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Really worried about Artex
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# 1
melbury
Old 05-08-2006, 1:58 PM
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Default Really worried about Artex

It is only recently that I have heard about asbestos being in Artex. Our house was built in 1988 and every ceiling - even the garage - is artexed. Not nice smooth discreet patterns, but giant icicle like things, very painful when you knock against it.

Over the past few years as we redecorate, my husband has been scraping off as much as he possibly can to give a smoother finish - as we HATE it - totally oblivious to the fact that he could have been breathing in something dangerous.

Does anyone know how much it costs to get it tested and indeed who you would contact to get such a test? OH's view is that he doesn't really want to know if it contains asbestos because it is too late now, but I am so worried about it.

Any advice would be appreciated.
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# 2
Jorgan
Old 05-08-2006, 2:11 PM
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I thinks its generaly older Artex that contains asbestos, remember there are different types of asbestos, not all are considered dangerous. Many people will skim over the Artex to get a smooth ceiling, its easier than trying to chip the stuff off.
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# 3
melbury
Old 05-08-2006, 2:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jorgan
I thinks its generaly older Artex that contains asbestos, remember there are different types of asbestos, not all are considered dangerous. Many people will skim over the Artex to get a smooth ceiling, its easier than trying to chip the stuff off.
Since posting here I have been checking out some websites and it does say that it was being used into the 1990's!! Just wish I hadn't heard about it, ignorance is bliss!!
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# 4
FirstClassMale
Old 05-08-2006, 3:08 PM
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The GARAGE????!!

I honestly thought we had it bad in that most of our house had it everywhere. It had even been used on the "lie ins" of the upstairs bedrooms. The trouble was that it had been a DIY botch by the previous owners. It hung irregularly and some peaks were as long as six inches!

Luckily, if you can say that, we had a leak on our top landing so, being an insurance job, specimens were taken off to be analysed. It was all clear and they were able to do the work quite quickly.

The point I'm trying to make is that it is possible your ceilings were artexed more recently than when the place was built and, by the sounds of it, by an over enthusiastic DIYer. It's quite likely it doesn't contain asbestos but if you try your local authority website they may have details for environmental health that will do the test for about thirty quid.
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# 5
FirstClassMale
Old 05-08-2006, 3:10 PM
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Incidentally, as you will know, with the wedding cake icing type of Artex, even if it is being skimmed over, you will still need to chip off the peaks first
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# 6
dc
Old 05-08-2006, 3:26 PM
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In 1988 Asbestos was a well known hazard, so I doubt if yours will contain it. There were many Artex copies too, together with own-brand vesions.

Grinding/sanding it off can be very dusty, and soul destroying. The best method I have used, was to use a heat gun (paint remover type) and scraper as the version used in our house, became very plasticky when heated. The next not so dusty method is to chop off the largest points and then skim it, to smooth it off. I believe even Artex sell a smoothing compound to do just that. Usually artex is used to cover up all sorts of nasties.
Another alternative is to rip it all out together with the sub plaster or plasterboard, and replace it. Plasterboard is quite cheap, plastering an art.

HTHs dc
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# 7
Nile
Old 05-08-2006, 3:54 PM
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Hello melbury

I'm hoping that nelly, who is a plastering expert, will be along shortly to give his opinion.

Kind Regards

Nile
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# 8
ben500
Old 05-08-2006, 4:04 PM
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Genenerally buildings artexed since 1985 are not tested for asbestos but there have been cases where artexed used after this has been found to contain chrysotile fibres, the risk is minimal whilst the artex is in situ, it is only when the fibres become airborne that a risk is posed and then again very small, but to be safe you should have it tested, the cost can vary depending on where you are in the country but should be under £100, £65-£75 is about average for a single sample with a nominal fee for further samples around £12-£18 per additional sample, if positive then controlled removal is advised which is very expensive, around £1,100 for an average 15sqm room, more if it is applied to walls and stair bulkheads etc, as a previous poster has said in the event you had cause to claim for escape of water or accidental damage to the decor the insurance company would arrange and bear the costs of testing any and all artex coated surfaces they would be working on, this is to comply with their "duty of care" even if your claim is invalid they still have a duty to advise you of the results at no cost to yourself.
HTH

I would say it is unwise to remove such material yourself unless you can be positive it is free from asbestos which you obviosly cannot in this case, these fibres if they become airborne will hang around for years for you and your family to inhale, if you have a positive test the air will be tested before the environmental removal company leave when doing the removal.

Last edited by ben500; 05-08-2006 at 4:07 PM.
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# 9
ben500
Old 05-08-2006, 4:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nile
Hello melbury

I'm hoping that nelly, who is a plastering expert, will be along shortly to give his opinion.

Kind Regards

Nile
I acknowledge Nelly is indeed a plasterer he has said so many times, but I think his expertise may lie more in getting plastered I've seen his posts! But I haven't seen any walls he's worked on
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# 10
melbury
Old 05-08-2006, 4:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FirstClassMale
The GARAGE????!!

I honestly thought we had it bad in that most of our house had it everywhere. It had even been used on the "lie ins" of the upstairs bedrooms. The trouble was that it had been a DIY botch by the previous owners. It hung irregularly and some peaks were as long as six inches!

