 60 years of crap as well as the asbestos is sitting up there and all of it will end up in your home. For this reason I battened over the ceiling and resheeted (although not with gyprock). I shot pine battens on with my framing gun. Quick and the timber traps the fibres where the nail goes through. Have to very accurate though or you risk breaking a decent piece with a misfire. Also have to aware of wiring etc... that is laying on the ceiling sheets. You could maybe get the roof vacuumed first to minimise the crap if you want it gone for good.

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    Thanks guys

    Looks like the safest way will be to bring it down then. Am I right in thinking that I'll need a professional to remove the asbestos? Or can I do some of it myself if I use the precautions - thick black plastic bag, labeled etc???

  6. #6
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    You can do 10 m2 yourself but then you have to get rid of it which is a major PITA and costs $$$. Better off leaving it to the "pros" (term used loosely) although be careful who you choose.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ringtail View Post
    For this reason I battened over the ceiling and resheeted (although not with gyprock). I shot pine battens on with my framing gun. Quick and the timber traps the fibres where the nail goes through. Have to very accurate though or you risk breaking a decent piece with a misfire. Also have to aware of wiring etc... that is laying on the ceiling sheets.
    Sounds reasonably safe and a good option.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ringtail View Post
    The walls are no biggy and are just as easily removed and resheeted but the ceiling is a different animal. 60 years of crap as well as the asbestos is sitting up there and all of it will end up in your home. For this reason I battened over the ceiling and resheeted (although not with gyprock). I shot pine battens on with my framing gun. Quick and the timber traps the fibres where the nail goes through. Have to very accurate though or you risk breaking a decent piece with a misfire. Also have to aware of wiring etc... that is laying on the ceiling sheets. You could maybe get the roof vacuumed first to minimise the crap if you want it gone for good.
    What about if you want to fit down lights at a later date?

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    No drama. I have surface mounted exposed gloge down lights so the only thing going through the AC is the cable. I paint a bit of bondcrete onto the roof side of the sheet, let it soak through and dry, then the sparky punches through it with his screwdriver to break a small ( 20 mm) piece out which then ( if recovered) is boncreted to the sheet. If the bit falls through it sits harmlessly in the void between the two ceilings. Must add that the new ceiling in a combo of ply and custom orb.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ringtail View Post
    No drama. I have surface mounted exposed gloge down lights so the only thing going through the AC is the cable. I paint a bit of bondcrete onto the roof side of the sheet, let it soak through and dry, then the sparky punches through it with his screwdriver to break a small ( 20 mm) piece out which then ( if recovered) is boncreted to the sheet. If the bit falls through it sits harmlessly in the void between the two ceilings. Must add that the new ceiling in a combo of ply and custom orb.
    Sorted! I don't think it will be to far in the future when house sales will require an asbestos register as

    part of the sale contract

  11. #11
    4K Club Member ringtail's Avatar
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    Yep. Nanny state crap. It wont do a thing to solve the issue just keep some public servant in a job. Whats next ? making vistors sign declaration that they are aware the property contains asbestos ? Well thats every property as far as I'm concerned. With tens of thousands of super 6 roofs out there freely giving their fibres off and travelling on the breeze right into the houses all around for kilometres. Whats the point ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by goldie1 View Post
    Sorted! I don't think it will be to far in the future when house sales will require an asbestos register as part of the sale contract
    This has been the case in the ACT since 2003 Asbestos laws for ACT homes | Asbestos Awareness where the Civil Law (Sale of Residential Property) Act 2003 states that:
    • if there is a current asbestos assessment report for the premises, the seller must provide a copy of the report with a contract for sale;
    • If there is no asbestos assessment for the premises, or, if a current asbestos assessment report for the premises exists but the seller cannot, after taking reasonable steps, find or get the report, they must provide the Asbestos Advice for the premises with a contract for sale, as it provides specific information about asbestos in and around the house being sold.
    In addition, the Dangerous Substances Act 2004 states that if there is a current asbestos assessment reportfor residential premises that has been undertaken by an A class licensed asbestos assessor , you need to provide a copy of the report when you
    • engage someone to provide a construction service at the premises; or
    • engage someone to do other work prescribed by regulation
    It is also recommended you talk to the person who is going to work on the property (e.g. maintenance and trades people) about the likelihood of asbestos on the premises, so that any materials containing asbestos can be safely managed.

    I'd be surprised if at least some other jurisdictions don't have similar requirements. These are not 'nanny' state laws, but laws to make sure there is awareness of the likely presence of a substance that has risks involved when dealing with it. They don't mandate you remove it, just tell you that you aren't allowed hide the fact it is in a building and if you do have it removed that it has to be done safely.
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

  13. #13
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    Thats fair. I have no drama telling people that my house contains asbestos but thats all it should be, no forced removal

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    You would remove it if it's airborne tho?

