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Asbestos or other nasties in Cars?
p2ccolo - 29/6/18 at 07:17 PM

Hi All,

In the past 18 months or so I've stripped out the majority of an interior of a 2003 BMW, that is now used for track days. But its recently crossed my mind as to wether or not such a car could have any nasty stuff in any of the insulation or other materials used? I have ripped apart insulation for example under the dashboard, yanking it out some of it, whilst leaving other bits I couldn't fully get to easily, and the car is and has always been, and remains a bit of dusty project in the inside. Should we have any health concerns with dust and debris from this sort of thing, i.e any damaged insulation or other exposed damaged material on cars of this age? Managed to worry myself today over-thinking about!

[Edited on 29/6/18 by p2ccolo]


cliftyhanger - 29/6/18 at 07:35 PM

Pretty certain asbestos had disappeared from car production a few years before. Mid 90's for asbestos pads and clutches (though I have a good stock on NOS asbestos pads here, brilliant things. And before anybody tells me they are dangerous, just think. All cars from probably 1930ish up to mid 90's used asbestos brake/clutch material, and if you check the only people with elevated risks are a small number of brake people, many of who smoked and used wire brushes/abrasives on the linings)
So worry not, sleep well etc.


gremlin1234 - 29/6/18 at 07:51 PM

there used to be stories of how bad burned plastic / rubber from car wreaks could be

fortunately these have been debunked

http://www.hse.gov.uk/mvr/topics/fluoroelastomers.htm

(HF: Hydrogen fluoride, which with water makes Hydrofluoric acid )

quote:

Fact There is no verifiable incident related to HF from burnt out vehicles anywhere in the world. And for fairly good scientific reasons. Hydrogen fluoride is a gas and, in the event of it being produced from a fluoroelastomer in a fire, it would disperse very quickly with the flames. It also needs water to produce hydrofluoric acid but if you put out the flames with an extinguisher you also dilute and wash away any acid. It seems it is rather difficult to reproduce the 600 psi, sealed-vessel conditions of the laboratory experiment in a real vehicle fire situation.




quote:

It makes sense to wear suitable gloves to stop getting you hands dirty when dealing with burnt-out vehicles, so even if there was the tiniest chance of HF being present, you would be protected.



[Edited on 29/6/18 by gremlin1234]


cliftyhanger - 29/6/18 at 08:28 PM

Even so, hydrofluoric acid scares me silly. Ever since I spent a week working with the stuff as an undergrad. Really focusses the mind...


dave r - 1/7/18 at 09:42 AM

quote:
Originally posted by cliftyhanger
Even so, hydrofluoric acid scares me silly. Ever since I spent a week working with the stuff as an undergrad. Really focusses the mind...


i work with a derivative of it daily... its not nice stuff


owelly - 1/7/18 at 03:12 PM

At work, we still handle used Viton products as hazardous waste. Viton is used a lot in O-rings, seals and car components and if burnt (or overheated), becomes hazardous.
In short, don't burn your car and breathe in the fumes.


scudderfish - 1/7/18 at 06:52 PM

This is a post from a fun chemist's blog http://blogs.sciencemag.org/pipeline/archives/2008/02/26/sand_wont_save_you_this_time


Tazzzzman1 - 2/7/18 at 06:19 AM

All vehicle manufacturing must now comply with IMDS (International Material Data system) legislation which bans certain substances and ensures that 95% of the vehicle by weight is recyclable. This is from 2005 vehicles onwards.
Therefore things like asbestos, Chromate, leads etc are things of the past. Every single component part (even a single rivet, bolt, O ring) has this data recorded against it...


Mr Whippy - 2/7/18 at 11:13 AM

my late 1990 era Bluebirds had warning contains Asbestos labels on the engine bulkhead though none was visible, obviously I didn't investigate too much but it seemed poking about that it was sandwiched between two layers of steel that made up the bulkhead presumably for fire protection? Why they chose asbestos for such a basic function seems odd


p2ccolo - 10/7/18 at 05:41 PM

Thanks for all the replies. Iím completely unknowneldgae about asbestos or even what it really looks like to be honest, but Is there any possibility of it being contained in the insulation behind the dash in my 2003 E46, the insulation in question is pictured below:



gremlin1234 - 10/7/18 at 06:01 PM

quote:
Originally posted by p2ccolo
Thanks for all the replies. Iím completely unknowneldgae about asbestos or even what it really looks like to be honest, but Is there any possibility of it being contained in the insulation behind the dash in my 2003 E46, the insulation in question is pictured below:
(pictured above now)
thats very unlikely to be asbestos, given the year of the car, and how coarse the matting is. - it could however still be irritating.
one way of lowering the risk for asbestos, and other particles is a covering of 'hair spray', light dusting first because you don't want to blow the stuff about.
edit: particles not partials

[Edited on 10/7/18 by gremlin1234]


Mr Whippy - 11/7/18 at 12:02 PM

No that stuff is made from recycled clothing and has been around for ages, nothing hazardous in that at all