Artex – Asbestos Reinforced Textured Coating

Artex applied to a ceiling

Artex (Asbestos Reinforced Textured Coating) is a trade name for a type of textured coating commonly found on walls and ceilings in homes and businesses throughout the UK. It was applied throughout the 1970’s and up to the late 80’s, and a similar form of textured coating is still used today. If you need your Artex testing for asbestos or you need free impartial advice please feel free to contact us. Contact Jane at HSG Surveys 07703 203930 – 01274 959994 or fill in the contact form.

How do I know if my Artex contains asbestos?

Most textured coatings are painted white. However, if a small area is damaged, it may reveal the true colour of the coating beneath the paint. For example, an orangey-brown or grey colour will usually indicate that the coating is plaster (as opposed to a true Artex coating). Plaster coatings are generally more modern, and so are unlikely to contain asbestos fibres.


However, if the coating is white throughout, then we recommend that you contact us to arrange for asbestos sampling to be undertaken prior to disturbing the material, as this generally indicates a true ‘Artex’-type coating. Artex and other similar textured coatings may contain chrysotile asbestos fibres (white asbestos) that can contaminate the air if the material is drilled or disturbed.

The only way to know for certain is to have it tested for asbestos fibres. Our asbestos surveyors will take a small scraping of the Artex, usually from a damaged area or if no damage is present from the corners of the room. This is then analysed under laboratory conditions to determine whether or not asbestos fibres are present.

Is it safe?

Artex containing asbestos is safe when it’s in good condition and does not pose any health risk. The asbestos fibres are firmly bound into the material and will not become airborne under normal conditions.

The problem with Artex arises if drill, sand or disturb the material in some other way. Precautions must be taken, such as wearing the appropriate RPE (face mask) and PPE (disposable overalls), and further control measures to prevent contamination to other areas of the property.


If you have any concerns regarding suspected or known asbestos products, we are here to assist you in managing asbestos in your home or place of work.  Contact HSG Surveys Ltd on  01274 959994 / 07703 203930 or 07711 855891 or at, or via the contacts page on our website

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