House Painting And Peeling Question

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|> You're assuming that | > I'm going to be a slob and scrape with no dropcloth, | > then the kids are going to come over and eat the paint? | | I guess that's part of what the EPA is worried about, | because otherwise they wouldn't care what you did with houses | that have old lead paint on the exterior.
Yes. I don't really have a problem with the law. Any contractor with any sense wanted to be careful about lead exposure before the law came into effect, and they still want to now. In general I think the law is about as reasonable as it can be, but it is bureaucratic, and that has its limitations. Following the law is not necessarilly the same thing as being careful about lead exposure.
Rather than looking at me as a contractor who's trying to skirt the requirements, I'd invite you to look at it from your own point of view. The job I'm on right now involves interior painting. There could be lead underneath. I don't know. I know there's none in the top layers because I painted it myself, 12 years ago. The paint is in good shape with almost no loose bits. I can stay under the 6 sq. ft. per room limit on scraping, but not if I sand the woodwork. I could perhaps get by without much sanding, maybe just relying on TSP washing, since the trim is a low sheen. Or I could use toxic methylene chloride sanding liquid and a fumy oil-base underbody if I'm worried about adhesion. Of course, that would also add to the cost of the job. And it's not especially healthy.
Now, imagine you're the customer. You've got a contractor you like and trust. You want him to repaint the interior. There's almost no peeling at all. He tells you, "Sorry, but with this new law it's going to be a lot more expensive. I have to wrap all furniture and HEPA vacuum all surfaces every day." You and he both know that there's no risk of actually being exposed to lead. (You might even know for certain that the house has never had anything but latex paint.) But none of that matters. Neither you nor your contractor has the legal right to make a decision... That's what most of my jobs are like. That's what I was using the opt-out form for.
Next month I need to do repairs and restain on a deck that I built myself. It's on a condo roof. The front half of the condo building is 1800s. The back half, where my customer is, was added in 1983. So I know there's no lead in the condo or on the deck. But according to the law that doesn't matter. The house was built before 1979. But if I work on one of the decks in the other condo building, (there are 2 on the property) which was entirely built in 1983, then I'm in the clear. Same condos. Same wood. Same dates. Same builder. One is subject to deleading-type protocols and the other isn't. A job last month was in an old stone water pump building that was converted to high-end condos about 5 years ago. Every surface inside is new, but the building isn't. So, again, I'd need to cover the whole room in plastic if I want to just, say, change door frame moldings.
What if you were those customers? You'd be paying extra costs pointlessly. I'm grateful this topic came up because I need to stay legal, and I'm grateful to you for your research, but it is a very awkward scenario for me, and for people who want work done at a reasonable cost. A bureaucratic solution is limited by the fact that it can only operate by the letter of the law and doesn't allow for common sense. In the future I may get certified for lead work or I may just limit my jobs. I'm not sure. The certification is not a big deal, but the deleading-style work requirements are a pain in the neck. With many of my jobs I can probably stay under the 6/20 sq ft of disturbed paint requirement, so I might just try to do that.... and hire demo crews for larger renovations.
On the other hand, my back isn't getting any younger. Maybe I should just switch to an easier, more lucrative field, like Certified Lead Testing Technician. :)
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On Tuesday, April 29, 2014 2:39:44 PM UTC-4, Mayayana wrote:

