Transite Pipe: What is it?

Transite pipe is an asbestos-cement product which was used for both HVAC ducts and for chimney or flue material to vent residential gas-fired appliances. Asbestos is an excellent material for insulation because the fibers are strong, flexible and will not burn.duct_transite_san_jose

Transite pipe was used as flues above wall heaters and water heaters installed in the 1950-1970 era. Many times the gas-fired appliances may be brand new, but the original transite flue pipes were left in place.

What’s the concern? The dust that is created from the manufacture, installation and eventual deterioration of asbestos materials releases asbestos in the air.


Asbestos becomes a health hazard only when these materials crumble, fall apart, are damaged or ripped. When asbestos materials are damaged, fibers are released into the air, where they may stay suspended for long periods of time. Asbestos can then be inhaled and the fibers can lodge deeply in the lungs.

Touching transite pipe, or simply removing and disposing of an intact section of this material from a building by carrying it outside should not release a significant level of airborne asbestos fibers unless:

  • · The transite pipe was deteriorated, soft, and crumbly due to weather exposure.
  • · The transite pipe was removed using power tools producing asbestos-containing dust.

Many building jurisdictions require removal of the transite pipe flues when a wall heater or water heater is replaced.

Count on the certified inspectors at Pacific Coast Inspections, Inc. to identify transite pipe, its condition and make recommendations for your home buying clients.

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