We're looking at purchasing a 78 year old home in old south London Ontario.
There is some whitish fibrous paper like material wrapped around the
original heating duct work. I am suspicious that it is asbestos. Does anyone
know if this was the practice of the day? The original furnace is long gone
and you can see where the transition between old and new duct work is. The
old duct work has this wrap in basement and up to registers. I am going to
have a sample analyzed but until then I'm curious if anyone has come across
this sort of thing.
Thanks for the confirmation. Paint sounds good. Would it be wrapped all the
way up through the walls do you think? I wonder how big of a job to have it
removed from say, 3 vertical risers ending on 2nd floor.
You are correct in your suspicion, and it'll be perfectly fine in
place as long as you leave it alone and don't cut it or otherwise
disturb the fibers. I lived with such wrapping on the heat ducts from
the octopus furnace in my 1910 house and had no problems. Go ahead
and paint it to further seal in the material.
Leave it alone unless there is a real good physical or safety reason to
remove it, like the insulation is breaking apart, or the duct is undersized
and must be replaced.
Asbestos is not a problem if it is intact. The removal process, no matter
how carefully done, will expose you to far more airborn fibers than you
would ever be exposed to if it were left alone.
"Never ascribe to malice what can equally be explained by incompetence."
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