Contrary to belief, direct ingestion of deteriorated, lead-based paint is rare and is not the primary source of lead exposure. The most frequent source is from common household dust - transmitted to people by way of dust through hand-to-mouth activities from old, lead-based paint, and from soil and dust "tracked" or "blown" in from outside the home. This soil and dust was previously contaminated by years of exposure to leaded gasolines.
A recent report from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) confirms that lead-based paint that is well-maintained does not present a hazard and is best left undisturbed. If deterioration has occurred, in-place management, although not to be used as a permanent abatement method, is comprised of repainting, regular cleaning, dust control and personal hygiene. This has been shown to be a feasible interim approach for protecting children from lead exposure.
Encapsulation as a form of abatement is gaining support by regulatory agencies as a more practical and cost-effective alternative to removal.
Removal of lead-based paint remains a very expensive option and should take place only when the old, lead-based paint has significantly deteriorated - or if earlier renovations have left lead-contaminated dust in the home. Proper procedures must be followed by a professional contractor, trained in proper lead-based removal, or increased risks by improper removal can create new lead contamination sites.
Bennette Paint manufactures products which do not contain lead as a formulary component. As an approach to encapsulation, Bennette Paint's Acrylic 17 Acrylic Enamel (17 series) provides a non-breathing barrier system, promoting strong adhesion to a variety of paints and substrates.