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Yeah, try pick at the edge of it with a knife. Asbestos is not hard and will come off as a fibrous flake. Painted wood would be hard. Maybe they cut the hole too big when installing the boots and needed to shim it up.

Take the flake and add a drop of water. Asbestos will turn to mush, wood won't.
 

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One tiny flake won't hurt you as long as you don't inhale it. Once asbestos is wet it is safe. If you are concerned about it paint it and encapsulate it. They do that on old boilers and pipes that are covered with it in power plants etc. Paint it with latex paint and forget about it.

Kinda looks suspicious to me. Could be the original owner was in the biz or concerned about fire hazard and had a asbestos fibreboard installed between the pipes and the wood. Little did he know those pipes can never get hot enough to start a fire but some people like to be cautious.

We have to leave 1" clearance above the furnace plenum for fire seperation but in my over 35 yrs in this biz I have never heard of a fire caused by too hot pipes. If you had a oil furnace and it got flooded with oil and caught fire it is remotely possible but I have never heard of it happening. I had one catch on fire but it still did not get the pipes red hot. Chimney pipe, yes, heat pipes no.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
One tiny flake won't hurt you as long as you don't inhale it. Once asbestos is wet it is safe. If you are concerned about it paint it and encapsulate it. They do that on old boilers and pipes that are covered with it in power plants etc. Paint it with latex paint and forget about it.

Kinda looks suspicious to me. Could be the original owner was in the biz or concerned about fire hazard and had a asbestos fibreboard installed between the pipes and the wood. Little did he know those pipes can never get hot enough to start a fire but some people like to be cautious.

We have to leave 1" clearance above the furnace plenum for fire seperation but in my over 35 yrs in this biz I have never heard of a fire caused by too hot pipes. If you had a oil furnace and it got flooded with oil and caught fire it is remotely possible but I have never heard of it happening. I had one catch on fire but it still did not get the pipes red hot. Chimney pipe, yes, heat pipes no.
Awesome, paint seems to be the best way to go then. Most of it is going to be covered by a new ceiling, but it is exposed in our laundry room.

Any suggestions on type of paint? Gloss, etc?
 

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I would get some brown latex so it blends in with the wood color. Oil based sounds sketchy and it stinks and is more expensive I believe. You probably could spray paint it with a high temp Rustoleum or Tremclad paint but then you got to breath those nasty fumes in. I have seen them covered and painted but did not ask abut the paint type as I was not there at the time.:wink2:

Google how to seal asbestos and see if there is advice on the net about encapsulating it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just for anyone that finds this thread in the future: I had guys come and test it, and it was 60% asbestos material. Had it removed professionally, and now we just hope we're not in trouble after living in the house for a couple years.
 
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