Asbestos siding was installed on many buildings in the U.S. in the 1940s and 1950s, including many homes and schools. This type of asbestos-containing product is usually in the form of shingles that are made of a mixture of asbestos and cement. The cement binds the fibers of asbestos, and even after the shingles have aged for decades, the shingles are generally not a danger if they are not deteriorating or damaged. However, many of these older buildings are in disrepair or are being demolished for various reasons.

Asbestos Embedded in Cement

The asbestos cement used to make asbestos shingle siding was invented in the early 1900s by the major, now bankrupt asbestos company Johns-Manville. The asbestos cement was first used for components such as chimneys and in roofs. Siding shingles with asbestos were a later invention.

Most of the asbestos house siding used in U.S. buildings have a type of asbestos called transite. The transite fibers won’t be released from the cement into the air unless the shingles are:

  • sawed
  • sanded
  • drilled
  • cut
  • broken

If Your Home Has Asbestos Siding

If your home has asbestos siding, it can be left as-is if it’s not in bad condition. Some contractors have misled homeowners into thinking that removing asbestos siding is necessary. This is not accurate.

If you’re considering an exterior renovation to your house, such as an addition, and it will require asbestos siding removal or cutting into asbestos siding, it’s best that you contact a certified asbestos-abatement contractor about it.

Encapsulating Asbestos Siding

Another option is to encapsulate asbestos siding. This process is often easier than removing asbestos siding. It is done by painting the siding with a masonry primer that contains latex, then putting on at least one coat of latex paint. The asbestos siding should not be sanded or scraped in this process; just washing with soap and water and then a water rinse before the primer coat is best.

Covering Asbestos Siding

Asbestos siding can also be covered with insulation board and then vinyl siding. The asbestos siding will then be protected from the aging and deterioration that might make it a hazard.

Find Out More about Asbestos Siding

If you’re concerned about asbestos siding and the diseases associated with asbestos, such as mesothelioma, contact a professional who handles asbestos siding removal.

If you are concerned that you have mesothelioma, contact a professional attorney at Mesothelioma Treatment Centers for further information. A qualified lawyer can walk you through your legal options, as well as discuss the treatment options available to you.

Asbestos Siding (English) / Apartadero de Asbesto (Spanish)