Lead Based Paint Testing


There are three main approaches for determining the lead content in paint:

1) Test the paint for lead in situ using a chemical test kit.
2) Measure the amount of lead in paint in situ using a portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF)
device.
3) Collect a paint sample and measure its lead content in a laboratory using various
analytical techniques

 

1.Chemical test kits

Strengths 

 Immediate results
 Cheap
 Relatively simple to use

Limitations

Limited accuracy
 Qualitative or semi quantitative
 Can test mainly top (surface) layers
 May need to damage the paint
surface
 Difficult to observe color change
for dark paints

2.Portable X-ray fluorescence spectrometry

Strengths 

 Good accuracy
 Immediate results
 Low use costs
 No damage to the paint surface
 Rapid

Limitations

 Potentially larger margin of error
compared with laboratory analysis
 Requires some training/certification
 Relatively high purchase cost
 Cannot measure lead in small
objects or on highly curved or
intricate surfaces, including many
toys

3.Laboratory analysis

Strengths  

Most accurate method
 Relatively affordable if laboratory is
available and only few samples
 No technical limitations
 Can determine both the soluble and
insoluble lead fractions
 Can be used to analyse new (wet)
paint

Limitations

Paint surface must be disturbed
 Very expensive if equipment must
be purchased and set up
 Requires trained laboratory
personnel and strict quality
assurance measures
 Results are not available
immediately

Call Arizona Environmental Specialists for all your Lead testing needs 480.553.7052

 

 

 

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