About Asbestos | Asbestech Laboratory in Sacramento, CA
What is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a mineral fiber. It is mined just like any other mineral. The fibers are heat resistant, resistant to chemical attack, have excellent tensile strength and have high electrical resistance. These properties make asbestos a useful material for electrical and thermal insulation. It was often added to building materials for this reason. There are several types of asbestos; the most common are chrysotile, amosite, and crocidolite.
Asbestos and Indoor Air
The main source of asbestos in indoor air is insulation products. Buildings built in the last 70 years used a variety of materials composed of asbestos mixed with other fibers like paper, fiberglass, or synthetic fibers and a binder, usually lime or gypsum mortar. The most commonly reported material in California homes is the cottagecheese ceiling insulation. Other common materials include vinyl floor tiles, patching compounds and textured paints, furnace, stove and pipe insulation, stove door gaskets, some roofing shingles and siding material, and parts of some pre-1979 appliances (e.g. toasters, clothes dryers, hair dryers).