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Old 05-21-2009, 07:04 AM   #1
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Powerwashing asbestos siding

Hi all, I plan on painting my house which has asbestos siding. I'm going to wet and wash it as best as I can without disturbing it too much. My only problem lies on one side of the house which doesn't get much sun and has lots of mildew on it. I've tried scrubbing and a hose, but powewashing seems to be the only way to get rid of the mold, moss, green, etc. If I wear a quality mask will it be ok?? It will be constantly wet. Just curious.


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Old 05-22-2009, 10:41 AM   #2
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Mastic siding should be non-friable meaning that even if its broken it won't become airborne in large quantities as it is bonded with heavier minerals. If you were removing it wetting would be the right thing to do so you should be fine power washing it. If its crumbling already however I wouldn't power wash it.


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Old 05-22-2009, 05:17 PM   #3
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Asbestos is in fact not hazardous when wet
However, I suspect it's old enough to consider great care when PWing (as not to damage it)
I'd consider using one of the newer "eco-friendly/oxy" type mold/mildew/fungus removers
Technically not mildecides, as they don't "kill" mold, they do however make the roots of the mold (mildew, fungus) release from what they are clinging to (which even a mildecide or bleach doesn't do)
This allows the mold/mildew to be rinsed off with much less pressure (even a good garden hose spray may work well depending)

Though I can't say from personal (professional) experience (there are maybe 3 buildings with asbestos siding out here on Cape Cod, "The Land Of Rust And Mildew"), I'd absolutely try the Wash-Safe (made in my hometown...no I don't get a cut of sales, but have used it extensively on siding and roofs...who would know more about mold removal than a Cape Cod Company?...not many!...lol), or similar product, allow it to dwell (soak) properly, and use a light PW or hose to rinse it off
I'd opt for the "roof wash" product and mixture rather than the "siding" though
"Siding" out here usually means clapboards or shingles
A scrub while wet may be needed for some real tenacious mold

Although effective, the big benefit is that it is very eco-friendly compared to bleach or other mildecides
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