How Can I Test My House For Lead?

How reliable are home lead test kits?

At the EPA-regulated lead level for paint—equivalent to 0.5 percent of the paint’s formulation, by weight—a kit must accurately produce a positive or negative result 95 percent of the time.

If you want even more reassurance than 95 percent accuracy against a false positive, you can test the same area twice..

How quickly can lead poisoning occur?

What causes lead poisoning? Lead poisoning is usually caused by months or years of exposure to small amounts of lead at home, work, or day care. It can also happen very quickly with exposure to a large amount of lead.

What happens if lead levels are high?

High lead levels in the body can cause problems with the brain, kidneys, and bone marrow (soft tissue inside bones). Symptoms of high lead levels can include belly pain, headaches, vomiting, confusion, muscle weakness, seizures, hair loss or anemia (low red blood cell count).

Should I get my house tested for lead?

You should consider testing for lead if there are children in your home and: Your house was built before 1978, or. Your house is near a freeway or busy roadway where leaded gasoline and its exhaust may have polluted the soil with lead.

Can I test myself for lead poisoning?

A simple blood test can detect lead poisoning. A small blood sample is taken from a finger prick or from a vein. Lead levels in the blood are measured in micrograms per deciliter (mcg/dL). There is no safe blood level of lead.

How can you tell if you have lead paint in your house?

You can generally tell if the paint you are dealing with is lead-based if the sub-layers of paint are still present on a surface and the building was constructed before 1978, or by using a lead paint test kit on the paint in question.

What do you do if you have lead paint on your walls?

What Can I Do If I Have Lead Paint in the House?Immediately clean up any paint chips you find.Keep play areas clean.Don’t let children chew on painted surfaces.Clean dust off of window sills and other surfaces on a regular basis, using a sponge, mop, or paper towels with warm water.More items…•

Is lead poisoning reversible?

Lead is more harmful to children because their brains and nervous systems are still developing. Lead poisoning can be treated, but any damage caused cannot be reversed.

How do you bring lead levels down?

Eat a Healthy Diet to Help Decrease Lead AbsorptionMilk and milk products, such as yogurt and cheese.Green leafy vegetables, including kale and turnip, mustard and collard greens.Calcium-fortified foods, such as orange juice, soy milk and tofu.Canned salmon and sardines.

How can I test my home for lead water?

—01One way to test your home’s water for lead, is to find a testing lab certified by your state’s Department of Environmental Protection. … Step 1: Find a DEP-Certified lab near you by going to this EPA webpage. … You can also find a lab by phone. … Step 2: Pick up a sample container or request that the lab mail it to you.More items…•

What happens if you test positive for lead?

The blood lead test tells you how much lead is in your child’s blood. Lead can harm a child’s growth, behavior, and ability to learn. The lower the test result, the better. Most lead poisoning occurs when children lick, swallow, or breathe in dust from old lead paint.

Do All old houses have lead paint?

Older Homes and Buildings If your home was built before 1978, it is more likely to have lead-based paint. In 1978, the federal government banned consumer uses of lead-based paint, but some states banned it even earlier. Lead paint is still present in millions of homes, sometimes under layers of newer paint.

Does the body get rid of lead?

The body gets rid of lead in the urine and through the gastrointestinal tract. However, many people (and most occupationally exposed workers) are unable to get rid of as much lead as they take in.

What are signs of lead poisoning in adults?

Chronic Poisoning signs and symptomsLoss of short-term memory or concentration.Depression.Nausea.Abdominal pain.Loss of coordination.Numbness and tingling in the extremities.Fatigue.Problems with sleep.More items…•