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Cedar Paneling Over Lead Paint

I have a small closet that I'd like to cover with cedar tongue and groove panels. Some of the current paint on the closet walls (wood and plaster walls) is chipping off. (It actually looks like the old home owners painted on top of newspaper stuck to the walls, which is now peeling off). I used a home testing kit and sure enough, some of the peeling paint has lead in it.

Should I call a lead abatement team? Or can I just cover over the lead paint with the panels? I'd like to just cover over, but this changes my strategy. I had originally planned on using construction adhesive to glue the panels to the wall, but now think I have to nail and drill into the wall. But won't this release more lead particles into the air?


A. Spruce
Re: Cedar Paneling Over Lead Paint

I would NOT involve an abatement company, that is a very expensive proposition.

What I would recommend is that you use an elastomeric paint to seal the lead in. Encapsulation is a valid and highly used method to control lead issues. I would then recommend installing 1x2 sleepers over plaster and then nail your cedar to the sleepers, this will be much easier than trying to drill/nail each plank to plaster. The sleepers could be glued and/or nailed/screwed to the plaster, since you're not doing anything structural. Once the planks are in place, run a piece of molding in each corner to lock the plank walls in place.

Re: Cedar Paneling Over Lead Paint

Lead concern is the cause du Jour right now, as asbestos has been and continues to be. I sometimes think it is Chicken Little yelling the sky is falling! I have been around long enough to have put lots of lead paint on homes and then been around to prep it for further painting. I am still kickin'! I don't mean to discount the real dangers of lead abatement, but a little reason is called for. Even contractors can disturb 6 square feet of lead paint before the stringent lead containment rules kick in. Private homeowners are kind of on their own.

Certainly, if small children, for whom the real danger exists, are in the home, steps should be taken to control the lead. Contain the dust and mop up the residue. Wear a good lead rated mask and wash your work clothes right away in a separate washload. Otherwise, proceed as Spruce has suggested. Spruce's advice can be relied upon, except when it comes to paint brands and quality :p

A. Spruce
Re: Cedar Paneling Over Lead Paint
ordjen wrote:

Spruce's advice can be relied upon, except when it comes to paint brands and quality :p

Now, now, don't be killing the messenger! :D:p

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