Lead-based paint was used in the majority of homes pre-1978 before it was banned by the federal government. However, many homes still contain remnants of lead paint, even when it’s been painted over. Removing lead-based painted surfaces is a difficult but important task. If you don’t follow the correct safety procedures, you can cause more harm than good. If you’ve got lead-based paint in your home and are looking to renovate, find out how below.
Why is Lead Removal Important?
Lead is a harmful chemical that was used in paints before 1978 when it was banned. When the paint begins to flake and deteriorate, it gives off particles that cause lead poisoning when inhaled. Further, it can damage the soil outside your property, which can be carelessly digested through grown vegetables or by young children playing. Therefore, to take risks off the table, you should remove any lead paint from your property. To do this, you need to first understand the methods of identifying lead contamination in your home.
Completely Seal The Room
Once you’ve identified areas in your home containing lead paint, it’s time to prepare your workspace. The first thing you need to do is seal the room. You need to use a 100ft roll of 6-mil plastic and a ton of duct tape for sealing.
You should start by creating an entrance. Do this by taping a sheet over the door and cutting a slit down the middle. Then, to keep particles escaping, you should hang another sheet on the outside. Then, you can use the roll to cover the entire floor and ensuring it is taped securely at the edges (where the floor meets the wall).
Use Protective Gear
Now that you’ve protected the inside from being contaminated with lead particles, it’s time to gear up with the correct safety gear. You will need to use a respirator mask, glasses, gloves, and shoe covers you can remove once you leave the workspace.
Always Work Wet
Before you start scraping away at the lead paint, soak the wall using a spray bottle. When you scrape lead paint off a wet surface, the harmful dust particles will cling to the wet surface instead of being blown into the air.
Starting at the top, scrape any loose paint off the wall. The scrapings mixed with water will make a mess, so ensure you wipe as you go. Have an empty bucket on hand to wring the cloth out. Once you’ve finished scraping the walls, use a wet sanding sponge to remove any rough areas.
Once you’ve finished removing the lead paint, it’s important to clean thoroughly before repainting. Wipe down the surface with a spray and wipe. Then, remove the plastic and fold it into the middle before putting it in the bin. Finally, you should use a hoover to clean the floors before mopping again.
Lead-painted surfaces can cause poisoning. If you want to eliminate the risks, exercise caution and follow the steps above.