Health & Safety


Physical Plant Services: Maintenance of Asbestos Core Doors

Many doors at UWM, particularly fire-rated doors, have an asbestos core. Certain precautions are necessary when performing maintenance on these doors.

  • Have the proper equipment prior to any maintenance work:
    • HEPA vacuum

    • Amended water in spray bottle
    • Spray lubricant
    • Disposable wipes
    • Disposable drop cloth
    • Disposal bag with proper labeling.
  1. Place the disposable drop cloth where maintenance will be performed.
  2. Certain activities may require two persons. For example, one person to hold the spray bottle and HEPA vacuum nozzle, and the other person to disassemble the mortise lockset or other hardware.
  3. Spray any screws as you are disassembling. Use a gentle mist. Place screws on disposable wipe. Spray and wipe as necessary to remove any debris.
  4. Remove mortise lock set carefully so that core material is not disturbed. HEPA vacuum the mortise lock set of any debris, and gently wet wipe using either the amended water or with a wipe soaked with spray lubricant.
  5. Inspect mortise cavity for any loose debris and carefully HEPA vacuum using the nozzle attachment.
  6. Routine maintenance on doors is not expected to result in airborne asbestos exposure as long as the above precautions are taken. For other than routine work, respiratory protection may be required. Call Physical Plant Services (x4576) for an exposure assessment evaluation. You must be involved in UWM's respiratory protection program to wear a respirator.
  7. Reassemble parts taking care not to disturb the core material
  8. Inspect drop cloth for any debris. Only a HEPA vacuum and wet methods may be used for asbestos clean up activities.
  9. Place all wipes and drop cloth in waste disposal bag. Use spray bottle to gently mist all waste. Store all waste articles in the labeled container supplied by PPS. Make sure that container is closed when not in use.
  10. Call PPS (x4576) for waste disposal when necessary.

Door Disposal Procedures:

A Note From: Robert J Grieshaber

The minimum procedure necessary to prepare a door for disposal is to duct
tape all openings.  This is so the asbestos core doesn't fall out during
storage and transport.  It would also be nice if you could use some
red/white/black labels to indicate the door has an asbestos core or has
ACM. If you don't have labels, use a magic marker, paint pen or spray
paint.  I can supply you with labels, or you can generally find them in
our storage facility at Kenilworth.  If you don't label the door, the
abatement company will in order to meet the labeling requirements for
asbestos waste.

In my opinion, it really isn't necessary to completely double wrap the
door in plastic unless the door is severely broken or the openings cannot
easily be sealed with duct tape;  the outer skin basically encases the
door and meets the disposal requirements. 

The abatement contractor simply disposes the doors, whether wrapped or
not, in an approved landfill along with all the other asbestos waste
generated on campus.  Years ago we were wrapping the doors as standard
procedure, but we decided it really wasn't necessary from a safety or
regulatory necessity.

Please call me if you have any question or if care to discuss this in more
PLEASE NOTE: This procedure is for UWM use only. Regulatory agencies and other states may have requirements or interpretations which differ from this procedure.