Lead exposure is still a very prevalent issue in the United States coming both from lead based paint and lead dust encased in brick, concrete or wood of older industrial buildings. Every week we help people on both sides of the issue – environmental remediators and architects working to renovate and paint over lead in older buildings and families that have just moved to homes that have tested positive for lead. The main goal in all cases is to ensure the surface is properly abated, either through removal or encapsulated with a lead encapsulating paint, so it tests negative for lead and is safe for occupants.
Lead Abatement Regulations
In recent years, countries such as Canada and the UK have also been paying attention to the dangers of lead dust and lead-based paint and creating standards to ensure the safety of their citizens. LeadX lead encapsulating paint by Syneffex has been used for projects in both the UK and Canada as well as for countless projects in the United States.
Lead in Homes
If a home was built before 1978, there is a good chance it has lead-based paint. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the federal government banned consumer uses of lead-containing paint in 1978, and some states banned it even sooner. Lead from paint, including lead-contaminated dust, is one of the most common causes of lead poisoning. The EPA chart below shows how likely a home is to contain lead-based paint based upon the year it was built.
Children are especially susceptible to lead poisoning from areas such as window sills, doors, railings, etc.. This is what makes a white, tinted, or clear lead encapsulation coating, such as LeadX, so important. It is easily applied over these surfaces at a simple 2-coat application to act as a lead sealant and allow a lead paint test on the surface to test negative for lead exposure. LeadX is a safe lead encapsulation paint that prevents lead exposure and is water-based and non-toxic.
Lead in Commercial Buildings
Often older buildings which are being rehabilitated for use, such as an old factory being updated for retail and residential housing space , will test positive for lead either from lead-based paint or lead dust that’s settled in the brick, concrete, metal, or wood surfaces over the years.
Many of the large projects that LeadX lead encapsulating paint is used for are large buildings or complexed that hold multiple buildings that are being renovated and have to have all surfaces abated for lead. LeadX is often specified into these over our competitors due to a few different factors:
- Competitive price per S.F.
- Clear, white, and custom color options (paint & abate in one product!)
- Easy to work with
- Smooth, matte finish
- Additional benefits of mold, UV, and moisture resistance.
To help project managers and building owners understand their requirements when it comes to remediating lead in commercial buildings, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency provides a Framework for Identifying and Evaluating Lead?Based Paint Hazards from Renovation, Repair, and Painting Activities in Public and Commercial Buildings.
Lead Poisoning Symptoms
While lead poisoning can initially be difficult to detect, there are some symptoms that start to become prevalent after lead exposure when lead begins to accumulate in the system in dangerous amounts. According to the Mayo Clinic, some of these are:
The signs and symptoms of lead poisoning in children may include:
- Developmental delay
- Learning difficulties
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Sluggishness and fatigue
- Abdominal pain
- Hearing loss
The signs and symptoms of lead poisoning in adults may include:
- High blood pressure
- Abdominal pain
- Joint pains
- Muscle pain
- Declines in mental functioning
- Pain, numbness or tingling of the extremities
- Memory loss
- Mood disorders