Archive for July, 2008

Good Article About Removing Fuel Oil Tanks from Basement!

In This Article:
A pair of old fuel oil tanks are disconnected from their supply piping, dragged over to the bottom of the basement stairs, and single-handedly hoisted up the stairs using a cable winch.
Related Articles:
Draining Unused Fuel Oil From Tanks
Killing The Fuel Oil Furnace

Skill Level: 2-3 Time Taken: A Couple Of Hours

By Bruce W. Maki, Editor

Question: What’s the first thing to do after you discover that your fuel oil furnace has conked out?

Answer: Start remodeling the basement, the basement stairwell, and anything between the furnace and the back door.

At least that was our approach when the old oil-burning monster died. We had been contemplating switching to propane, and this forced the decision.

The old furnace was quite large, about 3 feet wide by 6 feet long, and over 3 feet tall. Not being sure if it could be dismantled, we knew it would not fit up the basement stairs, through the door at the top of the stairs, and around the corner to go out the back door. It seems that about 10 to 12 years ago, long after the oil furnace and tanks were installed, the previous owner had built a dividing wall at the top of the stairs and installed a door. This created a small entry vestibule at the back door, but there was no way we could haul the furnace or oil tanks out with this partition in place.

Even if we wanted to keep a partition at the top of the stairs, the wall the previous owner built was so poorly constructed that we decided to tear it out and build something better.

So soon after the oil furnace died, while we waited for the heating contractor to fit us into their schedule, we demolished the partition and tore out all the wall surfaces around the stairwell. After opening up the stairs, we began to think about leaving the stairwell open, and building some shelving and storage into the area. But that is a project for another article.

It turned out that the old oil furnace was easy to dismantle. It was basically a sheet metal box surrounding a heavy steel heat exchanger. The heat exchanger was about one-fourth the size of the whole furnace, and was the largest and heaviest single piece. The two of us were able to haul it up the stairs with no problem.

But the oil tanks were another issue. These tanks were about 28 inches wide, 48 inches tall, and about 60 inches long. When the heating guy installed the new propane furnace, I mentioned how we would someday be hauling out the old oil tanks. He laughed and said “Don’t call me!”.

I figured I was in for a battle.

The oil tanks in the basement. Note all the concrete splattered on the tanks. A previous owner poured a concrete floor in the basement, but not under the tanks. The tanks rested on cement blocks placed on the original dirt floor.

I used a big 36″ aluminum pipe wrench to remove the fill and vent pipes.

Disconnecting the fill and vent piping was no small deal. The fill pipes were 2 inch diameter threaded steel pipe, and the vent was 1¼ inch pipe. After disconnecting the union fittings (the fitting in the picture above) I unscrewed whatever fittings and sections of pipe that I could turn. As a last resort, I could have simply cut all the pipe with my reciprocating saw, but unscrewing the pipes is faster.

Each tank had a shut-off valve at it’s outlet (note the red handles) though they were different types of valves. The larger red object in the right-hand photo contains a replaceable filter.

Using an adjustable wrench I removed the flare fittings that connected the copper tubing to the tee. I placed a small shallow container below the tubing to catch the oil.

I was able to remove the shut-off valves with a wrench. There was a ½ inch pipe thread on the other end of the valve, which later proved to be useful.

Not having a clue how to approach this, I tried lifting one of the tanks. To my surprise I was able to lift it by myself. I placed some blocks of wood under the steel “feet”.

Getting A Handle On Things:
I connected some short pieces of ½ inch black pipe to the drain line.
This will form a handle.

Outside, I removed a section of the fill pipe, and some elbows.

I attached some pieces of 1¼ inch pipe to the fill hole on the tank, to make an upper handle.

I had to buy an adapter to connect the 1¼ inch pipe to the 2 inch opening on the tank.

With these two handles attached to the tank, I was able to easily drag them across the basement floor. What I could not do was take a picture of myself doing that.

The monster challenge:
The basement stairs… with very low headroom.
There’s a couple of oil tanks that want to leave the basement.
I’m home alone, I won’t have any helpers for a couple of days and I don’t want to wait.

The view from the basement, looking up. The arrow points to the back door.

The monstrous solution:
Mechanical Advantage: With the tools I have, I can lift all sorts of things. I knew I could lift the tanks with a cable winch (a.k.a. “Come-Along”), but I needed an anchor point that was sturdy enough.

This door jamb was chosen for the job. I pried off the door stop trim and bolted this big automotive tow hook into the framing, using 6 inch lag screws.

This door jamb is just above the top of the stairs. The red arrow points to the hook.
I chose this anchor location because I realized that I could shoot a straight line from that door frame down to the bottom of the stairs.

The oil tank at the bottom of the stairs. Since the tanks were only about 28 inches wide, and the stairs were over 36 inches wide, I figured I would need to prevent the tank from slipping sideways.
So I placed a long 2×10 on the side of the stairs.

Using only muscle power I was able to get the tank started up the stairs, but no farther. Even with the convenient carrying handle, there was no way I could lift this 120 pound mass uphill.

