Asbestos Roof Removal and Asbestos Roof Replacement

Posted on: 26 January 2018


There was a time when asbestos roofs were the popular choice for many homeowners in various parts of the world. It is only recently, when the adverse effects of asbestos were discovered that it became unpopular and authorities began "asbestos control" measures.  For instance, it is in 2001 that the WorkSafe Western Australia authority designated asbestos as hazardous. This means that only roofers that have been licensed by WorkSafe are allowed to carry out any asbestos related work such as asbestos roof replacement, in Australia.

Due to the wide use of asbestos in the past, it is common to find many older buildings in different parts of Australia with corrugated asbestos roofs. These roofs are by now aging, and the outer skin of the sheet may begin to break down. This breaking may cause the release of dangerous asbestos fibres into the environment, which may compromise your health and that of your loved ones. Thus, roof removal and replacement are usually necessary in such circumstances.

Asbestos roof removal process

WorkSafe has laid down procedures to be used in the removal of asbestos roofs. These procedures are best carried out by licensed roofers, as this is a multi-stage complicated process. Here is a summary of some of the steps involved in asbestos roof removal:

  1. PVA glue is sprayed on the roof:  Because of the health risks posed by exposure to asbestos fibre, these roofs are usually coated with PVA glue which ensures that the asbestos fibres don't break free when being removed.
  2. Removal of fixings and installations: Screws, fixings, aerials, solar panels and hot water units are removed carefully in this step.
  3. Asbestos roof sheets are removed and lowered to the ground carefully by hand or using a mechanical lift.
  4. The sheets are carefully wrapped in an approved plastic enclosing, and taken to an approved asbestos waste site.
  5. The roof is cleaned and sprayed with PVA solution to get rid of any remaining asbestos fibres.

Asbestos roof replacement

Roof replacement can only be done after a successful completion of the asbestos roof removal process. The process of replacement begins with taking the roof's measurements, which will help determine the quantity of roofing materials needed. This step will also help make a price estimate of the entire roofing project depending on the roofing material you prefer, such as colourbond metal roofs or tiles.  Professional roofers will also ensure that the underlying roofing structure is sound before placing a new roof on the structure.