Identify Your Asbestos: Pipe Insulation

Asbestos was commonly used for the purposes of insulating heating pipes and other pipes where tempurature needed to be maintained.

Where you find it:

  • Basements - insulation of pipes coming from steam or hot water furnaces leading into living areas.
  • Garages - insulation of transit piping proceeding through garage area.

What you should do:

If asbestos is in a stable condition, you can cover it with newer insulation, or other covering from your local hardware store. However, if crumbling or decay is occuring, removal may be the safest solution. Contact a local asbestos abatement company for more details, or visit our section on asbestos abatement.


Basement heating pipe leading into living area.

Basement heating pipe coverings extending through basement area.

User Feedback:

"We had some friends who were into the removal scene in the 80's.  Their sugestion was 1. to paint the insulation with latex paint.  I later saw that 2. it could be wrapped with saran wrap, the stuff that sticks to itself.  this is what I did.  I'm in this house long term so at this momment not an issue.  To remove "safely", spritz with water to prevent dust when removing, also wear a resperator.  Ours is in two pieces held together with bands.  Some was easily removed by the boiler people when a new unit was installed. " - Mel

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