Lead Testing & Surveys

Lead is a toxic metal that was used for many years in products found in and around our homes. Lead can also be emitted into the air from motor vehicles and industrial sources, and can enter drinking water from plumbing materials. Lead may cause a range of health effects, from behavioral problems and learning disabilities, to seizures and even death. Children six years old and under are most at risk. If you suspect you have lead in your home or environment, we can help. Give Absolute Resource Associates a call today.

 

NOTE: ARA is the only NLLAP Accredited Laboratory in NH (per EPA list from 8/12)

Facts about lead

  • Lead exposure can harm young children and babies even before they are born.

  • Even children who seem healthy can have high levels of lead in their bodies.

  • You can get lead in your body by breathing or swallowing lead dust, or by eating soil or paint chips containing lead.

  • In most cases, lead-based paint that is in good condition is not a hazard.

  • Removing lead-based paint improperly can increase the danger to your family.

Health effects of lead

Childhood lead poisoning remains a major environmental health problem in the United States!   

 

If not detected early, children with high levels of lead in their bodies can suffer from:

  • Damage to the brain and nervous system

  • Behavior and learning problems, such as hyperactivity

  • Slowed growth

  • Hearing problems

  • Headaches

  

Lead is also harmful to adults. Adults can suffer from:

  • Reproductive problems (in both men and women)

  • High blood pressure and hypertension

  • Nerve disorders

  • Memory and concentration problems

  • Muscle and joint pain

 

Are you renovating, repairing or painting a home, child care facility or school built before 1978?

Beginning April 22, 2010, federal law requires that contractors performing renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb more than six square feet of paint in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 must be certified and trained to follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination.

 

Are you planning to buy or rent a home built before 1978?

Many houses and apartments built before 1978 have paint that contains lead (called lead-based paint). Federal law requires that individuals receive certain information before renting or buying a pre-1978 housing:

  • LANDLORDS must disclose known information on lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards before leases take effect. Leases must include a disclosure form about lead-based paint.

  • SELLERS must disclose known information on lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards before selling a house.

  • Sales contracts must include a disclosure form about lead-based paint.

  • Buyers have up to ten days to check for lead hazards.

  • More information on the lead disclosure program

 

Where lead is found

The Most Common Sources of Lead Poisoning are:

  • Deteriorating lead-based paint
  • Lead contaminated dust
  • Lead contaminated residential soil

 

 

PAINT

The federal government banned lead-based paint from housing in 1978, and some states stopped its use even earlier. Many homes and buildings built before 1978 have lead-based paint, however. If you live or work in an old building, you should have it tested for lead, and pay attention to high traffic areas in which the paint would experience heavy wear and tear, such as windows and window sills, doors and door frames, stairs, railings, and banisters, porches and fences.

 

SOIL

Soil can pick up lead from exterior paint, or other sources such as past use of leaded gas in cars. Lead in soil can be a hazard when children play in the yard inhale the lead dust, or when people bring soil into the house on their shoes. Contact ARA to find out about testing your soil for lead.

 

DUST

Household dust can pick up lead from deteriorating lead-based paint or from contaminated soil tracked into a home. Lead dust can form when lead-based paint is dry scraped, dry sanded, or heated. Dust also forms when painted surfaces bump or rub together. Lead chips and dust can get on surfaces and objects that people touch. Settled lead dust can re-enter the air when people vacuum, sweep or walk through it.

 

WATER

Your home might have plumbing with lead or lead solder. You cannot see, smell or taste lead, and boiling your water will not get rid of lead. If you think your plumbing might have lead in it:

  • Use only cold water for drinking and cooking.

  • Run water for 15 to 30 seconds before drinking it, especially if you have not used your water for a few hours.

  • Call your local health department, water supplier or Absolute Resource Associates to find out about testing your water.

 

YOUR JOB

If you work with lead, you could bring it home on your hands or clothes. Shower and change clothes before coming home. Launder your work clothes separately from the rest of your family's clothes.

 

OTHER POSSIBLE SOURCES OF LEAD

  • Old painted toys and furniture.

  • Food and liquids stored in lead crystal or lead-glazed pottery or porcelain. Food can become contaminated because lead can leach in from these containers.

  • Lead smelters or other industries that release lead into the air.

  • Hobbies that use lead, such as making pottery or stained glass, or refinishing furniture.

  • Folk remedies that contain lead, such as "greta" and "azarcon" used to treat an upset stomach.

 

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