Anthophyllite Asbestos Fibers Anthophyllite asbestos fibers, magnified under an electron microscope.

Asbestos is a fibrous material that was once commonly used in construction. It’s very resistant to heat, so it’s most often used in fire-proofing products, insulation, roofing, and exterior siding.

It’s been known since the early 20th century that inhalation of asbestos can be highly toxic. Long-term exposure has been found to cause lung disease and some forms of chest or abdominal cancers. The most notable of those cancers is Mesothelioma. Asbestos-related diseases were once primarily work-related, though with the introduction of products using asbestos into the home (especially a home's drinking water), anyone may be at risk.

Asbestos has been banned in some countries and is tightly limited in its use in American products. Small amounts are still used in the production of small appliances, including toasters, dishwashers, broilers, waffle irons, and refrigerators.

Refrigerator water filters that can remove asbestos include: