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QUESTION: The best method for removal of lead based paint from the exterior of a 'shiplap' weatherboard house.  05 Jan 2004, New South Wales Australia

I would like advice on the best method for removal of lead based paint from the exterior of a 'shiplap' weatherboard house (1930's). Much of the paint is chipped and will need to be removed.

ANSWER: 23 Jan 2004

Dear Madam,

It may be a surprise but the best method I'm told of removing lead paint from weatherboards is by heatgun - though there are a number of conditions which must be met to ensure it is done in a lead-safe way. Ensure the heat gun has temperature control and set it at the lowest temperature. Remove everything removable from the area and lay plastic sheeting over the ground and tape it to the foundations or weight it with bricks on the outside edge. Ensure anyone who doesn't need to be there is absent, including pets. Ensure the operator wears a well-fitted respirator and doesn't hold the heatgun in any one spot for too long. Scrape the heated paint off the weatherboards onto the plastic and ensure it isn't crushed underfoot and walked off the plastic but it is gathered up and double-bagged in plastic prior to disposal in the rubbish bin.

I trust this helps but for more detail, please refer to The Six Step Guide To Painting Your Home

Good luck with the work.
Yours Sincerely
Elizabeth O'Brien

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