4 tips to ensure lead paint safety
If you're planning to remodel or paint a home built before 1978, consider these pointers:
- If your project will disturb more than 6 square feet of interior paint or 20 square feet on the exterior, make sure your painter, handyman, remodeler or general contractor is EPA certified to employ lead-safe work practices. They should have a record of certification at the job site.
- Make sure contractors present you with a "Renovate Right" EPA pamphlet explaining lead hazards before starting a job.
- A lead-safe workspace should have plastic sheeting and warning signs. Contractors who follow the law will create barriers limiting access to the work area and will contain the dust and debris within those confines.
- At the end of the job, your contractor should clean the area with a HEPA vacuum and wipe it down with wet and dry cloths to determine whether lead dust remains, but consider hiring a lead inspector to perform a clearance test — a more stringent analysis where dust samples are tested at a lab.