In our last couple of articles, we’ve talked about some of the services we offer at Encompass Environmental (you can check out those blog posts here and here). This week, we’d like to keep talking about the things we do for our community. We think it’s important that you understand all of the services we provide and why they matter. It’s our goal to make these articles as informative as we can so that you can make the right decisions. Giving you information about our services and the reason we provide them is one way of helping you understand just how important things like asbestos abatement can be for you and your family. That’s why today we’re going to answer a common question: What is lead paint abatement? It’s one of the most important services we offer, and it might be a more common problem than you think.
What is Lead Paint?
Though many people have heard about the dangers of lead paint, many of them don’t know what exactly lead paint is and what makes it so dangerous. Lead paint is exactly what it sounds like: paint that contains lead, a highly toxic metal that can cause a variety of health problems. Before 1950, many houses used lead-based paint—and even until 1978, people continued to use it to paint houses. But lead has many serious side effects (more on that later). That’s why the Environmental Protection Agency issued laws to prevent contamination from lead-based paint in 2010. Fortunately, lead paint is fairly easy to detect in a home. It only takes simple tests to check whether your home has lead paint. And because of the risks that come with living with lead paint, it’s important to have your property tested.
So why did people use lead paint in the first place if it’s so dangerous? Many different paints actually relied on lead for their color. Paint colors like white and yellow were especially easy to make with lead. In fact, people used “white lead” to paint the interior surfaces of their homes for a long time. But color wasn’t the only reason that people used lead-based paint. Lead also improves the opacity of paint. This means that you can spread the paint out more without being able to see the wall through it. Essentially, this meant that you could use less paint to cover a larger area, which made lead-based paint more efficient. Some types of lead paint were also insoluble in water, which made them water-resistant. Additionally, lead helped combat the acidic properties found in the oils in paint, which made it last longer without cracking.
So What Makes it Dangerous?
Unfortunately, despite its utility, lead is extremely toxic. This is one of the reasons why answering the question “What is lead paint abatement?” is so important. If people don’t realize that it’s a problem, they may not get their home decontaminated and may suffer the side effects of exposure to lead paint. While it’s not dangerous in paint form, when you ingest lead or inhale it through dust, it’s extremely harmful. So if you have lead paint in your home and some of it flakes, it can release lead paint dust into the air. But the biggest problem with lead paint is its effect on children. Small children, who have a tendency to put things in their mouths or bring their hands up to their mouths, are more easily affected by lead paint.
But though children are the most vulnerable, adults can also suffer the effects of lead poisoning. Some of the side effects of exposure to lead in children include kidney damage, brain damage, slowed growth, headaches, and bone marrow problems. As you can see, these are extremely worrisome side effects. In adults, inhalation and ingestion of lead paint can cause symptoms like anemia, kidney damage, high blood pressure, and loss of both vision and hearing. The longer you have lead paint in your home, the more likely it is to flake and cause damage to the people living there, which is why it’s so important to have it tested and removed as soon as possible. If you’re planning on renovating your house, you should also make sure to get it tested—the renovation process can kick a lot of lead paint dust into the air.
What is Lead Paint Abatement?
So who should get lead paint abatement? If you live in a house built before 1978, you should probably test your house for lead paint. Though not every home built at that time used lead paint, the odds get better that your house has lead paint in it the older it is. But there’s no need to panic if you find out that there’s lead paint in your home. Companies like Encompass Environmental offer lead paint abatement. In this process, we perform a risk assessment that consists of an on-site investigation. In this assessment, we determine the presence, location, type, and severity of lead-based paint in your home. We do this so that we can ensure that we use the safest and most thorough process to get rid of the lead paint in your home. Still wondering “What is lead paint abatement?” We recommend checking out this article here.
At Encompass Environmental, our mission is to provide Grand Junction the best quality restoration services. Whether you think your house might be contaminated with meth or your contractor has found out that there’s asbestos in your home, we can help. Our services help make Grand Junction a safer place; the less people have to deal with things like lead paint, the safer our community becomes. Our goal is to make sure that you learn something new every time you visit our blog. It’s important for us to share what we know about our industry, and our staff has years of experience. Ultimately, this means they get the job done right, no matter what it is. So if you think your house might be contaminated—whether it’s with meth, asbestos, or lead paint—be sure to get in touch.
*This post was written by Third Loft Marketing.