Addressing Lead Paint Removal Services With Biohazard Cleanup USA
One of the most serious health issues these days is lead poisoning, particularly for children, and dust from lead paint that has deteriorated is the main source of this lead. However, if the home you live in has lead paint, your problem doesn’t need to derail any remodeling plans you have or cause you want to live someplace else.
Lead poisoning takes place mainly in houses that were built prior to 1978, which was the year that lead was banned from being put into residential paints. It is caused by dust from remodeling projects or paints that are chalking, chipping, peeling and flaking.
In this article, we will be showing you some safe dust control methods that lead reduction experts to use successfully. They can be used when you are making repairs, remodeling, redecorating or disturbing lead paint in other ways.
We will be discussing three basic techniques – control dust, work wet, and thoroughly clean up. At first, they might seem slow and cumbersome. However, they are basic dust control methods that you would expect any good remodeler or painter would use.
Who should use the procedures?
If you are living in a house that was built before 1978, then we recommend that you follow these procedures whenever you are disturbing paint when making repairs, repainting or remodelings unless you know for sure that there is no lead contained in the surfaces.
Key Tools and Materials
- 6 mil plastic: (purchase a 100-foot long, 8-foot wide roll). One hundred feet is definitely a lot of poly, however, you will be surprised at the amount you end up using.
- Duct tape: (60-yard roll). Purchased the cloth-backed type instead of the all-plastic kind since you can more easily tear pieces from the roll. PUrchase an extra roll so that you don’t run out.
- Coarse and medium sanding sponges
- Half mask respirator: P100 filters should be used
- 2-inch carbide scraper
- Rubber gloves: Purchase neoprene or rubber gloves. Don’t purchase flimsy gloves. You can get all of the items above online, on a home improvement store, or home center.
- HEPA vacuum: HEPA vacuums can be purchased online for as little as a couple hundred dollars for a consumer model, and heavy-duty models start at about $500 to $600. There are also some rental stores that carry them, and they may be provided for free by local public health programs at a very low rental rate or for free. Don’t confuse real HEP vacuums that have been designed for use with the lead with regular home vacuums offering “HEPA filtration.”
First Phase: Get the dust under control
- Cover the floor
- Use 6-mil polyethylene plastic and tape it to the baseboard or floor at least 5 feet beyond the area that you will be working in. Make sure that you seal all of the sides of poly to keep the dust from coming in underneath it. The poly can instead be taped to the baseboard, but it may pull the paint off when you take it off.
- Cover all the door openings
- Tape the doors off as well as the other openings so that dust is confined to the room that you are working on.
- Make a sealed exit to make a passage through the door, use a piece of poly to tape the whole perimeter to the floor and door frame. Cut a slit in the poly, starting around 6 inches from the top and then stop around 6 inches from the floor. Drape the second poly piece over the first one.
- Cover furniture
- Move the furniture to the center that you are not able to take out of the room. Use poly to cover it and tape the edges tightly to the poly onto the floor.
Second Phase: Work Wet
- Wet down the paint
- Wet the window stop down as well as other parts that are going to be removed. For this specific lead paint removal chore, use a spray bottle filled with water.
- Pry the stop off
- Use a utility knife to score the trim joint/stop to prevent chipping. Next pry the stop off and take the inner sash, outer sash, and parting stop off so that you can strip paint from all of the sliding surfaces. It frequently is easier to use new wood to replace the stop and parting stop.
- Start scraping
- Wet the surface down again and scrape away any flaking, loose paint, starting at the top and then work down. Wipe up the paint flakes, sludge and water often using a cloth (or a HEPA vacuum) and wring it inside an empty bucket. Be careful when you are scraping, compared to dry wood, wet wood is much more susceptible to gouging.
- Scrape the window sills
- Scrape the window sills and troughs, which are the exposed sill under the window sash, since they are very vulnerable to peeling and chipping from sunlight and moisture.
- Wet Sand
- Once you are finished scraping, wet-sand smooth chipped, rough, and chalking areas using a coarse- or medium-grit sanding sponge. These sponges do a great job of reaching the corners using its square edges and conforming to curves.
