Mineral Wool


Old 01-21-04, 12:03 PM
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Mineral Wool

I am in the process of renovating a couple of rooms in my house. Part of the process is ripping down some ceilings. The attic has ceiling has severely compressed mineral wool with a black paper vapor retarder. There apparently was a rodent problem as well. Found some turds and urine smell. My question are. Is this mineral wool dangerous to replace? Does it contain asbestos? I have tried to contain dust as best as I can and pretty much always wear a dust mask not a respirator. I always send my wife and young daughter out of the house for a couple of hours during demolition. Vacuum with a hepa filter and wet mop as well. Should I be concerned? The house was built in the mid sixties and located on East end of Long Island. I keep getting conflicting reports. I have done 2 rooms and the hall ceiling so far. Any thoughts most appreciated.
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Old 01-21-04, 03:46 PM
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In any dusty environment, the dust is the greatest component of any hazard. You seem to on top of that problem with a respirator and cleanup.

You would have to have the mineral wool tested at a lab to deteremine the presence of any asbestos.

Here is a link for consumers on the topic of asbestos.


Hope this helps.
Old 01-21-04, 03:50 PM
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Mineral wool (traditionally known as Rock and Slag wool) is a great insulator but other products are less costly due to manufacturing processes.

Your concerns are only natural but a home built in the mid 60's is one that I would not have any concern about health issues. In late 40's, it was known that problems were addressed on possible cancer causing issues.

As with any product capable of producing airborne dust, concerns regarding the health and safety effects of rock and slag wool are understandable. However, few materials have been studied as extensively as mineral wool. The weight of scientific research confirms that these materials are safe to manufacture, install and use when manufacturers' recommended work practices are followed.

Health and safety research on rock and slag wool has been ongoing for nearly 70 years. NAIMA member companies have invested tens of millions of dollars in research projects with leading independent laboratories and universities in the United States and abroad. This research has been designed to investigate the possible human health effects of rock and slag wool as well as other MMVFs.

Studies examining possible health effects and safe use of mineral wools have found no consistent association between exposure to rock and slag wool and respiratory disease or cancer in humans. The weight of the scientific evidence confirms that rock and slag wool are safe to manufacture, install and use when manufacturers' recommended work practices are followed.

Like skin irritation, upper respiratory irritation is a "mechanical" irritation to the fibers. The irritation will subside once the exposure is discontinued. Some people are more sensitive, some less, some not at all.

The key is to wear long sleeve shirts, respirators and eye protection. Fibers can be irritating but place air locks between working areas and the use of water mist is good. Bag it and seal it when removing from the working room.

Hope this helps!
Old 01-21-04, 04:19 PM
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Chfite, Excellent link-Thanks.

Doug, As always your advice and expertise is most appreciated.

You have helped me many times before. If you ever get out this way drop me a PM and I can repay you with a good meal and some "beverages" of your choice.

I guess I can get back to work with a clear mind, for now....

Old 01-23-04, 03:38 PM
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You're very welcome!

We all try and help and hopefully you'll be done soon. The stuff does irritate the skin but no problem.

Good Luck!
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