Reducing Lead-Based Paint Hazards Using A Combination Of Abatement And Interim Control Techniques On Windows

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We’ve reviewed these procedures for general consistency with federal standards for rehabilitating historic buildings and provide them only as a reference. Specifications should only be applied under the guidance of a qualified preservation professional who can assess the applicability of a procedure to a particular building, project or location. References to products and suppliers serve as general guidelines and do not constitute a federal endorsement nor a determination that a product or method is the best alternative or compliant with current environmental regulations and safety standards.


The 1995 Housing And Urban Development (HUD) guidelines regarding the evaluation and control of lead-based paint hazards were developed in order to provide guidance in lead abatement/reduction work required for federally assisted housing projects. Though these guidelines are not enforced on private housing projects or projects involving other building types, they are a well-recognized reference for making buildings lead-safe, and their use as a resource is recommended in any construction project requiring lead- reduction work. For this reason, these guidelines are frequently referenced in this and other related procedures.

This procedure includes guidance on removing lead-based paint from windows using a combination of abatement techniques and interim control techniques.


  • Abatement is classified by HUD as any treatment for eliminating lead-based paint that is considered permanent, or rather, capable of lasting twenty years. This may include any of the following: Complete removal of the lead-based paint; removal and replacement of the lead-based paint component; enclosure of the component or surface; or application of an encapsulant coating.
  • For historic buildings, "Hazard Abatement" is recommended and involves eliminating the hazard rather than the entire feature or all of the lead-based paint. This type of action is more economical and serves to protect more of the original building fabric from being damaged or destroyed. Hazard abatement may be achieved by means of removing paint from SELECTED surfaces, removing SELECTED features, encapsulating DETERIORATED painted surfaces, removing and replacing CONTAMINATED soil, and disposal of all hazardous waste according to federal, state and local safety regulations.

Interim Controls:

Interim controls are temporary methods of controlling lead-based paint hazards and include special cleaning and dust removal procedures, stabilization of the existing paint film, and special treatment of friction and impact surfaces. Abatement, on the other hand, is considered to be a permanent treatment for eliminating lead-based paint and may include complete removal of the paint or the feature/component itself. Interim control techniques are preferred over abatement in preservation work since more original material can be retained and preserved. However, regular maintenance is required and necessary in order for this type of strategy to be successful. For guidance in evaluating mitigation strategies for lead-hazard reduction, see 09900-03-S. For general protection measures in lead-based paint hazard-reduction work, see 09900-10-S. For guidance in reducing lead-based paint hazards for windows using abatement techniques only or interim control techniques only, see 09900-02-R and 09900-03-R respectively.

Interim controls, such as treating friction surfaces, combined with jamb enclosure, are a cost effective means of lead-hazard control. This method is preferable when complete treatment of all friction surfaces is too time consuming and therefore too costly to achieve. Jamb liners, made of vinyl or aluminum, are installed in the jamb to cover the channel between the sash and the jamb. Trimming the sash to fit within the jamb enclosure may be required.

Some visual integrity is compromised using jamb liners, but it is minimal. Using this alternative, the original sash can be retained as well as the existing pulley and sash weight system.

Sash replacement may be combined with interim control techniques, such as paint stabilization or selective paint removal. See 09900-03-R for guidance in using interim control techniques.

Sash replacement is only recommended if they are heavily deteriorated. Sash replacement is costly and results in a loss of original fabric. This practice, therefore, is only recommended if the sashes are heavily deteriorated (see 09900-02-R). However, given the appropriate circumstances and combined with temporary treatments, sash replacement may be an appropriate alternative to lead-hazard control.


Paint stabilization combined with window trough enclosure is often an appropriate method of lead-hazard control, if the trough is in good condition.

A window trough or well is the horizontal surface area between the sash and the storm frame. These areas are prone to lead dust accumulation and should be cleaned frequently. If the window trough is in poor condition, it is advisable to thoroughly clean the trough and then install an aluminum or wood liner to cover the trough - nailed and caulked in place.

Wood is more expensive, but preferable in preservation projects. With wood, it is also possible that the sash may need to be trimmed slightly to allow for the thickness of the wood.