Stripping paint from your walls isn’t necessarily as simple as it appears. In addition, it can be dangerous because paint might contain lead or other harmful components. Lead paint was commonly used until 1978, and it is known to have harmful effects, including poisoning. If you aren’t sure what kind of paint is on the walls, it is important to take precautions to make sure that you strip the paint safely. Take a look at the following safety steps for stripping wall paint.
Prepare the Area by Covering the Floors
The first thing you should do is cover the floors. You can use polyethylene plastic and tape to make sure that the entire floor is covered. The flakes and dust that comes off the wall as you work will fall directly onto this drop cloth, and it will be much safer and easier to clean up. Make sure that you place the tape around the edges so that the particles cannot slip down below it.
You will also want to create a sealed exit to the room. You can take the same polyethylene plastic and hang it from the top of the doorway. Then, you can start about six inches below the top and cut a slit all the way down. Hang a second sheet of plastic in front of it, and this will serve as a barrier so that particles do not go out of the room.
Make sure that you cover or remove any furniture from the room. If you leave anything in the room, cover it with the plastic and make sure that you tape the plastic to the floor so that the paint particles do not get through.
Wear Protective Clothing
You should be sure that your entire body is covered by wearing a long sleeved shirt, long pants, shoes that you can wash, and gloves. You can get some of the paper booties to slip onto your shoes so that they have extra protection. You will also want a half mask respirator, which will have a P100 filter. Finally, wear protective eye wear such as goggles or glasses. Make sure that your entire body is protected.
You will work wet because it will reduce the danger of stripping the wall of paint. You should cover any electrical outlets to make sure water doesn’t get inside. You can take a spray bottle and spray the wall as you work, and then you can sand or scrape the paint off the walls. Working wet is much safer, and it is just as effective for removing the paint.
When you finish, you should use a HEPA vac to vacuum all of the particles, chips, and flakes. Then, you can wet a towel and wipe the walls. Make sure that you move in one direction so that you leave the surface clean. When you finish, spray down the polyethylene plastic and carefully remove it. You can vacuum the room once you finish.
Marc Poulos began his real estate and financial services career, but he soon realized that his true passion was beautifying homes. He started working with various small craftsman shops before serving an apprenticeship with the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Chicago. His commitment to excellence won him Top Apprentice from Washburne trade school in Chicago – the country’s premier school of its kind.