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Lead-Safe Wisconsin: Renovation Videos

This page contains short videos that show how to:

  • Safely set up and clean renovation worksites.
  • Test for lead in paint.
  • Use personal protective equipment (PPE).

Certified lead-safe renovators can use the videos to train staff. Homeowners can use them while planning their own lead-safe renovation work.

The videos have audio narration. You can find a transcript and supply list to accompany each one.

Remember that contractors must be trained and certified to conduct renovation, repairs, and painting in homes and child care centers built before 1978. You can find more information on our Wisconsin’s Lead-Safe Renovation Rule and Lead-Safe Renovation Rule FAQs pages.

Exterior work

The Exterior Work Practices video shows how to:

  • Set up an exterior work area to contain dust and debris.
  • Use signs and barriers to keep others out of the work area.
  • Clean up when work is finished and at the end of each day.
  • Make sure the final cleaning is thorough.

Length of video: 9 minutes, 6 seconds

  • Barrier tape
  • Cleaning wipes
  • Cutting tool
  • Disposable tack pad
  • Duct tape
  • Flashlight
  • Garbage bag
  • High-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) vacuum
  • Orange cones
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Tape measure
  • Warning signs

Establishing exterior containment

Before you begin, close all doors and windows below or within 20 feet of the work area.

Step 1: Cover the ground with plastic sheeting at least 10 feet in all directions from the actual location of the paint disturbance. If your work is not being conducted on the ground floor, make sure you use enough plastic to contain any debris that may be created from the renovation work.

Depending on your work scenario, 10 feet of horizontal plastic sheeting may not be adequate or possible. In this case, you should consider using vertical containment or extending your horizontal containment.

Step 2: Secure the plastic to the side of the building. This will create a good seal to keep debris out of soil.

If you’re going to be using a ladder on the plastic, you can cut holes for the feet through the plastic so the ladder is stable on the ground. However, make sure you tape around the legs to maintain the containment, and any time you move the ladder you’ll need to patch the holes with duct tape.

Step 3: Weigh down the sides with two-by-fours, bricks, or stakes to keep the containment secure. Curbing the plastic by rolling it over two-by-fours will create an additional barrier to prevent dust and debris from blowing off the plastic.

Additionally, you can use spikes with washers and weights to keep the plastic from ballooning in wind or sliding around in the grass. Anything you use to hold down the plastic that is not completely wrapped into the plastic will need to be thrown away.

Step 4: Place barrier fencing around the perimeter of the work area 20 feet from the work surface and on all exposed sides.

Step 5: Place a disposable tack pad in the corner of the plastic sheeting nearest the work area entryway to control tracking dust off the plastic.

Step 6: Establish an entry point to the work area and place a sign that reads, “Warning, Lead work area, No smoking or eating.”

Step 7: Stage all the tools, supplies, and equipment you will use to conduct the renovation, repair, or painting work on the plastic sheeting to avoid contaminating the area outside the work area.

Wrapping components for disposal

After your work is completed, workers need to wrap and seal or bag all components and other large materials created during the renovation. HEPA vacuum the wrapped objects and remove them from the work area.

HEPA vacuum all tools before removing them from the work area.

Exterior final cleaning

Step 1: Clean the plastic sheeting using a HEPA vacuum (although this is not required, it is a lot faster than wiping up the dust and debris by hand with cleaning cloths). Clean every surface in the work area from top down and from the innermost point in the work area toward the established entryway.

Step 2: Mist the plastic sheeting and fold the dirty side inward. Once it’s gathered, you can either tape and seal the edges or place the folded sheeting in a heavy-duty plastic bag. This will need to be disposed of. Once it’s placed into a heavy-duty plastic waste bag, properly gooseneck the bag and HEPA vacuum the outside before removing it from the work area.

Step 3: Remove any remaining waste from the work area and place it in waste containers. Clean all surfaces in the work area and areas within 2 feet beyond the work area until no visible dust, debris, or paint chips remain.

At this point, PPE may be removed. The proper method for removing PPE includes completely HEPA vacuuming yourself off, and then removing your work gloves, disposable coveralls, non-latex gloves, safety glasses, and finally your respirator. Use the handwashing facility to wash your hands, face, and shoes.

The last person to remove his or her PPE should keep respirator and gloves on in order to take up the decontamination area by HEPA vacuuming, misting, and folding in the plastic and placing in the waste bag. Remember to exit the decontamination area by walking over the tack pad before picking it up.

