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Old 03-13-2008, 12:01 PM   #16
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


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THE SKY IS FALLING!!!




Your attorney thanks you.
You'll think the sky is falling in 10 years if, god forbid, your wife or kids come down with a lung disease. You'll be wondering if YOU caused it by doing something irresponsible by sawzalling pipe insulation. If you think holding your breath helped, then realize that microscopic asbestos dust can remain airborne for months, and when it settles on a surface it can become airborne over again when disturbed. And a T-shirt pulled over your face hardly qualifies as a filtering device. Asbestos was and still is an excellent insulator. It is a naturally occuring element. Everyone breathes a certain amount of fibres during thier lifetime. If the material is in good condition, the best thing you can do is leave it in place and encapsulate it or protect it. Wrap it with something if you have to work around it temporarily. If you are going to work in an area that you suspect may have residual dust present, wear at least a well fitting half mask respirator with P100 cartridges. Wet down dust with soapy water. The soap doesn't make the dust "stick" together, it breaks the surface tension of the water and allows it to penetrate better. And don't hand your dusty clothes to your wife to clean. That was one of the problems with shipyard and construction workers. They wore their dirty clothes home so thier wives and kids could be exposed to the same risks they had at work. If you've ever seen asbestos fibres under a microscope you'll know that they are shaped like irregular splinters with barbs and hooks on them. The same qualities that allow them to stick together so well to make certain products is what makes them especially dangerous, in that once they stick to lung tissue they won't dislodge. Since the body can't dissolve them, it begins to encapsulate them as they are an irritant. If you are lucky the encapsulation process won't turn cancerous, but it can lead to asbestosis. Most people I've run into are poorly informed about asbestos. They tend to think that since it doesn't make you sick immediately that the danger is over rated or that it is something produced by the devil himself. Respect it and it won't bite you. I hate to see someone hurt themselves because of thier ignorance. I hate even more to see someone pass thier ignorance and arrogance along. I'll get off of my soapbox now.
P.S. I'm certified as an asbestos contractor/supervisor for over 10 years.

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Old 03-13-2008, 12:58 PM   #17
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


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You'll be wondering if YOU caused it by doing something irresponsible by sawzalling pipe insulation.

That was one of the problems with shipyard and construction workers. They wore their dirty clothes home so thier wives and kids could be exposed to the same risks they had at work.
No, I am obviously not stupid enough to sawzall through the stuff, give me SOME credit.

Here you go.....ship yard workers.....insulation sprayers.....pipe fitters and insulators......people working with it ALL day all the time.
This equates to bar tenders never smoking a cigarette in their lives, yet coming down with lung cancer due to smoke inhalation.

It's the chicken little folks who make regular folks think that if they even look at the stuff they will instantly get cancer.



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P.S. I'm certified as an asbestos contractor/supervisor for over 10 years.
So you have a vested stake ($$$$$$) in making sure folks are aware of how dangerous it is. Just like the lawyers and insurance folks.
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Old 03-13-2008, 05:08 PM   #18
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


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Wow! Seems like I hit on a sensitive issue!
I have been living in this house a long time. I'm 52 now, but who knows.
I never got close to the pipe wrapping, knowing well that it might contain asbestos.
I figured best thing was to leave it alone, and it didn't seem to be falling apart.

I will follow your advice and spray with soapy water, and wear the respirator.
So far I have seen it only on small areas of pipe, not along the entire length.
Perhaps the previous owner removed what was there. The vast majority of our pipes are clean.

About how much can kill you; I think it's kind of like smoking. Some can smoke for an entire lifetime and never get cancer, while others who smoked as kids and quit get cancer in their 50's.

When I was a kid we lived in a house that had asbestos shingles. We replaced many of them, having to cut them with a hacksaw. It was always outdoors, so I am sure the risk is lower, but if we had known then what we know today, no one would have worked with the stuff.
Our current home has asbestos shingles too, but we haven't touched anything.

Thanks for the heads-up on asbestos inspection when selling the home.

FW
how much can kill you.....well if you are unlucky 1 fibre..if you are lucky..it will never hurt you if you breath a bushel of it

in your home if it is undisturbed and left in your attic you will be safe

if you have real concerns, read about this stuff, that is the best thing to do...just like everything else you attempt...your own wiring...your own building...you wouldn't (i dont think) tackle these jobs without some prior knowledge or study....treat your asbestos the same...you have now been told by someone besides me this stuff CAN be dangerous....so now it is up to you to see how dangerous it can be

i will tell you this..worst case...if you were in your attic and walked on the rafters and they were covered with asbestos..you have allready put fibres in the air...on your clothes and in your hair...you dont have to see dust to be contaminated (even a little) the fibres are so small (1000 times thinner than a human hair) just brushing against them can send them into the air...now you wear your resperator..and do your work lifting the asbestos batts and replacing them carefully..job done and you are fine....you crawl back downstairs. and throw your itchy clothes in the hamper... (they are contaminated) ..your wife picks them up and gives them a shake before throwing them in the washer..she has now released some into the air..she may inhale a few....your toddler runs in to see what mommy is doing..she inhales a few too....life goes on...you are now 70 years old..healthy as a horse never a problem....your wife is still right beside you also healthy..but you are now both standing with your grand kids at the side of your 50 year old daughters grave..she died from asbestos, and as far as you know...she has never been near the stuff!....i hope this never happens but that is how asbestos can work.....you can suck in a barrel and never have a complication..or you can breath one fibre and in 25 or even 50 years it can kill you


if you choose to work haphazardly around this stuff with no concerns remember,,,the life you take may not be your own!...be careful out there
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Old 03-24-2008, 10:14 AM   #19
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


As far as I know, the only place I will find any asbestos in my home is on the heating pipes, and that has mostly been removed way before we bought the house 35 years ago.
The only that remains is wrapped around some of the pipes in the basement where they go up into the walls.

