Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Where is asbestos found in buildings?

Asbestos-containing materials were used until 1999 for a wide range of construction purposes in new and refurbished buildings including the following:

  • sprayed asbestos and loose asbestos packing were used as fire breaks in ceiling voids
  • hand moulded or pre-formed coatings and lagging were used as thermal insulation for pipes and boilers
  • sprayed asbestos and asbestos in a cement matrix were used as fire protection in ducts, firebreaks, panels, partitions, soffit boards, ceiling panels and around structural steel work
  • sprayed asbestos and board materials were used for sound proofing in walls and ceilings, usually as a coating or as tiles
  • asbestos cement products included corrugated roofing sheets, corrugated sheets for wall cladding, gutters, rainwater pipes and water tanks
  • millboard, paper and paper products containing asbestos were used for the insulation of electrical equipment, and as sandwich or backing materials - eg on wood veneers or linoleum
  • asbestos fibres were woven into ropes and cloths - eg fire blankets and heat resistant gloves
  • asbestos was used in textured coating, decorative plasters and paints - eg 'Artex' type finishes and cornices

HSE: Where can you find asbestos?

Return to Asbestos topic landing page

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