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  QUESTION: Where on the web is wet-scraping & wet-sanding described? 21 Aug 2006 Australia

Hi there,
I have an original corrugated iron stove recess in my kitchen which has flaking pieces of lead paint. I would like to renovate this area to its original standard. I have read about wet scraping. Is this the best method for lead paint removal. Do you have instructions? If not I wonder how wet the paint needs to be. For example, do I simply get a bucket of water and wet rag an area before I chip away at it? I have searched the internet for specific instructions but the best I have got so far is that the wet scraping or sanding methods are the preferred but no instructions.
ANSWER: 24 Aug 2006

Dear Andrew,

The first step is to clear the area of every movable item and lay down plastic sheeting and tape it round the edges. Yes, wet-sanding requires the (ridiculously named) wet-and-dry sandpaper or a good sanding sponge that's designed to be used wet eg Sandmaster. You use a water spray bottle in one hand and the sanding paper or sponge in the other and you water spray a small area of paint before wet-sanding it. Follow this with sugar soaping and rinsing using a sponge or cloth with fresh water in a bucket. For those areas requiring wet-scraping, again, use the water spray bottle in one hand and a scraper in the other and spray a small area with water before scraping so that the paint falls direct to the plastic sheeting without wafting out the window etc. You'll find all the techniques in "Lead Alert - The Six Step Guide To Painting Your Home" - the equipment is described on page 11 and the methods on page 24. The paint just needs to be wet enough with the water spray that no dust escapes when you use the scraper or sanding sponge. I have found this sometimes involves spraying behind large sheets of paint which may be falling off but be dusty behind, while a portion of the paint is still attached.

I hope this helps.
Yours Sincerely
Elizabeth O'Brien

See: Lead and Your Health, Lead in House Paint

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