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Posted by Mrs. Bean on April 4th, 2000 11:47 AM
In reply to Lead paint by Henry in MI on April 4th, 2000 04:46 AM [Go to top of thread]

The mere existence of lead in your home doesn't automatically mean you have to haul in the abatement crew. The hazard posed by lead paint is in it's condition. Is it chipping? Cracking? Flaking? Creating dust in contact areas such as doors and windows? If you have lead paint in poor condition, you have to remedy that by either a) abatement or b) containment (sealing it up). I would definitely suggest, for your peace of mind, taking the kids in to have their blood lead levels checked. However, before you do this, check with your particular state agency about the rules and regulations - I believe in some states if your child tests high for lead, you are required to move out, etc. etc. - a total nightmare. Do your homework and you'll be fine. My husband and i face the same situation - lead everywhere in our 300 year old house - but no kids! In some of the rooms, we're merely sealing up the paint (in perfect condition, i might add) with some KILLZ and another coat of non-lead paint. In other rooms, we're simply replacing the trim. The floors are painted, unfortunately, but we're going to refinish them and we've purchased a shop vac with a HEPA filter, and always wear respirators when working with any of this stuff. If you yourself are going to do anything with this lead situation, DO NOT, i reapeat, DO NOT use dust masks. The extra $$ for a respirator made specifically to filter out particle / etc. is well worth it. Contact a lead abatement company and at least get an estimate from them - chances are it will be exhorbitant. Contact a contractor you trust (oxymoron, hee hee) and go through your options with him - as far as replacing whatever woodword you're able to instead of going through the hassle of stripping it, etc. Keep in mind that the usual regulation pertains to "mouthable surfaces" only - hence, a flat surface whose paint is in excellent condition is not, in itself, a hazzard. Hope this helps!

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