Step 4: After completing cleaning, recheck your work. Conduct a careful visual inspection of the work area for visible dust, debris, or paint chips on hard surfaces and in the soil. If dust or debris is found, re-clean, then recheck your work with another visual inspection.

Final visual inspection

Only a certified renovator may complete the final visual inspection.

Once you are confident there is no visible dust or debris, inform the certified renovator that the work area is ready for a visual inspection. The certified renovator carefully inspects the entire work area. When no visible dust, debris, or paint chips remain, the area is considered clean.

After the work area passes visual inspection by the certified renovator, barrier tape and caution signs may be removed.


The Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) video shows how to:

  • Decontaminate and dispose of used PPE.
  • Put on PPE.
  • Remove PPE.

Length of video: 4 minutes, 45 seconds

  • Disposable coveralls
  • Disposable foot covers
  • Disposable, non-latex gloves
  • Disposable waste bags
  • Duct tape
  • Eye protection
  • Handwashing facilities
  • Leather or canvas work gloves
  • P-100, R-100, or N-100 respirator


Donning PPE

Step 1: Put on protective coveralls. Disposable coveralls are a good way to keep dust off of workers’ street clothes and to reduce the chance of spreading dust into an employee’s vehicle or home.

Remember to use a HEPA vacuum to remove dust and debris from coveralls and all other outerwear before exiting the work area. To keep the cost down, consider buying extra-large coveralls in bulk and sizing down to fit workers using duct tape.

Step 2: If your coveralls do not have built-in booties, put on boot covers.

Step 3: Put on your P, R, or N-100 respirator to prevent overexposure to lead dust.

Step 4: Put on safety glasses.

Step 5: Put on non-latex gloves.

Step 6: Put on your leather or canvas work gloves.

Step 7: Put on the hood of your disposable coveralls or, alternatively, you can wear a painter’s hat. Head coverings are required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

You are now ready to begin work.

For more information regarding the OSHA requirements for PPE, please refer to the OSHA website.

Doffing personal protective equipment

Step 1: After work is complete, you’ll need to completely HEPA vacuum yourself off. Once HEPA vacuumed, you can remove your work gloves.

Step 2: Remove your hat or the hood if it is attached already. Dispose of the hood in the waste bag.

Step 3: Remove the disposable coveralls; remember to roll the coveralls into themselves in order to contain any lead dust. You may remove your boot covers along with your disposable coveralls if they’re not attached. You’ll need to dispose of these items in the waste bag.

Step 4: Remove your non-latex gloves; the proper method is to remove the first glove inside out, hold it in the palm of the remaining glove, then turn the remaining glove inside out while removing it, as well. Dispose of the gloves in the waste bag.

Step 5: Remove your safety glasses. Either dispose of or clean these glasses with a wet wipe.

Step 6: The last piece of personal protective equipment that should be removed is your respirator. Either clean or dispose of the respirator.

Step 7: Use handwashing facilities or wet wipes to wash your hands, face, and shoes.

Interior work

The Interior Work Practices video shows how to:

  • Gooseneck bagged waste and clean up after work is finished.
  • Make sure final cleaning is thorough.
  • Set up an interior work area to contain dust and debris.
  • Use signs and barriers to keep others out of the work area.

Length of video: 14 minutes, 12 seconds

  • Barrier tape/warning signs/orange cones
  • Cutting tool
  • Disposable tack pad
  • Dowel
  • Flashlight
  • Heavy-duty plastic sheeting
  • HEPA vacuum
  • PPE
  • Spray bottle/garden sprayer
  • Stapler
  • Tape
  • Tape measure
  • Wet wipes

Establishing interior containment

Before laying plastic, walk through the work area and close all doors and windows leading to or from the work area.

Tape the seams around each door and window casing with painter’s tape.

Step 1: Cut plastic sheeting so that it covers all exposed surfaces within 6 feet of components that will be affected by the work. Here, we will be working on the window on the right side of the screen.

Step 2: Put down any runners that you plan on using for accessing the work area. This will keep workers from tracking debris on carpets or floors when walking out of the work area. Make sure these are secured to the floor with tape.

Step 3: Close and cover all air and heat diffusers and intakes and, if it’s possible, turn off the HVAC system altogether until cleaning verification has been achieved.

Covering or removing furniture

Remove all furniture from the work area. Removing all of the furniture will save time and materials. If, however, there are pieces of furniture that cannot be removed, they will need to be properly covered using the method shown here.

