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Alternatives to Asbestos

Considering everything we know today about the harmful effects of asbestos, it’s hard to imagine that asbestos was once considered a miracle building material. That is because asbestos really does have some amazing properties. But what alternatives to asbestos are available today that achieve the same desired benefit without the hidden dangers?

The alternatives to asbestos and why asbestos was so popular

At Myers Asbestos Removal, we are often asked what exactly made asbestos such a popular choice for home and building insulation? It was its unique properties, one of which was fire resistance. Asbestos is very difficult to burn. The slowing of any home or building fire made it ideal for fire safety. The fibrous structure of asbestos also made it very good for deadening sounds and noise insulation. Asbestos was also a poor conductor of heat, so it was very good as thermal insulation. But what is used today as an alternative for asbestos sheet insulation? Here is our list of the best alternatives to asbestos insulation.

Fibreglass Insulation

Fibreglass insulation is a common safe asbestos sheet alternative. It has also stood the test of time, as it was first introduced to the world in 1938. Fibreglass insulation comes in loose-fill form or insulation sheets. It is made up of very fine glass fibres that are spun or blown from molten glass. Fibreglass is moisture and fire resistant. These days, a lot of fibreglass insulation is sustainably sourced by being made from recycled glass containers.

Mineral Wool Insulation

Mineral wool, also known as Rock wool, is a kind of thermal insulation sheet that is made from spinning or drawing molten mineral rock. This is another asbestos sheet alternative that has a lot of the same benefits of asbestos but without the dangers. Just like the rocks that mineral wool is made from – it doesn’t burn well. This makes it fire resistant. It is also good at reducing noise and it’s an excellent choice as thermal insulation.

Cellulose Insulation

Cellulose insulation material is made up of natural fibres, such as newspaper, cotton, or straw. Cellulose insulation can come in sheets or be blown into place. One of the main benefits of this kind of insulation is the cost. It is one of the most affordable options on this list. Cellulose insulation is almost always made of recycled material, making it a sustainable alternative for asbestos sheet insulation. One thing to consider is that cellulose material is usually not fire resistant, which can make it sometimes impossible to use while being in compliance with the building regulations.

Polyurethane Insulation

Polyurethane insulation is commonly used as an insulation foam, but it also comes in insulation sheets that look like very large sponges. Polyurethane insulation foam is a mixture of two special chemicals that is sprayed on the inside of an outer wall by professional insulation installers. The foam can expand up to 100 times its original size, and the gas that fills the bubbles in the foam is a poor conductor of heat. Fire resistant chemicals are also added to Polyurethane insulation. This makes polyurethane one of the excellent alternatives to asbestos.

Polyisocyanurate Insulation

Polyisocyanurate is another polymer insulation, similar to Polyurethane Insulation. It comes in an expanding spray foam or in rigid boards. It is fire resistant and acts as a good thermal insulator. Polyisocyanurate has stronger molecular bonding than Polyurethane, so Polyisocyanurate foam and boards tend to be stronger and more rigid. This makes Polyisocyanurate an insulation to consider if strength and durability is one of your main concerns.

Out with the old insulation, in with the new insulation

Before you can use any of these newer and safer forms of insulation, you are going to need your old asbestos insulation removed. Asbestos removal is not a DIY project you can perform yourself on the weekend. It must be done by professionals. At Myers Asbestos Removal, we provide asbestos services Brisbane residents count on. Get in touch online for a FREE quote or call 0412 314 588 if you think may need asbestos removal services.

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