Is It Possible To Find Asbestos In Fire Doors?
Most people have heard of asbestos before. However, it is typically in relation to people developing lung cancer. Before it was known to be a deleterious and harmful substance, it was once regarded as the best insulator on the planet. It was used in many different capacities including in the production of concrete, drywall boards, and certainly for insulation. It could also be located in the oven mitts that you used when cooking your food and even the clothing that you would wear. If there are fire doors at your facility, such as at a school, you may wonder if asbestos is in the doors. Let's discuss if this is possible and then how you can remove it so that it cannot cause any potential damage.
Was Asbestos Used In Fire Doors?
Older fire doors were often constructed of a solid timber frame, yet those made of solid metal with a hollow interior were much more common. It may have included the use of fire-resistant glass which was typically installed in an opening near the top to provide visibility. However, on the inside of these doors, especially those that were used with treated metal, asbestos was often used. It is an exceptional material when it comes to resisting heat which is why it was used prolifically up until the 1980s.
Why Is Asbestos Fire Resistant?
When you look at this mineral in nature, especially fibers tremolite asbestos, it almost looks like long flowing hairs. This is because it is a silicate material that is composed of fibrous crystals that can take on this appearance. It is the layering of these crystalline structures, woven together, that creates a natural insulator that can be used to resist fire very easily. It was because of this that contractors would use this naturally occurring silicate which was very cost-effective to mine, process, and use for a wide range of applications.
Why Is Asbestos Dangerous?
This material is dangerous for the same reason that it is so incredibly useful. The microscopic fibrils from which the silicate material is composed can break off very easily. It is a very fragile rock, one that must be handled with care, otherwise, it can break apart and release these lightweight fibers that will float. When people are exposed to these fibers consistently, this is when problems can occur. Therefore, if it is in the fire doors that you have, which is likely because they were constructed decades ago. You will need to have a professional asbestos abatement team come out to your location to run a few tests.
What Is The Easiest Way To Get Rid Of It?
One of the fortunate things about fire doors that have asbestos is that they are extremely easy to remove. You simply work with a contractor to come in, replace the doors, and then it is gone. Even better, the asbestos is on the inside of the metal casing of the door, which means exposure has likely never occurred. You simply need to know if it is there, and if it is, remove it in case the door is ever damaged which could release these dangerous fibers.
If you want to verify if your fire doors have asbestos, you will want to consider having an abatement team come out. These are companies that are ubiquitous, businesses that are constantly doing work on thousands of buildings worldwide, and one of them will likely be in an area near you. Although fire doors with as best as are not immediately dangerous, they do have the potential for causing damage later on. Simply have someone come into doing a test, and if it is there, remove it immediately to replace it with another fire door that is safe.