The view from in the basement.

At this point I realized that the “handle” was going to hit the ceiling on the way up the stairs.

I used this short piece of 5/16 inch chain to provide a means of grabbing the oil tank.

To apply a uniform pulling force, I hooked the short chain to the front feet on the tank…

… and I hooked the cable winch to the mid point of this short chain. I knew that I needed to pull on the center of the tank, or else it would turn on me.

The other end of the winch was hooked to an extra-long section of 5/16″ chain, which was looped over the tow hook.
Of course, I began this operation with the winch’s cable fully extended.

I just cranked away on the winch and the tank moved up the stairs. But…

The tank kept leaning to the side, so made a “guardrail” by laying a 12-foot 2×10 on a short piece of wood (hidden below the near end of the plank). This short “outrigger” board was held in place with a couple of cement blocks.

It took only a few minutes to get the tank past the narrow headroom point.

At this point the cable winch had been completely wound up (the two red arrows point to the fixed and moveable parts of the winch, and they are close together).
I had to stop and reposition the chains.

Just in case…
I placed a long heavy steel bar under the short chain loop, to hold the tanks from sliding back down the stairs. But the back edge of the tank just happened to get wedged into place, so there was no weight placed on this chain.

I again extended the winch’s cable and connected it directly to the tow hook, and hooked the other end to the rusty old loop chain.

I continued to crank on the winch and the oil tank climbed higher up the stairs.

This was about as far as I could hoist the tank.
In this picture you can get a better idea of how the tank was rigged.

This is one of the four “feet” under the tank. These made convenient grab points for the hooks.

This picture was taken from just outside the back door.
With the chain and winch still connected, I swung the tank towards the back door and slid it outside.

These tanks were fairly easy to move around, though I couldn’t lift the entire weight. I was able to “walk” the tank by lifting one side and then the other.
Here I screwed some handles back in place to help move the tank.

The Damage Is Done:
Moving these two oil tanks from the basement caused some damage. The stair treads got rather chewed up from the heavy weight being dragged across them.

The tank left some scratches on the basement floor (top arrow) and some small puddles of oil (bottom arrow). Oil spills won’t dry up, and they may leave an odor for many months.

I routinely use a spray can of automotive brake cleaner (which is very volatile and may be highly flammable) to remove oil spots from concrete. I spray the brake cleaner on the spot and immediately wipe it up with a paper towel. Brake cleaner removes most of the oil, but there is usually a slight stain on the concrete.

The door jamb was not as secure as I first thought. The jamb pulled away from the casing, leaving a gap (arrow).

But none of these minor problems were any cause for concern, because all of these areas either need remodeling or are utility spaces that don’t really matter. This is an important issue for many people, however, because not everybody is willing to remodel part of their house just to remove an oil tank.

The relevant point is: If a house has good finished surfaces between the oil tank and the back door, it would be wise to have several people available to help move the tank. Protective measures such as rugs or scraps of carpet could be employed to prevent damage.

The oil tank area after the tanks were removed. The corner was a mess. It had collected debris and junk for about half a century.

When I hauled away the tanks, I loaded them both in my tiny 4×8 utility trailer and strapped them in place with ratcheting tie-down straps.
I would have preferred to lay the tanks down, but they both would not fit, and I didn’t want to make two trips.

To keep the straps from slipping out of place, I threaded the straps through the holes in the feet.

Cleaning The Oil Tanks:
While this is probably not necessary, I attempted to clean the oil tanks, just to see if I could. I started by hauling the tanks far into the back yard. We live on an old farm, so there’s lots of open land here. I strapped each tank to my fridge dolly and hauled them out back beside my bonfire pit. Then I poured a gallon of mineral spirits into a garden sprayer (the sprayer instructions loudly warn against spraying combustible liquids, but… I live on the edge) and poked the sprayer nozzle into the various openings on the tanks. I sprayed the insides from top to bottom, then I flipped the tanks over a couple of times (end over end, to avoid spilling liquids). I drained the tanks over some newspapers and scraps of wood, so the liquid could be burned off. I suspect it’s better for the environment to burn such petroleum products rather than let them evaporate.

Next I poured about a quart of denatured alcohol into the garden sprayer and sprayed the alcohol. into the tanks to rinse away the mineral spirits and oil. This certainly helped, but a quart of alcohol was not enough to do the job. I drained the alcohol over the burn pile, rolled the tanks a safe distance away, and ignited the liquid waste.

Later, I put some Simple Green in the garden sprayer, not diluted at all. Simple Green seems to be a good water-soluble degreasing agent. I sprayed the insides of the tanks and then rolled the tanks around the hayfield, this time letting stuff come out the large holes on top. Large chunks of black charcoal-like gunk came out. I rinsed the tanks several times with a garden hose.

Now the tanks smelled of a combination of Simple Green AND fuel oil.

After I hauled away the tanks, the back yard smelled faintly of fuel oil. There were numerous spots of black oily gunk in the field. I used a propane torch to burn off these oily spots (being careful not to let grass fires get started), and that seemed to remove the odor.

