Rid your home of this toxic additive to keep your loved ones safe from exposure.
By Glenda Taylor and Bob Vila | Updated Jan 6, 2021 10:03 AM
Adding lead pigment to paint started way back in the Colonial era, as it made paint extremely durable. By the mid-1900s, however, health officials became aware of the hazards of lead exposure, including brain and organ damage. Lead paints began to be removed from the market, and were completely banned in 1978—yet lead-based paint can still be found on door and window trim, and on painted stairways, in many homes built prior to that time. If you own an old home and think lead may be present in the paint, you can actually test for lead paint to confirm your suspicions.
The mere presence of lead paint in your home doesn’t necessarily indicate a health risk. If the paint is still in good shape, it can be encapsulated and repainted to protect residents from exposure. The danger from lead paint increases when it’s peeling or otherwise deteriorating, which can lead to the inhalation of lead dust or the swallowing of lead-based paint chips.
If, rather than paint over it, you are planning to remove paint that has tested positive for lead, contact your local building department. Municipalities have strict rules about how the demolition of lead-containing building materials should be handled (and how the debris should be disposed of).
It is always wise to hire an EPA-certified contractor even if you are only removing a relatively small amount of lead paint. In other words: lead paint removal is not a suitable project for average do-it-yourself homeowners. Proper, safe execution of this job requires not only specialized training, but specialized tools and materials as well.
For example, after the job is done, it is essential to clean up the work area with a HEPA vacuum designed for lead dust removal—not your home vacuum with a HEPA filter. HEPA vacuums designed for lead dust removal resemble shop-type canister vacuums; you can purchase one (starting at around $300) or rent from a construction rental store for $35 to $45 per day. (Note: Some local community health centers loan out HEPA vacuums at no charge, or for a small fee, as part of a lead remediation program.)
Remember that when professional, EPA-certified contractors are called in to remove lead paint, they arrive in hazmat suits and masks. It’s unquestionably dangerous work, not to be undertaken lightly—or undertaken at all—by amateurs. Still, some choose to do so anyway, despite the regulations and risks, by carefully and deliberately following a process like the one outlined below, based on EPA recommendations.
Remove furniture, area rugs, and all other items from the room you’ll be working on. Spread 6 mm plastic sheeting over the entire floor, using duct tape to secure it at the edges to the bottom of the walls or to the baseboards. It prevents lead paint chips and dust from contaminating carpeting or sifting through the gaps in hardwood and laminate flooring.
Turn off your HVAC system and use clear plastic or duct tape to cover heating vents and registers. This will keep lead dust from entering your home’s ventilation system. Close any windows in the room to prevent drafts, which can distribute lead dust.
Fill a large plastic bucket halfway with warm water and put it in the room—along with a sponge or rags—where you’ll be removing lead paint. Then seal off adjacent rooms by covering doorways with 6 mil plastic sheeting and clear plastic tape.
Just as important as sealing off your work area is protecting yourself. It is critical to wear a lead-rated respirator mask (not a dust mask). This respirator mask must be fitted with an approved HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filter. You’ll also need to don protective goggles and rubber gloves and be sure to wear old clothing that you can dispose of when you’re done.
Spray areas of chipped or peeling paint thoroughly with a spray bottle filled with water. The key to removing lead paint is to “work wet,” which reduces the risk of inhaling lead dust. Keep your work area relatively small, approximately two to three feet or so, to ensure that the area you’re working on remains wet at all times.
Scrape away loosened bits of paint with a hand scraper. It’s not necessary to remove all the lead paint, just the paint that is peeling or deteriorating. The paint that is still firmly attached can be painted over without scraping.
Spray the area you’re working on with water again, and then sand with sanding sponges if necessary to smooth down rough areas caused by scraping. The same rule applies here: Keep the area wet while you’re working. Wet sanding takes a little longer than dry sanding but it won’t create toxic lead dust.
Wipe and clean the area with a dampened sponge as you go. This will help remove residual lead dust and debris safely. Change the water in the bucket frequently to keep it clean.
Clean up your work area when you’re done scraping and sanding by vacuuming thoroughly with a certified HEPA vacuum—and, we repeat, not a household vacuum with a HEPA filter. Using the wand and nozzle attachment, vacuum right over the plastic sheeting to remove as much loose dust as possible.
Carefully remove the plastic sheeting covering the floor and doorways. Fold its edges into the center to trap any remaining paint chips or particles before rolling up the sheeting and placing it in a garbage bag. It may be permissible to put the bag in your outdoor garbage can for pickup, but it’s a good idea to check with your local waste authority first—a different disposal method may be recommended or required.
When gossip started to spread that a new Windows 11 is in the works, every Microsoft user became curious as to how the new OS will look like and what it will bring to the table.
After speculations, Windows 11 is here. The operating system comes with a new design and feature changes. Besides some additions, it also comes with feature deprecations and removals.
One of the features that aren’t present in Windows 11 is Paint 3D. While it still offers the classic Paint, which is good for drawers, doodlers, and scribblers, it gave up on Paint 3D, which provides additional features and is great for 3D creators.
Why did Microsoft removed Paint 3D?
You might be asking yourself why Microsoft chose to remove some of the features that were available in Windows 10.
So far, Microsoft hasn’t given any precise answer. On the official Windows 11 specs, features, and computer requirements, the tech company says:
When upgrading to Windows 11 from Windows 10 or when installing an update to Windows 11, some features may be deprecated or removed.
