How do you safely remove lead paint?


Quick Answer

To safely remove lead paint, wear the appropriate safety gear, and seal off the room with duct tape and plastic sheeting. Remove the paint using a wet method, such as wet sanding, and clean the room each day with water, detergent and a vacuum that features a HEPA filter.

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Full Answer

  1. Prepare for the removal

    Remove all items, including rugs, from the room, and seal the room by covering vents, doorways and windows with plastic sheeting that is at least 6 millimeters thick. Seal the seams of the plastic sheeting with duct tape. All workers should wear safety gear, including a respirator that is approved to filter lead paint, disposable coveralls, goggles, hair coverings and gloves, at all times while working in areas where lead paint is present.

  2. Remove the paint

    Wear the appropriate safety gear, and remove the paint with a wet sander that has a HEPA filter. Alternatively, apply liquid paint thinner and remove the paint with a scraper. Do not remove the paint using a dry method, such as sanding. Dispose of all debris according to local regulations.

  3. Clean the area

    Mist the entire room with water, and dust it each day. After dusting, wash all surfaces a second time, and mop the floors with water and detergent. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter to vacuum the room thoroughly, and use the vacuum to clean workers' clothes before leaving the room. All protective clothing and debris from the room should be double-bagged and thrown away.

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