We can complete inspections for lead paint, AB2370 testing for child care centers, provide recommendations for addressing potential issues, and prepare maintenance plans to manage the remodeling, cleaning and repairs of a home to prevent lead contamination exposure.

What is Lead?

Lead is added to paint to speed up drying, increase durability, maintain a fresh appearance, and resist moisture that causes corrosion.  Although it is useful, it has also been found to be toxic to humans and animals.  It is one of the main health and environmental hazards associated with paint and ceramic tile. Lead can be found in many areas of our environment including air, soil, water, and also our homes.

Where is Lead Commonly Found?

The most common applications of asbestos found in residential buildings are identified below:

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Health Effects

Whether it’s inhaled, swallowed, or, more rarely, absorbed through the skin (just by touching a product that contains lead), lead can act as a poison. You cannot smell or taste lead. It is not visible to the naked eye. Lead is particularly dangerous because once it gets into a person’s system, it is distributed throughout the body just like helpful minerals such as iron, calcium, and zinc.

How Can Lead Be Harmful and Dangerous?

The health hazards primarily related to high levels of lead in the blood stream are:

Inspection & Testing

Our lead consultants can assist you in a number of ways:

Baer Environmental Consultants’ reports clearly identify whether the inspected property contains lead based paint and identify the locations and condition of all positive components. The reports will discuss testing procedures, applicable regulatory limits and regulations, and cost effective treatment options if lead based paint is found. Our reports can be sent to lead abatement contractors to have them provide cost estimates to abate or control any found lead.

Baer Environmental Consultants performs all Lead Based Paint (LBP) inspections and risk assessments in accordance with all state and federal guidelines for the evaluation and control of LBP. All our technicians are certified as inspector/assessors via the California Department of Public Health Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Branch. Our inspectors will perform a surface by surface investigation for the presence of lead based paint in all building components in the interior and on the exterior: walls, doors, windows, baseboards, ceilings, eaves, rafters, fascia, baseboards, ceramic tile etc. Sampling procedures available are: dust swab, paint chip, analyzers, soil or air samples.

Clearance Testing

Do I need Clearance testing after work is completed?

Yes, dust wipe analysis protects all parties involved; the contractor, homeowner, and building residents. The clearance process provides the contractor with an impartial determination that the project was completed safely. The owner will have assurance that any amounts of leaded dust remaining in the house are at safe levels. Residents can be certain that the home is safe for them and their children.

After any lead hazard control activity, a lead clearance examination should be conducted. A lead clearance typically includes a visual inspection to make sure lead-based paint hazards have been properly addressed. Dust sampling methods are then used to verify that lead-contaminated dust has not been generated and spread during lead hazard control activities. The dust wipe sample would generally be taken on the floors, window sills and horizontal surfaces. In addition, air sampling can also be performed to test the air for lead content. The Clearance Test confirms whether the contractor/painter took all necessary precautions to contain the work area, and clean it. If a lead hazard is still found to be present, the contractor must re-clean the work areas, and adjacent areas via wet methods and HEPA vacuuming until the work area has been cleared.

Interim Controls and Lead Abatement

If lead-based paint hazards are identified, you’ll be given suggestions for safely dealing with the problem. If the suggestions include paint or ceramic tile removal then a state certified lead abatement company must perform the work.

Hiring a licensed lead abatement contractor will help keep you and your family safe from dangerous lead exposure.


Your assessment may find lead-based paint in your home that is in good condition and does not currently pose a health risk. In this case, you’ll probably be advised to monitor the condition of the paint from time-to-time using Interim Controls.

Interim Controls is considered the more “temporary” solution, and usually includes repairing any substrate damage, removal of loose paint, surface preparation, and application of a heavy duty coating, called an encapsulate, which will seal the LBP better than your typical paint or primer. Interim controls are typically a more cost effective solution to controlling lead hazards and can be a very efficient, although not permanent option.

In addition your assessment may find lead-based paint to be in a damaged condition where it is flaking and/or peeling. You would then be advised to have this type of paint abated.

Lead Abatement a “permanent” solution when addressing lead hazards. Lead abatement most often refers to the actual removal of the LBP covered component itself. Another form of lead abatement is called enclosure. Enclosure is the process of permanently covering up and sealing the LBP covered components. An example of enclosure would be installing and sealing new vinyl siding over old LBP covered wood siding.

What you should know when hiring a contractor

California Contractors may NOT test paint for lead. Only California Certified Lead Inspector/Risk Assessors may take lead paint, dust or soil samples in public or residential buildings. In addition, RRP contractors may NOT test paint in California. They must presume that any untested surface coating in all pre-1978 structures is lead based paint (LBP). This applies to everyone in the state – not just contractors. This also applies to all structures – not just Target Housing and Child-Occupied Facilities. Any time work is performed in a pre-1978 structure in California that has not been tested, you must presume all surfaces are covered with lead-based paint.

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Regulations & Resources

Does EPA Recommend Test Kits For Paint, Dust, Or Soil Testing?

No. EPA does not currently recommend home test kits to detect lead in paint, dust, or soil. Studies show that these kits are not reliable enough to tell the difference between high and low levels of lead. At this time, the kits are not recommended for testing performed by either homeowners or certified lead-based paint professionals.


The RRP law requires contractors to have painted surfaces tested BEFORE beginning a project, where paint will be disturbed, or must assume it contains lead.

As of April 22, 2010, any company performing renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb painted surfaces in residences, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 must be EPA RRP certified and must follow specific “lead safe work practices” to prevent lead contamination.

The EPA RRP rule applies when more than 6 square feet of painted surfaces per room, or 20 square feet of exterior painted surfaces will be “disturbed”. If the paint tests negative, the RRP rule no longer applies.

Individual property owners and landlords performing renovations or repairs on pre-1978 housing are also required to become Lead Certified Renovators to be in compliance with the RRP law.

Learn More About Lead

EPA Lead Information

Child Hood Lead Prevention Branch

EPA Learn About Lead

Renovation Repair and Painting RRP Rule

California Department Of Public Health Regulations

OSHA Lead Standards

Lead Quick Facts