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\"...vermiculite insulation may contain asbestos.\"

rb_6 Member Posts: 222
from Health Canada...

Vermiculite Insulation Containing Asbestos

"Some vermiculite insulation may contain asbestos fibres. These products can cause health risks if disturbed during maintenance, renovation or demolition. However, there is currently no evidence of risk to your health if the insulation is sealed behind wallboards and floorboards, isolated in an attic, or otherwise kept from exposure to the interior environment."



  • Joe_38
    Joe_38 Member Posts: 5
    vermiculite plus asbestos

    My father passed away twenty three years ago from what the Docs thought was asbestosis. However they could not find any link in his life to asbestos. Five to ten years ago it was discovered that a vermiculite mine had asbestos in it. Contaminated a whole town. Vermiculite is great for plants. My father potted plants as a youngster in a green house for eight years or so. The potting soil contained vermiculite. Which may have contained asbestos.
  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
    Good one rb

    a couple others,

    Old plaster may be arsenic laden! Seems years ago the tannerys used a lime/ arsenic slurry to soften and remove the hair from the hide. Tannery workers often developer "blackfoot disease" from exposure to this product.

    These lime "cakes" were often used to mix plaster. A Delaware engineer with an enviromental firm Tetra Tech is looking into the old tannery sites. According to an article in JLC

    Also there may be lead in old cermic tile glaze.

    If you demo either of these products with hammers, etc it would be wise to use approved safety equipment. Eye wear and respirators.

    hot rod

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  • rb_6
    rb_6 Member Posts: 222
    Oh more great news...geesh

    Hot Rod,

    Tonight I'm going to lie awake creating an inventory list of all the projects I've done without mask inhaling vermiculite and plaster dust- add in the concrete dust from coring and sawing, mix in a little form release oil from days as a cribber, then throw in the cement, sulfur and bitumen fumes from days as a geo lab tech - and to soak it all up is the years of inhaling sawdust ... OH YEA the elixir of life - the killer construction cake...

    Instead of counting sheep I'll count how many days I've got left!

    Zippdiddy do da...now where's that bottle of Scotch I've been saving...
  • Mark Eatherton1
    Mark Eatherton1 Member Posts: 2,542
    I'll drink to that!!

    I've always wondered what was in that 100 year old dust lying around on the pipes of these old systems. It's black, so I'm probably OK, right... RIGHT!?!?

    HACK HACK HACK, splootooey...

    Then, there was the time I was up to my elbows in PVC cement, eating a PB&J sandwich, and made the mistake of reading the label on the can ov PVC cement, "known carcinogen". Made me so nervous I had to light up a cigarette...

    If one doesn't get me than the other will...

  • Do a web search on Libby

    WR Grace in Libby MT......... new superfund site due to vermiculite mining and asbestos. Even the kids are getting asbestosis.
  • Boiler Guy
    Boiler Guy Member Posts: 585
    How about the years

    with my head in a cloud of dust over a pail of asbestos shorts, mixing the plaster to apply to the boiler. Great hand cleaner though. At least I didn't smoke and the rum washed the dust down. Hmmmmmmm sweet dreams
  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
    What gets me these days

    is the dust (saw dust) when cutting OSB or plywood. Something in the glues or treatments in that stuff gets me sneezing and hacking.

    Concrete dust is a bad one. not only the silica but the "dust" in the fly ash they blend with has all sorts of crap in it. The same stuff that blows out the stacks of a coal fired plant ends up in that concrete mix!

    Time for an office job :) Now where is my mold detector and IAQ tester.

    hot rod

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  • Boiler Guy
    Boiler Guy Member Posts: 585
    BIG 10 - 4

  • ScottMP
    ScottMP Member Posts: 5,884
    This is the stuff

    Thats scares the hell out of.

    I used to dismantle old snowman boiles for my old boss. He would laugh at me whne I would ask for a paper filter mask, what did I know.

    Ya, dust, dirt, fumes, chemicals, I was always the one who would go right in.

    I have my lungs x-rayed as often as I can to keep a sharp eye out. Like thats going to help.

    Thanks guys, one more reason to lie awake at night.


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  • Bob Harper
    Bob Harper Member Posts: 1,035
    osb glues

    Usually either a urea formaldehyde resin or a phenolic resin--either of which can cause the symptoms you describe.
  • Mike Reavis_2
    Mike Reavis_2 Member Posts: 307
    engaging in \"Gallows Humor\" are we?

    Just in case you need a definition:

    Gallows Humor is comedy that makes light of death, or other very serious matters. It is similar to black comedy but differs in that it is made by the person affected.

    Mercutio is stabbed in a swordfight.


    Courage, man; the hurt cannot be much.

    No, 'tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a church-door; but 'tis enough,'twill serve: ask for me to-morrow, and you shall find me a grave man.
  • Mike T., Swampeast MO
    Mike T., Swampeast MO Member Posts: 6,928

    Yikes! That one actually bothers me a bit. Have torn out many, many plaster walls around here and nearly all have hair in the scratch coat. There was also a big local leather tannery back then. At least I [usually] wear a dust mask or simple respirator when taking out whole rooms...

    Cement board dust seems especially nasty. Extremely fine--to fine for my dust collection system and it hangs in the air seeming forever. I try to cut it outdoors on windy days.
This discussion has been closed.