An official website of the United States government.

This is not the current EPA website. To navigate to the current EPA website, please go to This website is historical material reflecting the EPA website as it existed on January 19, 2021. This website is no longer updated and links to external websites and some internal pages may not work. More information »


Can you list specific activities deemed a disturbance of painted surfaces?

Answer: As a general matter, EPA believes that activities that create dust or paint chips are activities that disturb paint.  There is no definitive list of activities that disturb painted surfaces.  Some examples that can disturb painted surfaces include, but are not limited to:

-    Making cut-outs in walls.
-    Replacing a window from the inside or outside.
-    Removing paint with a heat gun.
-    Scraping paint.
-    Removing kitchen cabinets.
-    Removing paint by abrasive sanding.
-    Removal of large structures, including demolition of interior plaster walls.
-    Window replacement.
-    HVAC repair or replacement, including duct work.
-    Repairs resulting in isolated small surface disruptions, including drilling and sawing into wood and plaster.
-    Scuff-sanding.

Question Number: 23002-14867

Find a printable PDF copy of all frequent questions pertaining to lead.

These activities and other activities which disturb paint could be relevant to many trades, such as (but not limited to) renovation, remodeling, general repair, general maintenance, plumbing, electrical work, carpentry, window installation, painting, weatherization work, and more.