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Sunday 16 May 2004 1.37pm
Doing a spot of decorating and want to get rid off a load of artex on all the ceilings. A diy website gave the following advice;

"Some older artex may contain asbestos and it is extremely unwise to sand down or scrape without seeking the advice of an asbestos specialist. Contact your local council for help with this. "

Anyone got any experience of dealing with this stuff? And who at the council would be interested and what sort of obligation would they have?
Sunday 16 May 2004 2.36pm

We had the exact same problem in our flat trying to get rid of artex on the ceiling and used a great product called X-Tex we got on DECORATING DIRECT'S website:

I can't advise about who would have info on determining whether the artex might have asbestos but I can say that once you find that out, I would certainly recommend this product.

Good luck!

Sunday 16 May 2004 3.10pm
I had such a job getting the artex off my ceilings, I ended up skimming them with plaster.

Ignorance is bliss
Sunday 16 May 2004 9.31pm
I had 2 ceilings with artex which was flaking off bit by bit anyway. One got attacked with scrapers, cold chisels and various other things, took several days, made an awful mess, still looks hideous and has probably given me asbestosis. The other had a skim-over, which took an hour or two, made no mess, looks lovely and relased no particles whatever into the air.

Guess which I recommend?
Monday 17 May 2004 10.48am
I'd guess you would recommend the medium dry, or possibly a half dry cider and half perry mix Jo.

Sufficient quantities of either would turn a messy ceiling into the Cistine Chapel

...there's plenty more c**** in the cup.
Monday 17 May 2004 11.20am
it also depends when it was put up, the vast majority after about (and I'm not entirely sure of the date) 1980 should asbestos free. anything pre 1970 would be advised to check with a profesional if there is asbestos or not.
Monday 17 May 2004 12.38pm
If you're living in a Council house, the Southwark website says to check with your neighbourhood housing office and further consult your tenant handbook. Given the likely response from the neighbourhood office, I suggest going straight to Housing Department's Technical Services Unit and ask them for advice. While the webpage I've linked to doesn't mention asbestos, I know that a few years ago Technical Services developed a programme for dealing with asbestos when removing tenants old gas fires and replacing them with new electric ones.

If you're not living in a council house, you could either try pretending that you are, or call Southwark's environmental health team, who may know who the industry experts are.

When I got rid of my artexed ceilings I took Jo's second option too.
Monday 17 May 2004 1.01pm
The Health & Safety Executive website has a lot of information on asbestos.

You can download leaflets here, and there is a dedicated portion of their website dealing with the subject here.

There is a discussion about the use of asbestos in Artex at item 4.7 in these minutes of the Asbestos Liaison Group from a couple of years ago.

Basically, if you think there might be asbestos in old artex, you should get a properly licensed firm in to check it out and do the removal. HSE have an information phone line, or you can check out the list of contractors here and here.

On the other hand, you could just skip all this stuff and speak to the experts around the corner, here:

Post edited (17 May 04 13:04)
Monday 17 May 2004 2.13pm
thanks everyone....

barkyhead & TUMJ - did you do the skimming yourself? Or get someone in to do it? If the former, isn't it hard and shouldn't I go to college to learn how to do it first or something (my much more diy-orientated older bro says i'll make a mess)? If the latter who were they? Thanks.

Andrew, thanks a lot for your help - think I'll phone the freeholder and see if they know when the artex was put down and if it has asbestos in it.

Monday 17 May 2004 2.28pm

No worries. I'd definitely get a pro in to do it for you - it's a very skilled job to skim a ceiling, even if they do make it look easy! Depending on the size of the ceiling, it should set you back a couple of hundred....

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