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    Quote Originally Posted by shauck View Post
    You would remove it if it's airborne tho?
    Like a super 6 roof ?

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    It's amazing the lack of knowledge there is about asbestos. I often talk to people who are compleatly surprised when you point

    out to them areas in their home which are proberbly asbestos. Most of them think it's something from the distant past and

    their only knowledge is the horror stories in the media when some one famous dies from it. Allso none of those dozy reno

    shows on tv ever give it a mention.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ringtail View Post
    Like a super 6 roof ?
    if those super 6 sheets are airborne gotta wait for the cyclone to pass first!

    But as I said earlier in this post if any major reno is being done then removal makes sense - for all concerned. But it costs extra and so long as dealt with safely there is no technical or immediate health need to replace - just a really good idea so that eventually the number of places with any asbestos at all will be tiny.
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by ringtail View Post
    Like a super 6 roof ?
    I'm guessing (coz I don't know what that is), that you are a funny guy.

    I will definitely admit to not having thought about asbstos until I started reading the posts on this forum. It should be talked about in trade schools, on reno shows, etc, for sure. In trade school, the emphasis is on new buildings. There was nothing on renovation (I hadn't done my last year) in the time I went.

  19. #19
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    Super 6 is an asbestos corrugated roof sheeting - very common on post-war (WWII that is) industrial buildings (not in residential as it was very dangerous to walk on - good practice, but not always done, was to have wire mesh underneath so that anyone accidentally treading off a purlin or batten line would not simply fall straight through!) and was also used as a fencing material right up until the end of asbestos in the 80s - Super six was 1985.

    So yes ringtail was joking . . .

    A good site on fencing is here: How to tell the difference between Super Six and Hardifence | The Asbestos Removal Guide

    My memory might be wrong, but I think the 6 was for 6" between centres of the corrugations
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

  20. #20
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    What I know as super 6 is common on residential roofing in the older areas of Logan, Southport and Redcliffe where it was used on cheaper holiday homes and units. Quite ok to walk on unless wet and covered with some sort of moss that grew on it. May be different in your part of the world. Commonly used for fencing too.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhilT2 View Post
    What I know as super 6 is common on residential roofing in the older areas of Logan, Southport and Redcliffe where it was used on cheaper holiday homes and units. Quite ok to walk on unless wet and covered with some sort of moss that grew on it. May be different in your part of the world. Commonly used for fencing too.
    It was sometimes used on that sort of residence and I have no doubt more often in some areas than others - hard to give a general answer and cover all locations. I spent considerable time on NSW North coast and yes there were a few there too and on the South Coast. But it's use on urban residential roofs was not what I would call 'common'. Fine to walk on if one stays on the fixing lines - way too easy to fall through or crack if one walks on the sheet centres. As with all concrete products they get harder with age, but also brittle. Fencing was common - especially in high water/humidity areas as it did not rot and didn't need painting (if one was OK with drab grey and molds of various hues . . .
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

  22. #22
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    Its absolutely everywhere in Brisbane except the newer suburbs. Any old suburbs are full of it. My roof was super six until smashed in a hail storm in 1985 ( i was in high school then). Still the odd bit up in the roof space. Ive got 3 in my street alone. Bulk fences and house close ins aswell. Still on nearly every old industrial shed too

  23. #23
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    Ive got 3 in my street alone
    That's just counting the ones that you can see. I've run across a few where the asbestos roof has been sheeted over, usually with tin but often with those metal tiles. A cheaper way to fix hail damage I presume perhaps when there has been no insurance.

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    Mmmmmm the lovely decromastic roof tile ( I think thats what they are called). Metal covered in sandpaper - bloody awful. + all the garden sheds , outhouses, garages and fences all done with super 6

  25. #25
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    Gotta love Qld!
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

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    4K Club Member ringtail's Avatar
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    Tru dat

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    Default Asbestos ceiling

    Hi folks - a related question.

    I've got a crack across one sheet of asbestos ceiling in my garage. Now we're not talking about the Sistine Chapel here so I'm looking for some inexpensive way of repairing it. Each sheet is about 2.5m x 1m. The sheet edges are separated by the usual little plastic H-section joining strips about 15mm wide. The crack is along the centre of the sheet for over 1m. Also one side of the crack is about 1 or 2mm higher than the other side.

    Any suggestions for something I can apply to pretty up this sheet? I obviously would prefer not to go knocking the sheet out and replacing it because of the dust risk.

