How to safeguard yourself from the hazards of lead paint. This is part two of a three part segment regarding lead in homes and lead based paint in homes built prior to 1978.
Federal law requires any contractors hired to perform projects in homes, child care facilities and schools built before 1978 TO BE CERTIFIED IN LEAD PAINT REMOVAL and follow specific practices. If your home has lead paint, do not even ask a contractor who is not certified to do the work. There are plenty of contractors like Koppel Services that are certified and have excellent references.
Here are the steps they (and any homeowner doing it themselves) must follow:
- Contain the work area. Cover all floors and furniture if the furniture cannot be moved. Seal off all cooling and heating vents.
- Avoid ALL methods that create a lot of dust. Believe it or not some renovation methods generate so much dust they are banned by the EPA. The banned methods are sanding, blasting with power tools, needle gunning and anything not equipped with a HEPA certified vacuum.
- Mist surfaces before sanding or scraping.
- Clean up thoroughly. Use a HEPA vacuum to clean up all debris. Vacuum immediately after the work is completed and at least three times after once the dust has settled.