Is Your Old Home Really Safe?Renovating Your Home; Things To Keep In Mind
Modern homes are built according to the latest safety standards and regulations to ensure that they pose no risks to either the occupants of said house, their neighbours or even the surrounding environment. While the process of building new homes is something that won’t be slowing down in the short term future, many people all over the world still live in old homes, with some of them being a few decades old.
But why should we be concerned so much about these older buildings? The primary reason is safety. Older homes may not only have become structurally weaker over time, but they may even contain some dangerous materials without you even knowing about them. For example, have you even thought of contacting an asbestos removalist to check whether there is any trace of this material in your home? Some dangerous materials and chemicals that should be removed as soon as possible from your old apartment include:
- Asbestos – The side effects due to asbestos usage have been widely documented in the medical community, and it is no wonder why priority should be given to removing it entirely from residential buildings. While it was widely used in the construction field for its ideal insulating properties, it can potentially cause a lot of respiratory diseases, proving to be fatal if a person is exposed too long to its airborne particles. Qualified asbestos services need to be contacted to remove asbestos materials in your home.
- Lead – Heavy metals are extremely dangerous for living tissues, more so if they are inhaled or ingested. Lead is no exception, and even though it was widely implemented in a variety of applications in the past, the discovery of its side effects has lead people to effectively stop using it. In the past, lead was used for pipework, while several lead-containing compounds used to be added to some oil based paints. You should definitely check whether your plumbing system consists of lead pipes, or alternatively test your water using a home water test kit. On the other hand, you should only attempt to remove lead paint if it is damaged or in poor condition, as it won’t pose much of a danger if is still in top shape.
- PCBs – PCBs, which stand for Polychlorinated Biphenyls are liquid compounds that were previously used as insulating agents in electrical devices such as transformers. PCBs decompose into harmful by-products that cause several health disorders if people are exposed to them. As always, contact a professional for safe disposal of these chemicals.
- Ozone Depleting Chemicals – Depletion of the ozone layer mainly occurs due to chemicals such chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), which can be found in old refrigerators and air conditioning machines. They are not toxic to humans, but they pose an indirect danger due to the way they can easily destruct the Earth’s ozone layer, allowing harmful UV rays to penetrate the atmosphere, thus causing conditions like skin cancers or cataracts. You should consider replacing older appliances with newer ones that use eco-friendlier refrigerants.