As it gets colder and you start spending more time inside, it’s natural to think about ways to improve your home’s interior. Dry air isn’t the only thing you should consider! Is your home lead-safe? This is important, especially if you have young children or are expecting soon.
If your home was built in the 1970s or earlier, have it tested for lead and fix any hazards immediately.
Lead Safety in Your Home
It’s ideal to get a:
Paint inspection: A paint inspection will reveal the lead content of the painted surfaces in your home. This type of inspection should be done:
- When you are buying a home or signing a lease
- Before a renovation project
- To help you determine how to maintain your home for lead safety
Risk assessment: This indicates any sources of serious lead exposure (like peeling paint and lead dust) and explains what actions to take to fix the hazards. This type of test should be done if:
- You want to know if lead is causing exposure to your family
What You Should Do if Your Home Tests Positive for Lead
Your home may test positive for lead, and if this happens, it’s recommended to:
- Flush your pipes before drinking
- Use only cold water for cooking and drinking
- Replace lead-containing plumbing fixtures
- Try other sources of water (such as buying bottled water or using a filter—many water filters are certified for effective lead reduction)
Other Things You Can Do
There are other ways to help make sure your home is lead-safe—many things you can easily do on your own. These include:
- Regularly checking for chipping, peeling, or deteriorating paint, and address issues promptly without excessive sanding. If you must sand, sand the minimum area needed, wet the area first, and clean up thoroughly.
- Regularly checking painted areas that rub together or get lots of wear, like windows, doors, and stairways, for any signs of deterioration.
- Regularly checking for paint chips or dust. If you see any, remove them carefully with a damp paper towel and dispose of them, then wipe the surface clean with a wet paper towel.
- Wipe down flat surfaces, like window sills, on a weekly or bi-weekly basis with a damp paper towel.
- Mop the floors weekly or bi-weekly to control dust.
These steps are especially important if your home was built in the 1970s or earlier.
Need a Lead-Safe Certified Firm in Maryland?
If you need a lead-safe certified firm in the Montgomery County, MD area, call Shanco Companies. Whether you’re getting ready to remodel or have a newborn baby and want to know your home’s risk, call the right professionals!
Contact us to learn more about lead-safe certified contractors and our services in the Gaithersburg, Maryland and the surrounding areas.