Asbestos Roof Shingles Life Expectancy (Plus The Cost Of Removal)

Last Updated on January 16, 2022 by

Asbestos roof shingles life expectancy can be anywhere from 30 to 50 years. Shingles are breakable and hard to work with if you have never worked on them before. To ensure your asbestos roof lasts for a long time, you should apply spray polyurethane foam over it to seal them in.

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral containing flexible and soft fiber. These fibers are strong, can resist heat, erosion, and electricity. The strong fibers make Asbestos very useful in roofing but also very toxic.

Asbestos can be dangerous if consumed. The longer it stays in the body, the more servers the effects. It can cause inflammation as well as genetic damage to a person. Asbestos can also cause the rare and very aggressive cancer, Mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is not only cancer that can be caused by Asbestos. Symptoms from asbestos poisoning can take years to manifest.

Therefore, water harvested from asbestos roofing is not suitable for drinking. All the same, asbestos-based roofing is non-hazardous when intact and in good condition. Consider using a licensed asbestos contractor for removal when it reaches its life span. 

What Are The Types Of Asbestos Available?

Asbestos is categorized into two families, Serpentine and Amphibole. The two families indicate the fiber shape they possess. Of the two families, Asbestos occurs naturally in six different silicate minerals. These six types of Asbestos include:

1. Chrysotile

2. Amosite

3. Crocidolite

4. Anthophyllite

5. Tremolite

6. Actinolite

Asbestos was mined almost everywhere across the United States of America. However, the last mine located in California was closed in 2002. Asbestos is still in use in the country. Tonnes of Asbestos are imported from other countries to quench the need for it in the country.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has various laws put up to regulate the use of Asbestos and help minimize the exposure to people. The Environmental Protection Agency had tried to ban the use of any product that contained the mineral. The ban failed, and products containing this mineral are still in use.

What Is The Cost Of Installing An Asbestos Roof?

Installation of an asbestos roof can range from 10,000 dollars to 40,000 dollars. People preferred asbestos roofing lightweight and durable yet cost-effective. However, despite its friendly cost, many homeowners are beginning to opt for alternatives to protect themselves against harmful chemicals. Again, removing the asbestos roof requires a licensed contractor, eventually making the roofing costly. 

What Is The Cost Of Repairing Or Removal Of Asbestos Roofing Shingles?

Cost Of Repairing Or Removal Of Asbestos Roofing Shingles

For any product that has Asbestos in it, the motto of addressing it is usually, “if it is not broken, leave it alone.” However, if you decide to remove the roofing, it will cost you around $8 per square foot. Licensed contractors who charge hourly usually require around $200 per hour. Most will remove 25 square feet per hour, translating the removal cost to about $800-$1,200 per 100 square feet. 

Note that the removal cost includes the disposal fee. Therefore, it is recommended to hire a professional for removal to ensure the safe disposal of the asbestos roofing. 

When asbestos shingles get damaged, there are only two fixes for them. You either repair or remove them. Repair is the first and most common option when asbestos shingles get damaged. Repairing is usually done in two ways; either the damaged shingles are sealed or covered.


Sealing damaged asbestos shingles is done by applying a sealant that will either hold the asbestos fibers together or coat the fibers together so that they cannot escape.


This method involves the placement of material over the damaged asbestos shingles to prevent any fibers from being released into the air.

Repairing asbestos shingles is the most common measure when they get damaged. It is less costly as compared to removing them.

How Much Does Removal Of Asbestos Cost?

The cost of asbestos removal is not constant all through the United States of America. The cost varies with the region you are in. Since the removal of Asbestos is expensive, it is required that you check if you do have Asbestos. Sampling and testing are done on sight. It will cost you 250 dollars to 1000 dollars. The alternative is to have a sample sent to testing facilities for analysis; it will cost less than on-site testing.

Once the Asbestos is approved, it is worked on over three phases.

Work preparation phase

The contractors are well vast with knowledge on how to prep the site and area they will be using. The cost of work preparation is about 50 dollars per square foot.

The removal phase

The removal phase is where the actual work is done. All the Asbestos is removed and safely separated from your house. The cost of this phase will be about 8 dollars to 25 dollars per square foot.

The disposal phase

Damaged Asbestos can be dangerous to your health and anyone around it. It has to be properly transported and disposed of to avoid any risks.

Removal of Asbestos is not just a job for anyone. Some laws do allow the homeowner to do the job themselves. However, looking at the health risks that Asbestos can cause, it is advisable to get a licensed contractor to do the job.

Professionals in this line of work are well aware of all the regulations set to regulate Asbestos removal. However, most include the disposal fee in the removal cost. 

Using A Contractor To Remove Asbestos

It is advisable to have your Asbestos removed by a contractor. Here are a few things that you need to check when choosing a contractor:

1. Check whether the contractor you are using has violated the set guideline set up by your local air pollution control board. Also, you should find out if there is any legal action taken against them.

2. Ensure you have a written contract that specifies all the work plans. Also, the contract should include any legal documents or certificates required by law for the removal of Asbestos.

3. Ensure that the area where the Asbestos is being worked on is marked as a hazard area. Pets and anyone else that is not working in the area should not be allowed to walk or play around. This minimizes tracking of the Asbestos from one point to the other.

4. Be strict with your contractor to ensure they use the right equipment while working on your project. Asbestos should not be crushed into smaller pieces, this is well known to the contractor, but it never hurts to remind them.

5. After completion, you have to make sure that your contractor cleans up after themselves and leaves no trace of Asbestos in your home. Mops, rugs, and high-efficiency particulate air vacuums are used to remove any remaining asbestos fibers altogether.

Final Thoughts

Asbestos roof shingles have a very long life expectancy. However, they have to remain intact and not get any damage whatsoever. Damaged Asbestos can cause harmful effects on anyone who breathes the fibers in. Always get a licensed contractor for repair or removal to keep your health in check. To replace your roofing, consider other available if you want to avoid any risk associated with Asbestos. 

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