In the attic, we have bats of fiberglass insulation. I know that's what it is because I put it there. I hope fiberglass doesn't prove to be as dangerous as asbestos, or we're all in trouble, as we use the attic for storage, and some of the bats are falling down now.

We have Rockwool blown into the upstairs walls and between the joists of the attic floor.
I only hope that when the asbestos was removed from the pipes in the basement that it was done properly. When we bought the house in 1972, there were no laws about asbestos.

FW
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Old 03-29-2008, 03:56 PM   #20
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


Hi,

There appears to be a mixture of speculation, flippancy and hysteria connected with this subject, this is typical when dealing with asbestos.

Each case and the risks associated need to be looked at on an individual basis.

Yes asbestos is dangerous however the amount of exposure will be linked to the type of asbestos, condition, activity, location and duration of the work being carried out.

Most laymen will not recognise the majority of asbestos products, over 500 have been used here in the UK, I suspect many of the same ones used in North America.

The best advice is simple, do not disturb suspected products, get them tested or have a survey. You can then make an informed decision.

Apart from the obvious health effects spreading asbestos around your home will cost much more to clean up than removing it in-situ in say the basement. I have seen 3000 asbestos removal projects escalate to 200,000 on professional sites.

Good luck
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Old 03-30-2008, 06:41 AM   #21
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


As I type this post, there are thousands of Australians dying of asbestosis. A large percentage of these people are/were not people who worked in an industry that used asbestos products. These people were "home renovators". There was one tragic story on telly about a woman who recently died from Asbestosis. She only helped her husband cut asbestos sheets (for their house) for 2 days. 20 years later, she fell ill.

Go and find an Australian & ask them about asbestos. They will not tell you things like "you'll be ok if you don't work with it all the time". They'll probably say, "Don't go near that stuff unless you know what you are doing."

Quite simply, ANY amount of asbestos dust is bad. Smart people will adopt a zero tolerance for any kind of asbestos dust.
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Old 03-30-2008, 10:18 AM   #22
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


We jump in our automobiles every day and zip off to work or shopping or even (heaven forbid) to the local bar for a few beers. We thing nothing of it at all. We put on a seat belt to protect us.

Some of us here are working electricians. Go find some movies about "arc flash." If we were like some of the chicken littles around here, no electrical work would get done at all.

But some are petrified of things like asbestos. This makes no sense to me. There are lots of things in this world that can "get you." No one every made it out of this world alive.

My uncle worked in an factory that used asbestos. He said the air in the shop was thick with the dust. No masks or respirators were even thought of back in those bad old days. When the big scare hit, he worried a lot about asbestosis. He was obsessed with it for a few years. He lived to old age, had both legs amputated, and eventually died, due to diabetes. My point is, he worried himself about the wrong thing.

Be aware of the hazard, take proper precautions, use approved methods for dealing with it.
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Old 03-30-2008, 03:22 PM   #23
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


[quote=jrclen;
Be aware of the hazard, take proper precautions, use approved methods for dealing with it.[/quote]

the above statement says it all...and all the "chicken littles" have have told you the hazards with asbestos

one fibre if you inhale it and it makes it to your lungs...will NEVER be expelled from your lung...if you are LUCKY and it stays in one place and your body makes a growth over it and it doesnt turn to cancer you will not die from it

if however that one fibre does not hook into your lung wall and stay but moves around in your lung and causes all those tiny little marks on your lungs lining and then they turn to scar tissue you still may not die from any cancer..your lungs will just continue to make scar tissue and they will not be able to supply any oxegen to your blood..as the scar tissue grows your air capacity dwindles untill you die a slow painful death of suffocation

or your body could react as many do and the growth from that one fibre can turn cancerous....the end

as you have said...be aware of the hazards...take proper precautions...use the approved methods of dealing with it

that is all that us "chicken littles" have been trying to tell you..it is dangerous...one fibre may... or may not kill you....
it is the "may" part you should pay attention too
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Old 03-30-2008, 06:42 PM   #24
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


How do some of you get by every day??? Worried about ONE fiber? You know how many things in this life MAY harm you?????????

I bet you are all the same folks who go/went to bars wher the smoke hung thick and you cam home smelling like you just smoked three packs. Or how about the ones who DID/DO smoke two or three packs a day. HOW can you live with all those cancerous smoke molecules in your lungs??????



