Top 5 Dangers of DIY Asbestos Removal

The risks of removing asbestos yourself

The dangers of removing asbestos on your own

As everyone in the world knows, asbestos is extremely dangerous and hazardous to our health. However,  qualified professionals can remove asbestos safely.

Still despite the risks, some people want to remove asbestos in their houses by themselves. In some states in Australia, it is not legal to do it yourself. In the ACT, for example, ALL asbestos removal work MUST be done by a worker or company that is fully licensed.

Other states and territories, a person can remove non-friable asbestos if they are not licensed, but the area can be no bigger than 10 square metres.

An expert from Pro Asbestos Removal Melbourne talks about the top 5 dangers of DIY asbestos removal. Let’s explore them further below.

1. Asbestosis

What is it? It’s scarring of the lung tissue from the build-up from asbestos exposure. 

This then leads to reduced lung function and it can get to the point where for the person taking a single breath is a battle. As we know people can’t survive without oxygen. Luckily cases of asbestosis in Australia are extremely rare because the manufacture of products made from asbestos are banned in Australia since 2003.

2. Mesothelioma

This is the main health effect that exists today. T and is normally not detected until it is too late.

Unfortunately, people who have mesothelioma on average have around 6 months to live. Many health authorities suggest that just one asbestos fibre is significant enough to cause mesothelioma. There is more regarding DIY asbestos removal on the Greenlight site here.

3. Pleural disease

The pleura then widens, becomes stiff and can then fill with fluid when exposed to asbestos fibres. More regarding other asbestos-related risks and diseases can be found on the asbestos awareness website.

Asbestos fibres that become embedded in the lung tissue can irritate them. This can cause numerous diseases that take years to develop. Most become known about 10 years later and on average around 10-20 years after exposure. Others like mesothelioma can take anywhere up to 40 years to properly develop.

So if you are doing asbestos work yourself without the proper training and knowledge, you might think you are fine but the effects will not be known for years later. By that stage, it could already be too late.

Illness caused by asbestos exposure

4. Your family is at risk too.

If you are planning on removing asbestos from your house by yourself and not consult a professional company then you are going to make sure you are doing it right. Because you will be putting not only your health at risk but your family’s health too.

Keep that in mind because if you think you know best and try and remove it yourself and do not take the proper precautions. Then it will not be until years later when some asbestos-related diseases start to develop that you will realize the ramifications of removing asbestos by yourself.

5. Your neighbours could also be at risk.

The fibres are breathed in when dry asbestos is disturbed. If you are working with asbestos and you do not take all the proper guidelines seriously, some of those fibres can make their way next door to your neighbours and their children too. This is why professionals should use their guidelines and laws to limit exposure.


What if I accidentally break asbestos?

If you happen to break asbestos to limit any health risks, you should wipe up dust with a wet cloth. Then put the cloth into two plastic bags and put them in the rubbish.

Should I remove asbestos by myself?

You can but you shouldn’t. Doing it yourself provides greater risk to you and your family. If a professional comes in then their laws and guidelines will help greatly limit the risk. By doing so your health and your family’s health will remain untouched.

What precautions do I need to take?

Work in a well-ventilated area and take all the necessary precautions needed. For a full guideline of the safety measures, you need to take, contact your local council or government.


Hopefully, our article has given you some insight into the dangers of removing asbestos yourself. Just remember to reduce any risk to your health and your families, it is best to let the professionals do the work.