When it comes to older homes prior to the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s 1977 ban on the use of lead paints in residential properties and public buildings, they may contain lead paint. While not inherently dangerous, if this lead paint flakes or is chipped off and consumed (or exposed during renovations) it can cause significant health issues, especially in developing children. But why iss there lead in paint in the first place?
Why Lead is Used in Paint
Lead has a long history of use as an inexpensive and soft metal, from lead pipes to pewter plates. However, in modern times where it was used less in metalworking, it found itself being used more and more as a pigment and additive in metals. Three major reasons it saw use were:
- Coloration: Lead carbonate, known as a white lead, is used to create a white color, while lead tetroxide makes a vivid red.
- Quick Drying: Adding lead to paints also decreases the time it takes them to dry due to the heavy metal content. It is also more moisture resistant because of this.
- Durability: While a softer metal, lead is still much harder than the other ingredients in paint, and therefore adds additional durability.
How to Find Out If You Have Lead Paint
If your home has been made after 1978 when the CPSC lead ban took effect, you’re probably safe. However, if it’s an industrial building, you may not be so lucky. Industrial paints are still allowed to contain lead. Either way, you’ll need to get a sample or have inspectors come to take a sample for you. While we do asbestos and mold remediation, we test for lead as well. To do this, we’ll take an entire chip of paint with all the layers to make sure an older layer won’t prove a danger.
RRP: Getting Lead Paint Removed
The EPA’s Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Program (RRP for short) is a program for properly testing, removing, and disposing of lead paint and dust. These rules are so that homes built prior to 1978 are handled by certified contractors to avoid exposure to lead paint and resulting lead dust and contamination.
Here at Fiber Control Inc., we’re licensed for the Lead RRP program for any lead paint we may encounter during remediation. We believe this goes hand-in-hand with asbestos and mold remediation, as all three hazards are usually present in older buildings. If you’re looking for full-service inspections and removal of these hazards from your property, contact us today.