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  • FIRST POST
    • purpleparrotuk
    • By purpleparrotuk 12th Sep 17, 12:34 PM
    • 192Posts
    • 19Thanks
    purpleparrotuk
    New Combi boiler and probable asbestos
    • #1
    • 12th Sep 17, 12:34 PM
    New Combi boiler and probable asbestos 12th Sep 17 at 12:34 PM
    I am purchasing a 1970s property and intend to have the old boiler replaced with a combi boiler. The homebuyers survey on the property said "the redundant chimney flue in the roof void and the verge edge undercloaks may contain asbestos material which may represent a health risk. You should now instruct a licensed contractor to carry out an investigation to identify the full extent of the problem together with an estimate of the cost for any necessary works"
    Is it best to get an asbestos surveyor in to check it out before work is carried out?
    Should I get it tested before I purchase the property?
Page 1
    • PhilE
    • By PhilE 12th Sep 17, 12:57 PM
    • 117 Posts
    • 98 Thanks
    PhilE
    • #2
    • 12th Sep 17, 12:57 PM
    • #2
    • 12th Sep 17, 12:57 PM
    I was in the same position at the beginning of the year.

    It most probably does contain asbestos. If the flue has paneling around it, the paneling itself will be of a higher asbestos content than the concrete flue.

    No need to panic, as all older homes have asbestos in them. But in light of the survey you need a professional to go round there and take some samples for testing, instruct them to also determine whether its safe in its present state. If its not, you don't enter the house until it is and the present owners shouldn't be living there also.

    If its in a safe state, that may not be a factor in reducing the price but if its necessary to replace the old boiler it is. Add on about £2,500 to the cost of replacing the boiler and heating system if there is high content licensed asbestos found, as you'll need a company qualified to remove high content asbestos. Its a more expensive procedure which needs approval first.

    If its just the old flue that needs to go, a heating engineer can actually remove that themselves as its an unlicensed asbestos product.
    However, if its found in an unsafe state with fragments of asbestos concrete in the loft that needs to be cleaned up when the flue's removed. Best to get a company qualified to remove unlicensed asbestos to do that, cost me about £65.

    Don't take short cuts with asbestos and avoid cowboys who have a blase attitude towards it. But don't panic either, a house of that age would have asbestos in it anyway.
    • purpleparrotuk
    • By purpleparrotuk 12th Sep 17, 1:06 PM
    • 192 Posts
    • 19 Thanks
    purpleparrotuk
    • #3
    • 12th Sep 17, 1:06 PM
    • #3
    • 12th Sep 17, 1:06 PM
    Thanks for the reply. I am paying for the new boiler myself since I was expecting it when I made my offer. Don't think the existing owner will reduce the price of the house any further due to asbestos. Not sure its worth having it done before I move in if he won't.
    Wonder how much a full asbestos survey would be once I move in? Will the man who does the boiler work tel me if he suspects asbestos when quoting me? He wont just tear it out will he?
    • EachPenny
    • By EachPenny 12th Sep 17, 1:54 PM
    • 2,125 Posts
    • 3,104 Thanks
    EachPenny
    • #4
    • 12th Sep 17, 1:54 PM
    • #4
    • 12th Sep 17, 1:54 PM
    Will the man who does the boiler work tel me if he suspects asbestos when quoting me? He wont just tear it out will he?
    Originally posted by purpleparrotuk
    He might just tear it out, which is what PhilE is talking about. A nasty experience.

    Personally I wouldn't get the whole house surveyed unless you are planning lots of other work. Just get a specialist company to examine and test the flue and any associated areas which will need working on as part of the boiler replacement.

    Then get quotes for the boiler work, making it very clear (armed with the above report) that the system contains asbestos and you want a quotation that takes this into account. (Also worth mentioning that you expect the work to be completed in accordance with HSE guidance, which you should familiarise yourself with first )

    If the new combi boiler is not going in the same location (the survey report says "the redundant chimney flue"??) then you may be better off keeping the projects separate. If the flue is redundant and doesn't need to be disturbed, then it may be best to leave it alone. A competent asbestos surveyor would be able to advise whether this would be appropriate.

    Plan to be at home when any asbestos removal work is being carried out - you don't want to come home and find that something other than what was agreed has been done.
    "In the future, everyone will be rich for 15 minutes"
    • PhilE
    • By PhilE 16th Sep 17, 1:24 AM
    • 117 Posts
    • 98 Thanks
    PhilE
    • #5
    • 16th Sep 17, 1:24 AM
    • #5
    • 16th Sep 17, 1:24 AM
    Wonder how much a full asbestos survey would be once I move in? Will the man who does the boiler work tel me if he suspects asbestos when quoting me? He wont just tear it out will he?
    Originally posted by purpleparrotuk
    About £60-£100 depending on how much potential asbestos there is in the house. Do it before moving in, especially if your surveyor suspects any damaged asbestos. Ask him/her about it.

    A heating engineer should inform you of any material he suspects of containing asbestos. (Its also your duty to inform any tradesmen of asbestos in your home) He should not touch suspected high content asbestos for his safety and your own. No one can remove 'licensed,' (high content) asbestos apart from licensed companies.

    So the pro who comes round to do an asbestos inspection might be able to take a sample and send it away for testing, but cant remove high content asbestos himself. Only low content.

    A heating engineer can take away low content asbestos, for example an asbestos concrete flue. But again, he cant touch high content asbestos.

    Get the asbestos inspection done before the heating installation, so you know what is asbestos and what type of asbestos it is.
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