Lead Based Paint Inspection – A surface by surface inspection of each component (walls, doors, floors, windows, trim, siding ect.) in the home. This inspection is usually performed with an XRF (X Ray Fluorescence) device because of the need to test the multiple combinations of color paints and varnishes on different substrate materials. Paint chips may be taken instead of using an XRF device or to supplement other readings. The inspection report includes the location and qualitative results of each test. This inspection can only indicate the presence of lead based paint without any recommendations about how to manage the problem. This is the only activity a lead based paint inspector can perform. A risk assessor can also perform this inspection.
Lead Hazard Screening – This inspection includes a visual inspection for deteriorated paint, with testing by XRF or chip sample analysis of each deteriorated area, and a minimum of two dust samples for lab analysis. This is a precursor test to determine the need for another more detailed inspection if lead based paint or lead dust hazard is found.
Risk Assessment – This inspection includes a visual inspection for deteriorated paint, with testing by XRF or chip sample analysis of each deteriorated area, and dust wipe samples for lab analysis of the living areas where children may come in contact with dust. The established HUD protocols dictate a minimum of 6 dust wipe samples for various areas such as floors, window wells and play areas. Also included are a minimum of two composite soil samples for bare soil areas next to the foundation and children play areas. Pet areas are also to be tested. A survey of background information is collected of the occupant usage of the property inspected. All of this information is then used to develop a report on the short and long term options to manage the risk of living in this home. Rough cost estimates are to be included in the report to help evaluate the options.
Clearance Test – This is a visual inspection of the interim or abatement controls that were implemented to limit the lead hazard. Dust wipe samples are usually the primary means for measuring the effectiveness of the control and required cleaning.
Interim Control – Any method that is used to control the lead hazard that will last for less than 20 years. Interim controls should be followed up with a Clearance Test repeated on a scheduled regular basis to evaluate the effectiveness of the interim control. Additional interim controls or abatement may be needed to stop the lead contamination.
Abatement – Any method that is used to stop or control the lead hazard and that will last for more than 20 years. Abatement can include any or all of the following procedures; encapsulation, enclosure, replacement, removal.
Encapsulation – This is a paint coating to contain the LBP. Encapsulation can be an interim control if the coating is warranted for less than 20 years, or abatement if it is warranted for more than 20 years. The condition of the substrate and the adhesion of the underlying paints are considered when this control is part of the risk assessment. Lead based paint may have to be wet scraped or wet sanded to be prepared for encapsulation. Preparation by someone other than a lead abatement worker, supervisor, or project designer could result in serious lead contamination that could cause serious health problems and expensive abatement procedures.
Enclosure – A mechanically attached covering that protects the leaded surface. Examples of this method include sheet-rock, paneling and siding. Full enclosure means sealing the sides of the enclosure material to prevent lead dust from escaping the enclosure materials. Enclosure methods may pose re-contamination risk if remodeling is ever performed.
Replacement – Replacement of components that are lead dust generators such as, wood casement windows and doors, are most often the items that fall into this category. All friction, abrasion and impact areas are suspect. Stair treads, drawers and cabinets all have aspects of friction, abrasion and impacts that may require some control measures.
Removal – Sometimes the lead contamination can only be controlled by physical removal or restrictions to access the contaminated area. Deteriorated lead paint, carpet and soil most often fall into this category. This control is usually the most expensive because of the potential for further lead contamination to people and property. The paint to be removed is considered toxic waste and disposed of in a regulated manner. High lead in soil can also be abated with an impermeable covering such as concrete or asphalt.