Step 1: Cover the floor with plastic within the work area. Tape it completely to the walls and floor around the edges. Cut around the immovable furniture so the plastic on the floor can lie flat.

Step 2: Cut a piece of plastic large enough to cover the immovable object and secure it with tape. Using painter’s tape on the walls will prevent damage to the paint on the walls, while using duct tape to tape plastic to plastic will give a secure seam.

Everything within 6 feet of surfaces that will be renovated, repaired, or painted needs to be removed or covered, including window treatments, furniture, and rugs.

Now that everything in the work area has been covered or removed, stage your tools on the plastic sheeting within the work area along with any other equipment that will be used to conduct the renovation, repair, or painting work. Bringing your tools into the work area before starting the job will save having to bring them through the flapped door entry.

Once your tools are staged, close off your work area with a flapped entry door.

Creating a T door

A flapped entry door is created by covering the work area entry doorway with two layers of plastic sheeting.

Step 1: Cut the first piece of plastic slightly bigger than the door frame so that it can be completely adhered to the frame.

Step 2: Use duct tape to create a vertical line about the size of a man from floor to header in the middle of the plastic sheeting on both sides. Use duct tape horizontally at the top and bottom to reinforce the plastic after it is cut.

Step 3: Make a small “S” fold at the top of the plastic sheeting and tape so that all layers are secured to the floor. This will ensure the plastic is not tight and allow for people to move through it. You might want to staple the plastic to the door frame for a stronger hold, but make sure you have the owner’s permission before doing so.

Step 4: Cut a long, vertical slit through the duct tape, leaving about 6 inches at the top and the bottom uncut and reinforce the top and the bottom with horizontal duct tape to prevent the plastic from tearing.

Step 5: Measure and cut a second sheet of plastic sheeting. This piece should be slightly shorter than the door frame so that it will hang down flat against the first sheet of plastic. Tape this to the top of the door frame.

Step 6: Weight the bottom of the second layer of plastic sheeting by taping a dowel rod to the bottom with duct tape. This creates a self-sealing flap over the doorway and seals the opening that was cut into the first sheet of plastic. Once attached, the dowel should be situated about 3 inches off the floor.

Alternate Z door

An alternate to creating this T door is to set up a Z door. We will quickly demonstrate this entry door now.

A Z door requires three sheets of plastic. To use this properly, the plastic on the floor needs to be curbed so that any dust or debris is contained within the work area. The first piece of plastic is taped to the top and left side of the doorway. The second is taped to the top and right side of the doorway, and the last piece of plastic is taped in the same method as the first piece, to the top and left. This door creates a weave entrance in which a worker enters by Z-ing through the alternating sheets. Put a series of S folds in the sheets while taping them to the door frame. This will allow for a greater range of motion for entering and exiting through a Z doorway.

To complete the containment, you need to control access to your work area. Ask occupants to leave and remain out of the room where work is being done until after the cleaning verification procedure is complete or clearance is passed. Further, you need to place “Do not enter” signs at the entrance to your work area and put up barrier tape to keep occupants away and aware that work is being done.

Last, you’ll want to lay down a tack pad to help keep dust and debris that may be on worker shoes or boot covers from being tracked into non-work areas. The plastic runners that were discussed earlier are another option.

At end of day or end of work – interior final cleaning

Once the work has been completed, your tools need to be cleaned and removed from the work area before you can start cleaning. Vacuum off tools with the HEPA vacuum, or wipe them down with wet wipes. Using the plastic runners and tack pad, workers can take the cleaned tools out of the work area.

Step 1: The first step of interior cleaning is to wrap, seal, or bag in plastic all removed components and other large materials or debris created during the renovation work. HEPA vacuum the plastic waste bags or wraps, remove them from the work area and place in appropriate waste containers.

Step 2: Working top to bottom and from the innermost region of the work area towards the entry door, vacuum the walls and all plastic sheeting using the HEPA vacuum. HEPA vacuum yourself. At this point, workers can remove their Tyvek suit, but leave on boot covers, non-latex gloves, eye protection, and respirators.

Step 3: Mist the plastic sheeting, and fold dirty sides inward when removing it. Either seal the edges of the folded plastic with tape or place folded sheeting in a heavy-duty plastic bag. Used plastic must be disposed of.

Step 4: Clean all surfaces within the work area and in the area 2 feet beyond the work area until no dust or debris remains. Start cleaning at the top of the wall and work down toward the floor. HEPA vacuum or wet wipe all wall surfaces in the work area. HEPA vacuum all remaining surfaces in the work area, including furniture and fixtures. Use the upholstery attachment for the window surfaces and the crevice tool along the edge of the walls. Use the HEPA vacuum with a beater bar for carpeting.

