Get advice about lead on your property

If you’re concerned your home contains the material, seek guidance or have tests conducted before you try to remove it.

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What you need to do

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Important considerations

Lead is toxic to humans, particularly children and pregnant women.

If you are renovating or repainting a home built before 1970, you may be risking exposure to lead. You could even be exposed if the old paint is flaking or chalking or has been damaged.

The older your home, the more likely it contains lead-based paint. Paints used in the 1960s contained more than 1% lead and in the 1950s, indoor and outdoor paints could contain as much as 50% lead. It wasn’t until 1970 that the lead content of paint was limited to 1%.

Risks of exposure

It’s not just the paint on your walls that can be contaminated with lead. Lead was also commonly used to solder pipes.

Household dust can also contain lead particles from deteriorating lead-based household paint, contaminated soil or dust brought into the house on your shoes or your pets' feet. Soil can become contaminated with lead by deteriorating lead-based paint or its removal. If the paint is in good condition, it may be safer to cover it than remove it.

Rainwater from water tanks may have increased lead levels if lead-containing dust has contaminated the roof or guttering, or by leaching lead from the roof and pipes.