I was never arguing how reasonable the law was, only what it says and why. I don't have lead paint here, but if I did, I'm on an acre lot, with no kids, and I don't eat dirt or paint chips, so I'd be very tempted to do what it sounds like you would, ie take some reasonable steps during work, but not go nuts about it.
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So just a week after your home gets painted. the home is sold, the new family with little kids moves in and the children get mental defects.....
upon investigation the high lead content is discovered..
your family get sued for the lead contamination....
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You too? I never messed with dynamite though, just because of lack of opportunity. Did lots with home made gun powder though (sometimes with some steel pipe), ditto powdered magnesium and also a concoction I used to make with iodine crystals and ammonia (VERY unstable).
I kinda miss the days when you could buy the materials for such goodies at the corner drug store. Maybe you still can?
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| > says and why. I don't have lead paint here, but if I did, I'm | > | > on an acre lot, with no kids, and I don't eat dirt or paint chips, | > | > so I'd be very tempted to do what it sounds like you would, ie | > | > take some reasonable steps during work, but not go nuts about it. |
| So just a week after your home gets painted. the home is sold, the new family with little kids moves in and the children get mental defects..... | upon investigation the high lead content is discovered. | your family get sued for the lead contamination.... |
You really are a fanatic about this, aren't you? We're talking about a case where little if any lead *could* be exposed during painting, because it's under the layer being sanded.
And how is he going to get sued for lead contamination? Anyone who grows a vegetable garden knows that you should never plant it close to the house because there is probably lead in the soil there from earlier painting. (Not only scraping. Sixty-odd years ago house paint was often made on-site by mixing white lead oxide dust with linseed oil.)
There is another solution, though, that might be worthwhile to some people. I'm thinking of checking into it for my own work: If the house is certified lead-free it's exempt from the new law. Alternatively, if a contractor has obtained the required certificate to conform with the new law, they can bypass the requirements if they test all areas that will be worked on and find no lead. I don't know what the cost is of lead-free certification, but it could make sense for some people.
On the other hand, there's also a caveat with that: Where I live, landlords can have adults without children sign a waiver that says they don't know whether there's lead in the house. As I understand it, if they get it tested and find lead then they no longer "don't know", but I'm not sure what the legal ramifications are at that point.
The whole thing is a very awkward and expensive problem. The new lead law was actually passed decades ago, but they apparently only got it passed by promising everyone involved that the law wouldn't go into effect until they were no longer affected by it. In Massachusetts, a landlord who doesn't live in their own house of 3 units or less cannot reject any tenant, yet if a child under 6 y.o. moves in they must pay for the tenants to live somewhere else while the entire unit (and up to 5 " high exterior) is deleaded. Some landlords simply can't afford that, and the state doesn't pay. Further, deleading usually involves ruining the woodwork up to 5' high, so it often makes more sense to just replace all trim, doors and windows in the unit.
What amazes me is that we never learn these lessons. Both electricity and radiation were considered to be possible wonder drugs when they first reached the public. As I understand it, the Romans knew about lead poisoning. We've known about mercury poisoning for hundreds of years, yet new "green" fluorescent bulbs contain mercury. Many years ago I raked blueberries as a job. The pesticide of choice was lead arsenate. The growers would just stop applying it a few weeks before harvest to make the crop safe! I also picked apples. (During my itinerant hippie days.) Those received 12 different sprays. They're considered the most toxic produce product to this day, in terms of residue. We still don't learn. A recent British study concluded there was no notable difference between organic and non-organic foods! These are scientists who should be thinking rationally. Yet they ignore the toxicity of neuro-toxin and mutagenic residues on crops, focussing only on vitamin content. Why? Probably because really coming to terms with the problems of industrial farming is simply such a big issue that the scientists can't bring themselves to think about it. And also because there are close links between powerful government people and big corporations like Monsanto, which has actually patented seeds designed to withstand even more of their toxic pesticides and herbicides ("roundup ready" seeds) and then take non-customer farmers to court for patent infringement when their crop gets infected with roundup ready pollen.
So what do we do? You can't stop eating. We just have to be educated and thoughtful, and do what's reasonable to avoid the toxins. (Hopefully you eat organic as much as possible, don't eat factory food or imported food from 3rd-world countries, don't use moisturizers with parabens, don't eat from cans with BPA lining, and don't use fluorescent bulbs, while you worry about lead paint. And of course, you *have* eliminated your aluminum pans, right? :)
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On Friday, May 2, 2014 11:13:39 AM UTC-4, Mayayana wrote:

your main interest appears to be getting around the law with all sorts of excuses.....
whats worse you talk of scraping and fethering the edge by sanding? wasnt that your comment?
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On 5/2/2014 11:13 AM, Mayayana wrote:

I learned when researching for planting my first full-scale vegetable garden that spinach (don't remember what else) takes up a lot of lead if the soil is contaminated. Dang. Favorite vegetable, but I'm not about to test the garden for lead. Que sera.
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| your main interest appears to be getting around the law with all sorts of excuses..... |
I'm just trying to present a balanced approach and help to clarify the situation and the options. I never expressed support for just ignoring lead issues. *No one is talking about not following the law. The law provides for fines as high as $37,000 per day for infractions. It's no small thing to ignore the law.*
(I was always intending to follow the law and had thoroughly researched it. I just wasn't aware that it had been changed since it took effect. Now that I know about the changes I will no longer use opt-out forms.)
But you consider it "making excuses" to not use deleading protocols when a house has already been tested for lead and found clean? How can that make sense? And what if I get certified and test for lead on my own jobs? You consider that to be "making excuses"?
Do you happen to be a vinyl siding salesman, by any chance? That would explain your implication that everyone in the US is either getting vinyl siding or being sued into the poor house. (And how would a homeowner get sued over a contractor who ignores the law? I don't remember seeing any such provision. Do you know of such a provision? It's my impression that you haven't even read the law yourself.)
Despite your view that the neighborhood kids are all dying from lead paint exposure, you've been silent about the other issues I've brought up: How about if your contractor was going to repaint your living room and you knew that no lead would be exposed? Would you want to pay extra for deleading protocols to be followed, just because that's the law? What about the real-life examples I gave of jobs where the law requires deleading protocols, but I know for a fact that there's no lead because the property was renovated later than 1979? How would you feel about paying an extra 20% if you were one of those customers? And what about all the other common health hazards? Do you not care about those? All of the things I listed are precautions I take myself. (Organic foods, reading labels on moisturizing creams, avoiding BPA, etc.) I'm in no way reckless about environmental hazards. I also run the water for a couple of minutes in the morning before drinking it. Did you know that one of the most common causes of lead poisoning, aside from paint and foreign-made ceramics, is lead solder in water delivery pipes? Do you care about that lead? If not, why not?
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On Friday, May 2, 2014 1:55:55 PM UTC-4, Mayayana wrote:

