Renovators beware of asbestos risk

DIY enthusiasts and renovators must be mindful of the dangers associated with asbestos when completing their home improvement projects over the summer period, Master Builders has said.

As summer is a popular time to complete home projects, the warning is a timely reminder that about one third of all Australian houses contain asbestos and pose a potential health risk unless carefully managed.

Master Builders Australia acting chief executive officer Richard Calver said asbestos was widely used in building materials up until the mid-1980s and could be found in every room of some older houses.

"DIY and home renovation projects are obviously very popular," he said.

"However, home renovators and DIY enthusiasts should not downplay the importance of seeking professional advice to avoid disturbing asbestos in order to complete their projects safely. Asbestos is difficult to identify and, once disturbed and airborne, it can pose serious health risks. It is crucial to seek professional advice before starting your next home project."

Asbestos can be commonly found in roofs as loose fill insulation and corrugated cement roof tiles, floors as part of concrete, flooring underlay and adhesives, kitchen and bathroom splashbacks, tile products and adhesives, wall and ceiling products and gutters, downpipes and fences.

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