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How can homeowners protect themselves and their families from exposure to lead dust if they plan on doing their own renovations?

The Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule does not impose requirements on homeowners performing renovations in their own homes.

If you do decide to do a renovation yourself, it's very important to take precautions to protect you and your family from exposure to lead dust. EPA recommends that you follow these simple procedures:

  • Contain the work area so that dust does not escape from the area. Cover floors and furniture that cannot be moved with heavy duty plastic and tape, and seal off doors and heating and cooling system vents;
  • Keep children, pregnant women, and pets out of the work area at all times;
  • Minimize dust during the project by using techniques that generate less dust, such as wet sanding or scraping, or using sanders or grinders that have High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) vacuum attachments which capture the dust that is generated; and
  • Clean up thoroughly by using a HEPA vacuum and wet wiping to clean up dust and debris on surfaces and wet mopping the floors with plenty of rinse water before taking down plastic over doors, windows, and vents.

For more specific information on how to perform renovation, repair, and painting projects safely in your own home, visit or call the National Lead Information Center at 1-800-424-LEAD.

Question Number: 23002-16166

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