    Thanks for any suggestions.
    Davewastech

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    Plenty of Super Six roofs in southern Sydney's older suburbs, we even had wall cladding before reno's

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    Quote Originally Posted by davewastech View Post
    Hi folks - a related question.

    I've got a crack across one sheet of asbestos ceiling in my garage. Now we're not talking about the Sistine Chapel here so I'm looking for some inexpensive way of repairing it. Each sheet is about 2.5m x 1m. The sheet edges are separated by the usual little plastic H-section joining strips about 15mm wide. The crack is along the centre of the sheet for over 1m. Also one side of the crack is about 1 or 2mm higher than the other side.

    Any suggestions for something I can apply to pretty up this sheet? I obviously would prefer not to go knocking the sheet out and replacing it because of the dust risk.

    Thanks for any suggestions.
    Davewastech

    Not 100 % sure but Ive never seen AC sheet joined with the plastic H connectors. I thought the plastic came along after asbestos was well and truly gone from the market. Could be totally wrong though.

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    Default Asbestos ceiling

    Quote Originally Posted by ringtail View Post
    Not 100 % sure but Ive never seen AC sheet joined with the plastic H connectors. I thought the plastic came along after asbestos was well and truly gone from the market. Could be totally wrong though.
    Hmm, interesting...
    Well the house was built in the mid 1970s and the garage is an under-main-roof type. So I presumed (quite possibly wrongly) that the ceiling was also installed that time, which would mean asbestos. Overall the garage looks like it's never been painted or modernised for a very long time. We just bought this place last year so we don't know the exact history.

    So there is the possibility that this cement sheet is newish, ie not asbestos?

    Thanks for reply.
    Cheers,
    Davewastech

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    The plastic moulding was around when AC sheets were as well, I started my trade in 1977 & I was using it then.
    regards inter

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    PVC strip joints well and truly in use before asbestos stopped in mid-80s. Certainly in early 70's, I think late '60s in Australia - US and Europe PVC extrusions were early 60s. So almost certainly asbestos sheets.

    In any case you could just use some acrylic filler - no more gaps or equivalent and use a paint scraper to taper and spread evenly. Hard setting fillers need sanding - and although low risk with proper gear for this location don't bother.
    Advice from me on this forum is general and for guidance based on information given by the member posing the question. Not to be used in place of professional advice from people appropriately qualified in the relevant field. All structural work must be approved and constructed to the BCA or other relevant standards by suitably licensed persons. The person doing the work and reading my advice accepts responsibility for ensuring the work done accords with the applicable law.

  33. #33
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    Well there ya go. I still haven't seen it though up here. Seems timber or AC cover strips were the go up here

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    Default Asbestos

    We have a 1978 hardy plank house - and that is all asbestos - it has plastic strips between planks - doesn't cause me any dramas living in an asbestos house though - just leave it alone and it will leave you alone. But recent bathroom reno - I took the opportunity to take the asbestos AC sheeting out and resheet with hardiflex. In 20 years time someone will probably say that is bad for you too.

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    Default Asbestos Ceiling

    Quote Originally Posted by Bloss View Post
    PVC strip joints well and truly in use before asbestos stopped in mid-80s. Certainly in early 70's, I think late '60s in Australia - US and Europe PVC extrusions were early 60s. So almost certainly asbestos sheets.

    In any case you could just use some acrylic filler - no more gaps or equivalent and use a paint scraper to taper and spread evenly. Hard setting fillers need sanding - and although low risk with proper gear for this location don't bother.

    Thanks to all who replied to my question about the Garage Asbestos Ceiling. I'll go with Bloss's suggestion and go over it with No More Gaps, and smooth it out as flat as I can. It's gotta look better than it does at the moment!

    Cheers,
    davewastech

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lawriet View Post
    We have a 1978 hardy plank house - and that is all asbestos - it has plastic strips between planks - doesn't cause me any dramas living in an asbestos house though - just leave it alone and it will leave you alone. But recent bathroom reno - I took the opportunity to take the asbestos AC sheeting out and resheet with hardiflex. In 20 years time someone will probably say that is bad for you too.

    It is bad for you. Silicosis is the new danger. You need to exercise just as much caution cutting new fibro with anything that creates dust.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ringtail View Post
    Well there ya go. I still haven't seen it though up here. Seems timber or AC cover strips were the go up here
    Maaaate! Qld again - none of that new-fangled plastic rubbish up here thanks . . .

    And yes - all dusts are dangerous - at the very least are not supposed to be inside your body.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bloss View Post
    Maaaate! Qld again - none of that new-fangled plastic rubbish up here thanks . . .

    And yes - all dusts are dangerous - at the very least are not supposed to be inside your body.

    You said it.

    PS, enjoy the weather down there today

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