- Scrape all of the sash edges
- Completely scrape off the paint from the sashes sliding edges and stops (or purchase new stops). Work in the room from an extra poly layer on the floor or poly-covered work surface.
Third Phase: Thoroughly Clean Up
- Vacuum everything
- Use a HEPA vacuum to vacuum your entire work area to pick up dust and paint chips. Use a screwdriver tip to dig the clips and sludge out of the corners and cracks, particularly around the windows to help with the process of removing lead paint.
- Wet a paper towel down
- Mis together water and all-purpose cleaner inside of a spray bottle and then soak a heavyweight and folded the paper towel.
- Start wiping.
- Use the wet towel to wipe down the painted surfaces, start at the top and then work down to help remove the lead paint. You want to always be pushing the residue and sludge downward. Then refold your paper towel so that you have a new clean surface and once again wipe down the surface, including the wall nearby. Drop any paint chips and dirty paper towels into a bucket. You will eventually be putting them inside of plastic garbage bag and throwing them away.
- Rinse using clean water
- Rinse down the complete project using clean water and a cloth, and start again from the top and work downward. In one direction, wipe down all of the horizontal surfaces. Refold your cloth after each wipe to expose another clean surface. Change your water frequently and rinse your cloth in your bucket of water.
- Wet the poly down
- Wet the contaminated surfaces down with your spray bottle and poly. Then fold the doorway’s poly inside, and pull the corners up and then fold them inward, and roll the poly up on the floor. Place debris and the poly in 6-mil garbage bags and throw them away in the trash.
- Thoroughly vacuum
- Use a HEPA vacuum to vacuum the floor, and work carefully along edges and in the corners. Be particularly thorough on old wooden floors that hold dust and have a lot of cracks.
- Wash the floor
- Use a cloth and all-purpose cleaner to wash the floor. Move the cloth to reduce potential recontamination so the dirtiest edge is the leading edge at all times. Wring the cloth out into a second bucket along with the paint chips. Change your water frequently. Then use the same technique to rinse.
Make Your Space Lead Safe
To make a room lead-safe involves not only dealing with the paint preparation mess as well as any lead dust that may have collected on the sills, floors and other areas before you start.
The process of washing and wiping isn’t much more hassle than you may think since you have to clean off the dust from the walls and woodwork before you start to paint anyway. However, there is a more rigorous technique for lead paint.
Starting up vacuuming up debris and paint chips using a HEPA vacuum. Gunk sticks in the cracks, so you need it dig it out while you are working. Tuck your screwdriver blade inside of a towel and run it across the crevices and corners to dig it out. The metal weatherstrip was left inside the window trough since it was tight to the window sill and the paint on it was in good shape still. However, if you have a loose weatherstrip or the paint surrounding it is peel, then you will need to take it off and clean the area.
Use an all-purpose cleaner to wash the area. For successful cleaning, the key is wiping in one direction as well as avoid clean areas getting recontaminated. Heavy-weight paper towels were used and we folded them after every wipe in order to avoid recontamination. If you are using a bucket of water and cloths (rather than a spray bottle), be sure to frequently shake paints and wring excess water into a second bucket and also make sure to change the cloths and water often. You can usually pour dirty water inside of a toilet, however, make sure to check with the local health department for approval.
Rinse using a bucket of water and a clean cloth, and use the same wiping techniques. To reduce the risk of other rooms getting contaminated, we recommend that you complete all cleanup before you do any repainting. The poly should be removed first. The concept is to make sure all contaminated sides towards the center of the floor, and first remove the highest poly first, and then fold it inward. Continue with the process, and fold the corners towards the center, and then roll the poly up and seal it into a 6-mil garbage bag (this thickness is not carried by most home centers, but can be ordered online). Usually, the bags can be placed in the trash, but be sure to check with your health department.
As a final step, use the same three-step process to clean uncarpeted floors that you used with woodwork: use a HEPA vacuum for vacuuming, and then use an all-purpose cleaner to wash and then rinse.