Gee, billie, it's really curious how you conveniently left all the other parts out about how folks dealt with this stuff EVERY DAY for YEARS and never got sick, nor did their families get sick.
This whole thing is typical of anything that is done to excess for LONG periods of time. If you deal with certain things every day for years chances are those things will have an effect on you or your health.
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Old 03-30-2008, 08:31 PM   #25
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


I just can't help but wonder if all the tiny little fibers can become so airborne how much is being blown out into the neighborhood when i turn on my whole house fan and it blows through the attic and out the gable vents? Are people polluting the entire neighborhood when this happens?
Believe me, I am in NO way trying to start anything by this but it makes me think. If there is so much talk about 1 fiber causing hell for people isn't there a great chance that your breathing at least 1 per day from some kind of source?
i have a boatload in my attic I'm sure because the house was built in 65 and the insulation says Johns Manville on it. Wonderful, I thought the first time I saw it, now I wonder. I mean we store things up there and go up and down a few times a year. I'm assuming we are disturbing and kicking this up every time. Then I turn on the whole house fan during the summer and that blows right up into the attic creating a huge draft which goes right out the gable vents.

Wonder how many other houses are like this all over the world??
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Old 03-30-2008, 08:33 PM   #26
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How do some of you get by every day??? Worried about ONE fiber? You know how many things in this life MAY harm you?????????

I bet you are all the same folks who go/went to bars wher the smoke hung thick and you cam home smelling like you just smoked three packs. Or how about the ones who DID/DO smoke two or three packs a day. HOW can you live with all those cancerous smoke molecules in your lungs??????



Gee, billie, it's really curious how you conveniently left all the other parts out about how folks dealt with this stuff EVERY DAY for YEARS and never got sick, nor did their families get sick.
This whole thing is typical of anything that is done to excess for LONG periods of time. If you deal with certain things every day for years chances are those things will have an effect on you or your health.
i did say in an earlier post that you could breath a bushel of the stuff and never have a reaction petey..and then i also said you could breathe in one fibre and get sick or die from it..and i will agree that a one time exposer may not harm you (that is the scary part..may not) the part you dont seem to understand or want to argue on is that a one time exposer can kill you.... if you were to read up and learn about this stuff you may see that is is much more dangerous than you seem to believe..

as for your cigerette smoke i guess it can work the same way ..if you search the net you can find medical facts that link smoking and 1200 deaths per day in the USA..this is a small number of actual smokers and you seem to think that is ok by your last post...i am glad i, at least dont have to take that risk and i treat smokes as i do asbestos..i try to keep away from it ..i know there are many things that can kill us through our lungs besides cigarette smoke and asbestos but i choose to at least to illiminate these two

i did not want the original question poster to take this stuff lightly (as it seems you do) so i posted the gravest dangers to him in hopes that he would investigate on his own and learn about it..and i see others have posted after me ..some agreeing and some (like you) disagreeing makes for a good informational discussion

i see you related asbestos to working on electricity..well i bet you would not work on high voltage lines while hot without the proper protection...i hope .. becasue you learned not to do it from books or teaching..but if you did and had an "arcflash" and got away with it you would chalk it up to experience and not likely do it again...there is a big difference between this and asbestos...when you work with asbestos hap hazardly and get exposed...it may be too late for a second chance..the damage (fibres in your lungs) may allready be present

in closing i would like to make it clear..i will agree with you that long time exposer does increase your risk...but..i still stick to my original post that a one time exposer is a lower risk.. but can and has lead to many breathing disorders...asbestosis...mesothelioma..and cancer

if you are going to play in this stuff..LEARN all you can before you start
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Old 03-30-2008, 09:07 PM   #27
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Asbestos concern when wiring old house


OK, now you got ME thinking. Gezz. Did they ever put this stuff in plaster? The plaster I am working with right now (my home) is from the 1920s, and it looks like a stucco finish, really thick. Please say it wasn't ever used in plaster?
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Old 03-30-2008, 09:29 PM   #28
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OK, now you got ME thinking. Gezz. Did they ever put this stuff in plaster? The plaster I am working with right now (my home) is from the 1920s, and it looks like a stucco finish, really thick. Please say it wasn't ever used in plaster?
it may well be in 1920s plaster..i dont know how much and i dont know how often..and i cant say for sure your's has it...but i am sure some on this site would say go ahead knock it off..sweep 'er up and go on with your life..something is going to kill you someday anyway

i would say treat it with respect...take a small piece (handled safely) and have it tested (i have read tests are done for 20 or 30 bucks)..then you can make an informed decision on how to proceed

i have also read that some plaster can contain from 6 to 20 percent asbestos

i dont want you to be as petey has called me ..a chicken little ..the sky is falling...kind of guy..but please do get some education on this stuff..and get your plaster tested ..you may find it has none and i hope that is what you find...but if you find it has asbestos in it you can also find out how to proceed with your alterations in a safe manner

good luck
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Old 03-31-2008, 09:44 AM   #29
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Worry and stress will kill you too. Medical fact. No IFs involved.
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Old 03-31-2008, 11:03 AM   #30
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Worry and stress will kill you too. Medical fact. No IFs involved.
And a LOT quicker than asbestos will.

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