Lead Frequently Asked Questions

Lead poisoning is the main consequence of being exposed to lead based paint, especially for children. It is crucial to know the status of your home and to clear all lead paint from your premises. Please allow S.A Barcia Inspections, LLC know if there are any other questions that we may answer for you.

Q. Is breathing in lead bad for you?

Lead poisoning occurs when lead is ingested. Breathing in dust that contains lead can also cause lead poisoning. Lead does not have a smell or taste, and it is not visible to the naked eye. In the United States, lead used to be common in house paint and gasoline.

Q. Enviornmental: What are sources of lead exposure?

Paint: Lead was used in house paint until it was banned in 1978. Dust and paint chips can be generated whenever it deteriorates or is scraped or sanded.

Soil: Lead was widely used in gasoline until 1974, when a gradual regulated phase out began. Lead can be found in high concentrations in the soil surrounding high traffic routes as a result of leaded gasoline fallout. Lead can also be found in the soil surrounding buildings or structures painted with lead-base paint.

Water: Drinking water may contain lead due to the use of lead pipes or lead solder. The use of lead pipes and solder (for potable water supplies) was banned in 1987.

Q. What is considered to be an unacceptable level of lead in paint?

Lead-based paint is defined by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as any paint that contains more than 0.5 percent lead by weight (or about 1 milligram per square centimeter of painted surface). This is the "action level" at which the EPA recommends removal of lead paint is it is deteriorating and chipping.

Q. Why is lead dangerous?

The effects of lead-poisoning on children can be devastating. Irreversible learning disabilities as well as lowered intelligence are the usual result. Lead poisoning occurs when lead has been introduced into the bloodstream by ingestion and inhalation of lead dust or fumes. Our bodies cannot distinguish lead from other minerals, like iron and calcium, which our bodies actually need, and sends it directly to vital organs. Lead is then deposited in these organs as well as our brain and bone marrow. Women of childbearing age and children under the age of six are considered to be at the highest risk.

Q. Why are pregnant women and children at such a high risk?

Pregnant women are at a high risk for lead poisoning because any lead that they are exposed to transfers directly to the unborn baby. The main reason for this is the way a child's body assimilates lead (mistaking it for a vital nutrient). In addition, children (both unborn and born) have bodies which are still developing, and are at a low body weight. Hence, small children have a high rate of hand/ toy to mouth contact.

Q. Most common ways that lead may enter your child's body.

  • Putting hands or toys with lead dust on them in their mouths.
  • Eating lead paint chips that peel off the wall.
  • Chewing on window sills, door frames or any other lead painted surface.

Q. What are the symptoms for lead poisoning?

  • Loss of appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Joint and muscle aches
  • Lack of concentration
  • Learning disabilities
  • Hyperactivity
  • Hearing dysfunction
  • Nausea
  • Wrist or foot drop
  • Anorexia
  • Anemia
  • Seizures
  • Colic
  • Convulsions
  • Tremors
  • Moodiness
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Miscarriage

Q. What are the long term effects of lead poisoning?

Lead poisoning can lead to a variety of health problems in kids, including: decreased bone and muscle growth, poor muscle coordination, damage to the nervous system, kidneys, and or hearing.

Q. Can you die from lead poisoning?

Some of the effects are permanent. In severe cases anemia, seizures, coma, or death may occur.

Q. How will I know if there is lead paint in my home?

You will need to have your home tested by a licensed lead inspector. We can thoroughly check you home for the presence of lead paint and provide you with documentation.

Q. How does the lead Inspector conduct the inspection?

Your home will be inspected thoroughly and tested for lead through, XRF analysis, Paint Chip sampling, and  Dust Wipe sampling. Then, we will generate a record of any and all lead hazards on a detailed report.