While most siding containing asbestos has been removed from public buildings due to health concerns, it may still be present on some older buildings and homes. Asbestos is a natural fibrous mineral used for insulation and fireproofing. When the fibers become airborne, they pose health concerns.
Recognizing Siding with Asbestos
Asbestos siding was manufactured to resemble many different materials, so it doesn’t always look the same. Look for a siding that is made to look like roof shingles. It is generally very brittle, and the back may be black and have the appearance of tar paper.
The siding may also contain asbestos if it is old with a wood-grain texture to resemble cedar. These shingles are generally 12 by 24 inches, and the bottom tends to have a wave-like pattern, though that is not always the case.
Testing Your Siding for Asbestos
If your siding fits either of these descriptions, you should consider having it tested. Many manufacturers made their products to look like asbestos-free products, so it is not really possible to determine if your siding contains asbestos just by looks.
You can easily send a sample to a lab is you suspect that it may contain asbestos. Look online for a lab near you to have a test performed on your siding and ensure the safety of your home and family.