As masters in our industry, we understand the importance of safety and regulations in regards to painting practices, and demonstrate this prominently in our lead abatement and handling methods. Law behind lead abatement and its safe handling practices is exceptionally specific, and requires extremely careful and dutiful workers to follow it safely and effectively. Lead is an exceptionally toxic substance, and is especially dangerous because of how it can spread. Regulation states that the two most important goals of lead abatement practices are:
• To contain all airborne lead particles and any other airborne particles that have been contaminated by lead
• To prevent lead from leaking, spilling, or settling onto floors, horizontal surfaces, or uncovered ground (contaminated soil is a very serious problem)
Practices differ immensely based on a wide range of factors, but can be split into two branches when considering containment and removal.
Containment is the method of lead handling that simply seals lead paint under layers of modern paint and other substances so the surface is no longer dangerous on the top layer. This method is significantly easier, but does not remove the lead problem entirely, and can create more problems later if additions or other remodeling are considered for surfaces that still have layers of lead paint under them.
1. Containment begins with a very light power-washing, as the surface layer of lead paint needs to stay intact to avoid contamination
2. The wall needs to dry for some time to ensure the following layer is added effectively
3. A liquid enamel substance called Peel-Bond is then added to the walls, where it will expand as it dries, and is a very effective means of filling in spaces between cracks and other imperfections
4. At this point, the top surface is considered safe to work on, and can be covered in any variety of paint or stucco layers
Removal is the process for eradicating all lead based paint on a home, and requires complicated processes for extraction and disposal. The majority of the containment practiced in these methods is done with the use of sealed plastic enclosures called abatement centers. These centers are measured carefully to ensure uniformity and effective use, and are sealed with painter’s tape. The bulk of the removal process for lead paint can be broken down into six steps:
1. Primary abatement centers are set up around all surfaces with lead-based paint to be removed (sizes for these centers vary based on a number of factors, and can be made in very small sections for lesser problem areas)
2. For mostly exterior productions, a secondary layer of abatement center material is required to ensure complete containment and safe disposal
3. All abatement centers are then checked for complete sealing, and caution signs are added where needed to alert passersby
4. Our painters then don full body Hazmat suits along with Latex gloves and specially designed respirators
5. All loose paint must be scraped away before sanding can begin
6. Sanding is either done by hand or by using a mechanized sander (sanders must be fitted with HEPA grade filter to effectively capture airborne particles)
The next step in the process varies greatly between specific projects, as painters will choose to do paint and primer application either before or after abatement center removal, and in sections on a property as necessitated by the location of lead paint problem areas. The process is always concluded, however, following state regulations on disposal of contaminants, and often with the assistance of a safety inspector.
When you’re looking for someone to take care of your lead-based paint problems, there’s really just the one clear choice. Call on the professionals of California Paint Experts to take care of your lead problem with meticulous attention to both quality and safety. Lead is a dangerous substance and should only be handled by professionals you know you can trust. Call today! 619-816-1944