Step 5: Wipe all remaining surfaces and objects in the work area, except for carpeted and upholstered surfaces, with a disposable wet cleaning wipe. Mope uncarpeted floor using the two-bucket method of wet mopping. Mop strokes should be in long “S” motions. Work from the end farthest from the work area entrance, back toward the entrance. Make sure never to step back into areas that have already been cleaned.

Step 6: If the property receives funds from the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development, and as a best practice, repeat the cleaning procedure for walls, countertops, and floors.

Step 7: After completing the cleaning procedure, check your work. Conduct a careful visual inspection of the work area looking for visible dust and debris. If visible dust or debris is found, repeat the cleaning procedure.

After completing the visual inspection, the T door can be taken down but tape barriers and “Do not enter” signs need to remain in place to control the work area.

Step 8: Once the cleaning procedure is complete and you’ve rechecked your work, notify the certified renovator in charge of the project that the work area is clean and ready for final visual and cleaning verification inspections.

At end of day or end of work – interior final cleaning

The visual inspection may only be conducted by a certified renovator.

Step 1: PPE required for visual inspection. When conducting a visual inspection, make sure you are wearing boot covers so that you do not track any dust or debris into the work area.

Step 2: Turn on all lights in the work area, and bring a bright white-light flashlight along to ensure adequate lighting.

Step 3: Systematically look at every horizontal surface in the work area. If you find dust or debris, re-clean the work area and repeat the visual inspection until it passes.

Step 4: Once you have carefully inspected all of the surfaces and have found no dust or debris, the certified renovator may proceed to the cleaning verification procedure.

Cleaning verification

The cleaning verification may only be conducted by a certified renovator.

3M™ LeadCheck™ test kit

The Using a Recognized 3M LeadCheck test kit video shows how to determine the presence of lead in paint.

Learn more about how to use test kits, when they may be used, and by whom.

Length of video: 5 minutes, 7 seconds .

Lead Check Swabs Package

  • 3M LeadCheck test kit with instructions
  • Disposable non-latex gloves
  • Disposable shoe covers
  • Duct tape
  • Garbage bag
  • Plastic drop cloth
  • Testing surface
  • Utility knife
  • Verification card
  • Wet wipes

Using a recognized test kit

Step 1: Read the manufacturer’s instructions. This is the most important step. Each test kit varies regarding the procedures for the most accurate results. The instructions also give you information regarding which substrates can be tested. Here we will be demonstrating the LeadCheck swabs and following the instructions they provide.

Step 2: You may want to secure a drop cloth. This can be put into place to catch any debris that may come loose during testing.

Step 3: Put on your personal protective equipment, including disposable non-latex gloves, shoe covers, and optional eye protection.

Step 4: Prep your surface. Cleaning the surface with a wet wipe will ensure accurate results without a bias from possible lead dust that has gathered on the surface.

Step 5: As per the manufacturer’s instructions, cut a quarter-inch notch with diagonal exposure through all painted layers down to the bare surface.

Step 6: Activate your LeadCheck swab. Within the tube is a liquid and a powder; crushing each end of the tube and shaking will allow these to mix.

Step 7: Squeeze the liquid out of the applicator onto the notch that you cut into the painted component and rub the exposed cross section for 30 seconds. If any of the painted layers contain lead, a positive result will occur and the swab or the surface will turn pink or red. You must use one swab for every testing surface.

Step 8: You can confirm your results with the verification card provided by the manufacturer. If your testing surface yields a negative result, you must use your verification card to prove that the kit was working correctly. There is lead on the card and thus it should yield a positive result.

Step 9: Cleaning up the testing site consists of using a wet wipe to clean any remaining residue off the testing surface and cleaning the cutting tool used to match the notch.

Step 10: At this point, you can remove your personal protective equipment and take up the drop cloth. First, remove your boot covers while stepping off the plastic. HEPA vacuum and then mist the plastic with water, fold the dirty side in and dispose of your drop cloth in the waste bag.

Removing PPE

Now you can remove your non-latex gloves. The proper method is to remove the first glove inside out, hold it in the palm of the remaining glove, then turn the remaining glove inside out while removing it, as well.

Last, remove your safety glasses and then wash your hands and face with a wet wipe.

Last revised November 25, 2022