Luckily, if you can say that, we had a leak on our top landing so, being an insurance job, specimens were taken off to be analysed. It was all clear and they were able to do the work quite quickly.

The point I'm trying to make is that it is possible your ceilings were artexed more recently than when the place was built and, by the sounds of it, by an over enthusiastic DIYer. It's quite likely it doesn't contain asbestos but if you try your local authority website they may have details for environmental health that will do the test for about thirty quid.

We moved into the house when it was new, so it definitely wasn't an over-enthusiastic DIYer. I just can't understand why they the builders went so beserk with the artexing, it is just everywhere. We have sloping ceilings on the landing with giant points of artex sticking out - it is very hazardous. There was obviously no need to use it to cover cracks etc, as the house was new and so presumably the ceilings would have been nice and smooth.

I am worried though about the amount of scraping off OH has down over the years, it just never occurred to us that artex was dangerous.
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# 11
nelly
Old 05-08-2006, 4:52 PM
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To be honest I havent got a sodding clue, wheather it will or wont contain asbestos. My job is generally to skim over artex.

The reason artex was used so much was, it's fast and cheap, plastering a ceiling takes 2 1/2 to 3 hours give or take. But artexing can take 15 minutes

and just for ben500 check out the video page on my website

http://myplasterer.com/
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# 12
ben500
Old 05-08-2006, 5:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nelly
To be honest I havent got a sodding clue, wheather it will or wont contain asbestos. My job is generally to skim over artex.

The reason artex was used so much was, it's fast and cheap, plastering a ceiling takes 2 1/2 to 3 hours give or take. But artexing can take 15 minutes

and just for ben500 check out the video page on my website

http://myplasterer.com/
I hope you didn't pee in that mix Nelly! I've heard about you plasterers you know.
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# 13
pinkpauline34
Old 05-08-2006, 6:30 PM
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You might like to check out this link:

http://www.asbestoswatchdog.co.uk/

My house was built in 1979 and last summer my shower leaked and my artex living room ceiling began bulging. I contacted my insurers who sent out a company called Rhoddar to take a sample for testing - it transpired it did contain asbestos so my living room had to be completely cleared out, windows and doors sealed up while it was removed and double bagged.

I was very lucky as my insurers arranged for all of this and I got a wonderful new (artex and asbestos free!) ceiling.

I know that the rest of my house has the same but I was told if it's not disturbed in any way, it is fine.

I hope this helps.
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# 14
Nile
Old 05-08-2006, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben500
I acknowledge Nelly is indeed a plasterer he has said so many times, but I think his expertise may lie more in getting plastered I've seen his posts! But I haven't seen any walls he's worked on
Having seen the website, references and video...........I think we can say nelly is an expert plasterer.

Is that humble pie you're eating ben500?

Thanks nelly
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# 15
donnalove
Old 05-08-2006, 11:24 PM
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sorry to hijack this thread but after reading it i have got a bit worried.
we have a wall in the front room that is do to be knocked down, this wall is artexed, with big icecles like op, we have been in the house since 1991 and previous owners were there 1988-1991 we think it was them that did it.
would this wall need testing??
also the artex on the ceiling in the kitchen is peeling off this is a thinner type is it a problem??

sorry but now worried
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# 16
alanobrien
Old 05-08-2006, 11:45 PM
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People get paranoid about asbestos. There are or rather were three types used in industry generically known by colours blue, brown and white.

The former two were banned some time ago and have largely dissapeared today. White (Chrysotile) is still very commonly found in pre 80's buildings.

As long as its bound in a matrix and not free floating in the air its harmless and easily removed with sensible precautions.

Your local council may even take it away free providing its bagged and labelled correctly - some do some dont.
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# 17
nelly
Old 06-08-2006, 9:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by donnalove
sorry to hijack this thread but after reading it i have got a bit worried.
we have a wall in the front room that is do to be knocked down, this wall is artexed, with big icecles like op, we have been in the house since 1991 and previous owners were there 1988-1991 we think it was them that did it.
would this wall need testing??
also the artex on the ceiling in the kitchen is peeling off this is a thinner type is it a problem??

sorry but now worried
The thinner artex you say is probably textured paint, not all artex is actually artex a lot of plasterers use plaster and put a pattern in that, You can easily check this by knocking of one of the peeks if its white its artex if its pink its plaster.
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# 18
melbury
Old 06-08-2006, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkpauline34
You might like to check out this link:

http://www.asbestoswatchdog.co.uk/

My house was built in 1979 and last summer my shower leaked and my artex living room ceiling began bulging. I contacted my insurers who sent out a company called Rhoddar to take a sample for testing - it transpired it did contain asbestos so my living room had to be completely cleared out, windows and doors sealed up while it was removed and double bagged.

I was very lucky as my insurers arranged for all of this and I got a wonderful new (artex and asbestos free!) ceiling.

I know that the rest of my house has the same but I was told if it's not disturbed in any way, it is fine.

I hope this helps.
I have just sat and read all of the report on this link and it is certainly reassuring. From the report it sounds like the "white" is pretty harmless and the whole thing has been blown completely out of proportion.

Must admit though, I was scared after reading some of the sites on asbestos.
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