We are seeing an increase in plaster board (Gib board) samples, this building material does not contain asbestos. Gib stopping compounds and skim coats however has been found to be positive as have textured coatings of many different appearances. Decorative coatings and plasters are also known as textured coatings, stipple, popcorn ceiling, decorative plasters and plastered renders & stucco (usually external). Coatings are usually white or cream in colour unless painted, and may have a glitter like appearance. All types applied prior to the 1990’s may contain asbestos regardless of appearance. Most commonly Chrysotile (white) asbestos was added to the product as a binder to give strength and rigidity to the texture. The asbestos content is generally low. Some products were manufactured, some were hand mixed, the asbestos content of hand mixed is often not uniformly present. Representative and composite sampling from several locations is recommended. As with all ACMs, asbestos containing coatings pose the greatest risk when disturbed, and or when in poor condition such as regularly flaking.
Decorative coatings should not be confused with "Sprayed Insulation Coatings" usually in commercial and industrial settings which were applied as fire protection and insulation. The asbestos content is usually very high, homogenous and considered extremely friable.