Before the dangers of asbestos were known, it was used in building materials because it added strength, delivered fire resistance and provided heat insulation. Asbestos is a mineral fiber. These fibers are very small and can be released into the air. Being very small, asbestos fibers can also be inhaled easily and here is where the danger lies because prolonged exposure to asbestos has resulted in some very serious diseases. Among them are Asbestosis which causes fibrous tissue to scar the lungs and, Mesothelioma which is a type of cancer affecting the chest lining and abdominal cavity.
If the home you are planning to renovate was built during or before the 1970s and has not been touched since it's likely you will encounter asbestos. If you start to tear up flooring and walls, etc. you could release asbestos fibers into the air, producing a hazardous environment. So, what should you do before you begin renovations? Firstly, get the home inspected to find out if asbestos is present. If it is, you mustn’t try to remove it yourself, instead hire a company qualified to safely remove and dispose of it for you.