But given that earlier this year, Microsoft took the decision to no longer include Paint 3D in an Insider build released on February 24, 2021, for Windows 10, it’s no surprise that the app didn’t make the cut in the new OS.
Among Paint 3D, Microsoft also removed the 3D Viewer app for new Windows installations, after hiding the 3D Objects folder from the main sidebar menu by default in the same Insider build of Windows 10.
And while some features are not installed with Windows 11, others are deprecated since they are no longer considered efficient.
However, you shouldn’t worry about this, as we’ll show you how you can easily enable Paint 3D in the new Windows version.
How can I enable Paint 3D in Windows 11?
Moreover, you can edit your 2D photos with the 3D selection to add some depth and add stickers, textures, or another background to have the best pictures.
But if you truly want to show off your work, you should know that the app offers you the possibility to export a video of your creative process and present it to others.
In the end, when comparing the two, Paint 3D gives you the possibility to create and share really amazing projects with all its cool features and tools, and that makes it an overall better app than the classic Paint.
However, if you’re really interested in 3D apps, you should definitely take a look at the best 3D design software tools.
If you want to find how the new OS differs from Windows 10 as far as the design, interface, features, requirements are concerned, or you’re interested in upgrading, you can take a look at this Windows 11 vs Windows 10 comparison.
Last but not least, we encourage you to keep an eye on us. With the OS released, here you can experience it first hand and take your daily dose of Windows 11.
Longing to uncover an original surface or get rid of unsightly drips? Apply one of the three tried-and-true methods here.
By Bob Vila | Updated Dec 28, 2020 3:48 PM
It’s entirely possible to remove paint from tile, whether you’re simply hoping to banish some accidental splatters or you’ve discovered a wealth of vintage tile beauty beneath a prior paint job.
The right technique for removal depends on the extent and tenacity of the paint you want to be rid of—just bear in mind that if the tiles’ glaze has cracks, flakes, or webbing, any attempt may very well worsen the damage.
No matter which of the following methods you choose to pursue, you can likely restore your tile to its original, paint-free state—and it may be easier than you think!
Note: If your tile has seen better days, skip ahead to Method 3 (and consider replacing the damaged tiles).
- Utility knife
- Heat gun
- Plastic scraper
- Dust mask
- Citrus-based paint stripper
- Rubber gloves
- See full list «
- Safety goggles
Method 1: Scrape It Off
If you’ve been a bit careless during a paint job and need to get rid of splatters, try this method first. Should dried-on paint prove stubborn, however, move on to Method 2. Of course, if attempting to scrape spots in place for decades, wear a dust mask—don’t take chances with potentially hazardous lead-based paint.
Starting in an inconspicuous test area first, hold a utility knife at a 45-degree angle and carefully scrape paint off the tile using a short, firm but gentle stroke. If paint comes up without harming glaze, proceed with confidence. But if you feel or notice any glaze cracking or flaking off, skip to Method 3 in order to best preserve the tile beneath.
Dampen a clean rag with water and wipe the tiles clean. Scrape and wipe till all splatters are gone. If some splatters don’t come off, tackle them with Method 2.
Method 2: Heat and Scrape
A heat gun can help loosen dried, cured paint. Again, with any paint that could pre-date 1978, wear a dust mask for safe breathing as you work.
Work in a small area of about a square foot at a time. Heat the tiles while constantly moving the gun in order to avoid scorching a spot, and continue until the paint feels soft and tacky.
Holding a plastic scraper at a 45-degree angle, remove paint from tile, starting from an outside edge and working your way in. Often, it will lift off quickly in satisfying strips! Be patient when in tricky areas like corners.
Periodically wipe the surface clean with a water-dampened clean rag. Repeat the heat-scrape-wipe procedure until all paint is removed.
METHOD 3: Paint Remover
Use paint remover on stubborn paint or damaged tiles. To purchase the most effective product, tell your hardware store professional the type of tiles and glaze you have; if you’re unsure (or don’t have a sample to show), a citrus-based paint remover, such as Citristrip (available on Amazon) is the least likely to damage glazing while still removing paint from tile. For tiles more than 20 years old, ask your retailer for a conservation-rated paint remover for glazed surfaces. Whatever paint remover you use, ensure that your working area is well-ventilated by opening windows and operating fans.
Clean painted tiles with household cleaner or a 50-50 solution of white vinegar and water. Then wipe with a water-dampened cloth to neutralize the surface. Don your goggles and gloves before you proceed.
In an inconspicuous area, test the tile’s ability to handle the paint remover. Using a clean rag, liberally apply paint remover as recommended by the packaging and let sit for the recommended dwell time.
Scrape off paint with a plastic scraper held at a 45-degree angle. Wipe clean with remover after scraping. If there’s no damage to the glaze, proceed for the remainder of the tile. If there is glaze damage, you can continue but will need to refinish the tiles.
When the paint has been removed to your satisfaction, clean the tiles with warm soapy water and dry with a clean rag.
A Note on Grout
If grouting was never properly sealed, it may be a challenge to remove paint between tiles. Try scrubbing grout with a citrus-based paint remover and a toothbrush, then wipe clean per product recommendation. Repeat several times until you achieve the desired result, but if you’re stymied, you have two options: painting the grout with a specialized paint, or re-grouting. If you successfully remove all the paint stain from the grout, consider re-sealing to protect the lines from future damage.