is your home free of lead-based paint hazards?

Nearly 900,000 children under 6 years of age are estimated to have elevated blood lead levels, which may cause damage to a child’s developing brain.

Lead poisoning can cause problems in children such as learning disabilities, hearing difficulties, and growth retardation. People can get lead in their bodies by breathing or swallowing lead dust or by eating soil or paint chips with lead in them.

To protect your family, you should:

  • Have your home tested for lead paint if it was built before 1978.
  • Ask your child’s doctor or your health department if your child should be tested for lead.
  • Know that the primary source of lead exposure is through lead based paint that is peeling, chipping, chalking, or cracking. This contaminated paint can be a hazard when found on surfaces that children can chew or that get a lot of wear-and-tear. These include windows and window sills, doors and door frames, stairs, railings, banisters, porches, and fences.
  • Know that lead dust is also hazardous. It can form when lead-based paint is dry scraped, dry sanded, or heated. This dust can get on surfaces and objects that people touch. Settled lead dust can reenter the air when people vacuum, sweep, or walk through it. Lead dust is ingested primarily through hand-to-mouth contact.
  • Know that drinking water can be contaminated by lead solder in the pipes. If you suspect that you might have lead in your plumbing, call your local health department to find out about testing your water.

For More Information:

  • Visit HUD's Lead Information Center.
  • Call the National Lead Information Center and Clearinghouse at 1-800-424-LEAD (1-800-424-5323 TDD: 1-800-526-5456).
  • For a list of certified lead inspectors, call 1-888-LEAD-LIST, or visit the website at
  • Call the US Environmental Protection Agency’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-426-4791, or visit its web site at
  • Call the US Consumer Product Safety Commission’s hotline at 1-800-638-2772, or visit their web site at TDD: 1-800-638-8270.








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