I just need some opinions on this. I saw this outside my apartment (see picture attached below) and saw the pipe insulation outside my door just opposite at the neighbour's side (I just moved into new place...). I was worried that the yellow-brownish stuff around the pipe might be asbestos. What are the chances that it could have been asbestos?

Thanks a lot!

enter image description here


1 Answer 1


The inner section is definitely fiberglass, however the outer covering could be asbestos. I have worked on some industrial jobs where steam pipes were very similar. It should be tested to be sure. In 1 case they just painted the outer asbestos casing, in 2 others we removed all of it, big job and lots of safety gear and regulations.

With residential, in my area a homeowner can do the work but with commercial or industrial facilities, pros have to be hired, so it would be best to have it tested to know for sure so that safety or encapsulated processes can be taken to make it safe.

  • I am the poster of the question. I am new to this DIY stack. I suffered a brain fart just now and accidentally posted this question as an unregistered user..... Thanks for your reply! I am actually renting an apartment and I am not doing any DIY works. So I am wondering if I leave the insulation pipes undisturbed it should be fine?
    – fwg
    Commented Nov 30, 2018 at 2:17
  • 1
    Yes you will be fine. Asbestos is only a problem if disturbed. In fact many thousands of employees worked in factorys that used asbestos never had any problems but some did and the results are not good. Things other than insulation were asbestos based, brake shoes , popcorn ceilings, sideing, flooring. It can be found in almost any house built prior to the 1960's and some after.but if encapsulated with paint or not disturbed it is "safe" but if disturbed the fibers than cause several problems become airborne and we breathe them in that's where the danger exist. If not disturbed you r ok.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Nov 30, 2018 at 3:39

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