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Old 02-28-2011, 01:09 PM   #1
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Another Lead Paint Question


I've searched through all the lead paint topics in this forum but none of them seemed to fit my situation directly. I am planning to remodel a portion of my house that requires me to demo a wall and a ceiling in a 7'x12' room . The house was built in the 1940's and even though a lead paint test kit (cheap one from Lowes) didn't show positive results, I'm certain there is lead in the paint on the walls that I'm going to demo. Luckily, this room is small and easily isolated from the rest of the house.

I plan on doing this work myself but I want to make certain that I do it right. My wife and daughter will be sent to my in-laws for the weekend that I do the work. I plan to buy a Tyvek suit and a lead paint rated respirator, I have many roles of plastic sheeting and tape, and I plan on buying a Ridgid HEPA certified vacuum (model RV2400HF) to help with cleanup. I've also read and re-read the EPA guidelines for lead paint abatement.

Am I missing something? Am I delusional to think that a DIY'er (me) can do this project? I think all of the dire warnings posted online are starting to put a dent in my confidence level...

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Old 02-28-2011, 01:53 PM   #2
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First where are you? Requirements differ depending on where you live. Start with your county building office to see what requirements you need to meet as a DIY'er. They are usually different from what is required as a GC etc.

Airborne asbestos and lead paint dust is a serious concern, but the concern is only eating it or breathing it.

Don't each lead paint chips.

If you sand anything with lead paint, wear a proper respirator.

I believe the level of preparation you are planning is for GC or professionals who deal with this on a daily basis, not the DIY'er who is only looking at one weekend. If you are just doing demo, IOW simple cutting, pulling, and tossing, but no sanding, personally I would go with a quality mask and call it done. Add plastic over the doorways, and good clean up after just for peace of mind.

The level of protection you are proposing seems more in line for airborne asbestos (insulation etc.) than lead paint.

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Old 02-28-2011, 02:01 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondesense View Post
First where are you? Requirements differ depending on where you live. Start with your county building office to see what requirements you need to meet as a DIY'er. They are usually different from what is required as a GC etc.

Airborne asbestos and lead paint dust is a serious concern, but the concern is only eating it or breathing it.

Don't each lead paint chips.

If you sand anything with lead paint, wear a proper respirator.

I believe the level of preparation you are planning is for GC or professionals who deal with this on a daily basis, not the DIY'er who is only looking at one weekend. If you are just doing demo, IOW simple cutting, pulling, and tossing, but no sanding, personally I would go with a quality mask and call it done. Add plastic over the doorways, and good clean up after just for peace of mind.

The level of protection you are proposing seems more in line for airborne asbestos (insulation etc.) than lead paint.
Lead paint is very serious and should not be taken lightly whether your a contractor or diy. Its the lead dust that cause problems, not necessarily from eating it. Even a diyer should take proper precautions, after all it is his and his family's lives we are talking about. It does not take much lead dust to cause health problems. I'm not going to go into the law, which is federal, but if you want to learn more about the law and how to keep yourself safe you can click on my signature and you will find links to th epa in regards to working with lead paint.
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Old 02-28-2011, 03:40 PM   #4
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Also spray everything with water that you are about to demo. That will keep the dust at a minimal. Always check with your local Government reguarding lead laws. You could end up getting someone out to test the room and deem it lead free, then you will be put at ease.
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Old 02-28-2011, 03:43 PM   #5
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Thanks for the good tips! I especially like the idea of testing the room when I'm done to make certain that I didn't leave anything behind.
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Old 02-28-2011, 04:39 PM   #6
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You sound pretty prepared. One thing that I found useful was to have a pair of shoes specifically for the work area. If I had to leave the room I would leave those shoes behind when I exited and put them back on when I entered. Given the age of your house and the scope of your work, you should be fine. In fact silica dust might be a greater hazard depending on what your walls are made of. Still those same precautions for lead will protect you from any other dust.
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Old 02-28-2011, 11:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
I think all of the dire warnings posted online are starting to put a dent in my confidence level...
I think the dire warnings have put a dent in our collective sanity.

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