Getting testy

No, I am very sorry. This post is not another funny post about Ryan. The testy I am referring to is not Ryan’s temper, but lead paint testing. Is it weird that I was REALLY excited about finally doing this? Yes? Did you just nod your head in confirmation? Okay, fine. Perhaps looking forward to a lead paint test was and still is a little strange, but I was.

We picked up this lead pain testing kit at Lowe’s for about $10.  

This kit came with 8 testing swabs and gives you an answer in 30 seconds. It is a perfect test if you are impatient, in a hurry, or have a thousand other things you need to be doing.  Oh wait, we are all of those! Ryan and I decided just to focus on the paint downstairs, leaving us with about nineteen colors…just kidding 🙂

To get started, take the testing swab and pinch on point A and point B. Please forgive my nasty finger nails.

This releases the liquid inside (kind of like a glow stick/band). Then, you shake the swab for 5 to 10 seconds and gently squeeze on the swab until a yellow liquid begins to come out of the foam end (sorry I don’t have a picture of this).

Once the test liquid is coming out, we begin rubbing a small area of paint.

NOTE: I highly encourage you to clean off a test area first, so your entire test swab does not turn brown like mine did! Oops!

If the paint does NOT contain lead, it will stay an orange/yellow color.  If the paint DOES contain lead, the swab will turn pink or red.

At first, I was a little nervous I wouldn’t be able to notice a difference between the yellowish-orange and pinkish-red, largely because of the massive amounts of dirt in our house. The first test came back….

NEGATIVE! NO LEAD PAINT! Wahoo! The peach and pink paint were both lead free. There might have been some high fiving and dancing. No pictures of that thankfully…

We continued our way around downstairs. Six test swabs later, we only had one paint color come back positive. Want to guess which one?

Not the flourescent orange.

If you guessed green you would be correct! Green was our only culprit (downstairs at least). We can now invite todlers, children, and dogs into our home to lick the non-green walls without fear of them falling over dead from lead paid poisoning. I will sleep much better now, ha! On a serious note, this will make my job of stripping paint (whenever the heck that happens) a little easier, or it will at least require less protective gear. Perhaps “easier” is not the appropriate term. Lead paint is something any homeowner can remove without the help of a professional. I will be sure to share details when that time comes.

For those who may be curious after I mentioned the contractor estimate last week, we did receive it. Ryan nor myself passed out after reading it, even thought it was a pretty shocking number.  I did almost fall out of my bed though! I am one of those who uses my phone as an alarm/gps/radio/mp3 player/book/computer/game-station/camera. So when I hit my alarm/phone in the morning, I also check my e-mail, ya know, just incase anything life changing popped into my inbox in the middle of the night. Usually, there is nothing, but on that morning there was the contractor estimate. I opened it, scrolled through all the mumbo-jumbo to the final number at the bottom. BAM!

That’s when I almost fell out of bed. I then broke out my calculator…um…also on my phone. Side note to all of the elementary teachers who said I would never carry a calculator in my pocket, therefore, I needed to learn math – WHO IS LAUGHING NOW PUNKS?!?! I do have a calculator in my pocket, thank you very much. Anyways, back to the estimate. I did a little quick math and realized it is where we needed it to be in order to get enough money from the bank. We should know more in the next 1 to 2 weeks about the loan amount. Fingers crossed!

I will be back to post our work from Saturday later this week. Have you ever worked on removing lead paint before? Have you done any paint stripping at all? It’s not glamorous by any means. One of our neighbors actually stopped by and brought us some paint stripper on Saturday, so that was pretty cool. You can check out their renovation here!  

Thanks for reading! Have a good Monday 🙂


6 thoughts on “Getting testy

  1. Hope there’s not too much of that green to deal with. It’s great that most of your house is “unleaded”. YAY!
    I have stripped many times. ahhhhh, well,….. not in public of course! HA HA. Seriously, I actually like stripping paint. Weird, I know. There’s something about watching all that gook just melt off.
    Have fun and wear eye gear and gloves so it doesn’t splash in you eye. (wink)

  2. They actually make a paint stripper that neutralizes the lead to make it safe for removal but it is expensive. I would just stick to that Star 10 stuff and make sure to have a HEPA rated mask and disposable coveralls when you do it.

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