you admit using a opt out form thats no longer valid, yet you paint homes and remodel them for a living...
I HOPE you know you can get lead tests, that will show if a area is lead free. But stating home was remodeled in 1985 has no proof all the lead was removed.
You dismiss totally the following. You get the property owner to sign a opt out letter thats not valid, some later resident of the home has kids, who get very ill.
The property owner should of disclosed the hazard, but didnt because you convinced them everything was fine......
original property owner can get sued.
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On 5/2/2014 1:55 PM, Mayayana wrote:

I think he has a point. Back in the 1800's a lot of people had lead paint in their homes. They are all dead now.
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On Friday, May 2, 2014 9:50:52 PM UTC-4, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

I service office machines for a living, mostly roll laminators. I have ZERO CONNECTION to any home repair industries...
My neighbor had a home with a bad sewer line. She failed to disclose this at home sale time. The new owner found out when their basement flooded:(
Because the old owner didnt disclose the issue they HAD to pay for a whole new sewer line, and yard and driveway restoration.
So a contractor doesnt follow the law, creates a lead hazard, the home is sold, the new owners kids get ill, the lead is discovered, the old owner and the contractor will both get sued....
follow the law, and sleep well at night...
the penalties are severe because mentally retarded children have troubles for a entire lifetime:(
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Good for you, I wish more people had their heads screwed on straight. Nowadays, people seem to think that the presence of lead/mold/asbestos/tobacco smoke or other baddie du jour is an irrevocable death sentence, too much trouble to just not eat the damn paint.
Not to mention the sizeable number who think the presence of whatever is the drawer to a cash register, goaded, of course, by the class action shysters.
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| I learned when researching for planting my first full-scale vegetable | garden that spinach (don't remember what else) takes up a lot of lead if | the soil is contaminated. Dang. Favorite vegetable, but I'm not about | to test the garden for lead. Que sera. |
I've heard of agricultural labs that will test it for a small fee. I've never tried it myself. I figure that a test of soil in one area doesn't necessarily mean the soil 4 feet away is clean.
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| you admit using a opt out form thats no longer valid, yet you paint homes and remodel them for a living... | | I HOPE you know you can get lead tests, that will show if a area is lead free. But stating home was remodeled in 1985 has no proof all the lead was removed. | | You dismiss totally the following. You get the property owner to sign a opt out letter thats not valid, some later resident of the home has kids, who get very ill. | | The property owner should of disclosed the hazard, but didnt because you convinced them everything was fine...... | | original property owner can get sued.
You're obviously not really reading what I'm writing, but I think I've said my piece clearly enough for others to make their own decisions, so I'll leave it at that.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

As are all the people who used milk paint. That milk stuff just isn't healthy.
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<stuff snipped>

some

Yes, if you make nitrous triiodide, you'd better be scrupulous about wiping the threads of the bottle cap you store it in clean. DAMHIKT - Did you go to the Bronx High School of Science or Brooklyn Tech? (-: They made that stuff by the ton.

Amazon. A pack of water purification tablets is all you really need from them. The rest of the stuff you probably already have. Detailed instructions are, of course, available on YouTube.
We used to paint the deck of the SI Ferry with NI3 and it would pop as people walked on it. One day a huge cop walked over to us and said "Who's gonna be brave enough to fire that cap pistol while *I* am standing here?" We were all looking down in what he probably thought was contrition but we were watching to see if he was going to take one more step and hit the next patch of NI3. He lingered for what seemed like forever and then slowly walked away. Jeez.
We used to get native sodium stored in jars of kerosene. I liked it better than NI3 because you could make it burn in water. Very impressive magic tricks of all kinds with it.
Thermite was even *more* fun and ridiculously easy to make if you had some magnesium ignition wire and a file.
Then there were fireworks. I set off a 2" diameter aerial bomb once which should have gone off with the thunderous report at about 100'. Instead, shortly after I lit it, I heard it launch and then I heard a loud "ding" like the bell on the strong-man hammer machine at the county fair. A second later I heard the sound of the aerial bomb payload hitting the ground a foot away after it had bounced off the lamp. Ka-POW! My ears rang for days. It was a strange experience. I heard the ding and thought "that's not right" but I didn't realize what had happened until the second sound of the payload hitting the pavement and by then, game over dude.
It's a wonder some of us survived childhood.
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Bobby G.



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