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Odd asbestos-containing materials found during building suveys

Odd asbestos-containing materials found during building suveys

Technical Chief - The Environmental InstituteTop Contributor
We have a lot of interest here in the odd materials we find during building surveys...especially those many might not always find even with much experience. If you have odd materials you've found that you can describe with how they were used...let's make a list so we can all benefit from the combined experiences.
  • Stephen
    Gheen Engineering
    Good topic! I'm always interested in expanding may knowledge and avoiding change orders. I'm not sure these qualify as odd materials, but they are often asbestos containing and I don't often see them in other consultant's reports: vapor barrier behind brick veneer; vapor barrier on the interior side of exterior walls behind plaster; gypsum roof deck (this is less often ACM, but I've found it on at least 3 roofs); mastic / vapor barrier below floor filler and flooring; and vapor barrier below terrazzo floors. I'm sure I've forgotten others.
    Tom Laubenthal, Jim Evans and 2 others like this
  • Jim Evans
    Senior Environmental Consultant at Watts Architecture & Engineering
    Tom, great topic! Thanks.
    Stephen, let me add bituminous waterproofing on concrete foundation walls below grade. We often expect it to be there, but rarely bring a shovel or backhoe to an asbestos survey. Are we noting in our reports that our survey excludes below grade materials? Hope so!

    How about built-up roofing UNDER concrete? We designed removal of built-up roofing on a concrete roof deck years ago. When removal was finished, the contractor showed us a surprise. The concrete was actually a repair, and was on top of another built-up roof on another concrete roof deck. Ouch, that was a heck of a change order.

    Transite breaker blocks for electrical circuits, and transite board behind electrical panels.

    Transite sandwiched between sheet metal for window infill panels - typical 1970s energy conservation measure of installing smaller windows in schools and offices, and filling the rest of the opening with these transite sandwiches.

    Electrical wire insulation or jacket. Not only in old buildings, but sometimes within 1950s to 1980s fluorescent light fixtures.

    Paper, or foil and paper, insulation above light bulbs in old incandescent light fixtures.
  • Tom Laubenthal
    Technical Chief - The Environmental Institute
    Top Contributor
    A friend involved with a building demo found elevator cars coated with a black sealant of some sort that was ~15% chrysotile (on the exterior of sides and rear metal panels). When the elevator cars we dismantled, a demo guy starting cutting through the door with a reciprocating saw only to find the door stuffed with perfectly layered corrugated asbestos paper insulation.
    Tony R., Yilmael D. like this
  • Jim Evans
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