Was this the best thing to do? I don’t know. If I was going to cut the tanks open, I could have wiped the insides clean with rags or newspapers.

Disposing Of Old Oil Tanks:
I was able to dispose of the old tanks at a local metal recycling company. Normally they require that all tanks be cut in half, but they made an exception for me because I had given them over 100 gallons of unused fuel oil. Besides, the manager knew somebody who might be able to use them, so they accepted the tanks intact.

I have seen people make large trailer-mounted barbecue grills from oil tanks. They cut the tank in two, turning the top half into a hinged lid, and install supports for metal grills. This was of no interest to me, but I seriously considered placing an advertisement in the local paper to give away these tanks. But… I just didn’t have the time to fool around with such things… I just wanted them gone. Whatever happens to these old tanks, at least the steel will be re-used or recycled.

Disposing of large items like oil tanks could be quite a problem. I doubt the garbage haulers would take an oil tank if you left it by the curb. It would be wise to find someone to take the oil tank before removing it from the house.

Cutting these tanks would be time-consuming, but not impossible. An oxy-acetylene torch immediately comes to mind, but I would NOT recommend using a torch to cut an oil tank. A cutting torch could easily ignite leftover fuel inside an oil tank, and any kind of fire inside an enclosed chamber could be explosive. Besides, there could be other liquid residues in the tank, liquids that are much more volatile than fuel oil.

I have cut plenty of heavy-gauge steel with my Sawzall. The trick to cutting (or drilling) heavy ferrous metals is :

Use a sharp, fine-toothed, metal cutting blade. Bi-metal blades are the best because the teeth are a harder metal than the blade body.
Use a slow cutting speed, to reduce overheating of the blade. The higher-priced Sawzalls have a control dial that limits the maximum speed. When cutting iron and steel, I use 3 on the scale of 1 to 5.
Push hard on the cutting tool.
Lubricate the HELL out of the cutter. I often use WD-40, but any oily substance will help. Plain water will work too, but it will rust the blade if not wiped off after use. Sometimes I use a waxy lube stick that is meant for lubricating doors and hinges. I keep a tube in the Sawzall case and just rub it on the blade. In a pinch, spitting on the blade is better than nothing. I’m not kidding!
In a nutshell: If you want to dull your cutting blades: cut ferrous metals at high speed, don’t push very hard, and don’t lubricate the cutter. The blade manufacturers will love you.
One problem with cutting these oil tanks would be the weld seams at the corners. When steel is welded the nearby metal becomes much harder, and the weld metal itself is usually very hard. I suspect this would destroy most reciprocating saw blades, even bi-metal blades. My approach would be to use an abrasive cutter in the weld area. I have an inexpensive pneumatic 3″ diameter abrasive disc cut-off tool. This tool only cost fifteen bucks, but it requires a large air compressor (this is perhaps the most powerful tool I have; it makes my 4 HP air compressor run nearly full time). An angle grinder would also work, or an abrasive blade could be used on a circular saw. In fact, the entire cut could be made with an abrasive metal-cutting blade mounted on a circular saw, but it might be slower than a Sawzall. Besides, these abrasive blades throw sparks, and too many sparks might ignite traces of oil in the tanks.

Don’t Be Stupid: Complete The Job!
I have heard stories in the past (there was one on the local news just the other day) about fuel oil being delivered to the wrong house. Free oil, no big deal, right? Unless the house had the oil tank removed.

Imagine coming home to find a couple of hundred gallons of smelly fuel oil in your basement. Yu-uck! What a mess. What a hassle. It would take forever to get rid of the odor.

Of course, this could only happen if someone removed the oil tank but didn’t remove the fill tube. That is simply dumb. If you are going to remove an oil tank, complete the job and remove the oil fill tube and vent tube. Or at least screw a pipe cap on the open end of the pipe down in the basement. Why leave an open access pipe into your house?

Fuel Oil and Fire Safety:
I’ve seen people who were afraid that fuel oil, kerosene or diesel fuel could explode. That is a clear sign of ignorance. Anybody who is familiar with these fuels knows that you can’t pay these fuels to burn, and explosive combustion is basically impossible. It is difficult to get fuel oil to burn; it has to be spread out in a thin layer, such as in a wick, or sprayed into a fine mist (which furnaces do). A puddle or container of oil just won’t burn readily.

I think one of the most appealing features of fuel oil is its high degree of safety.

BUT… fuel oil, kerosene or diesel could have other flammable liquids mixed in, so use extra caution if you are not certain of the origin of the oil. Any waste oil product could easily contain other more volatile liquids. For instance, used motor oil commonly gets mixed with a bit of gasoline because mechanics often use an oil drain pan to catch dripping gasoline.

Tools Used:
Pipe Wrenches, 24″, 36″
5/16″ Chain
2-Ton Ratcheting Cable Winch
Automotive Tow Hook


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Oil tank leak drains FWCS crisis fund

Oil tank leak drains FWCS crisis fund

Another building problem has wiped out Fort Wayne Community Schools’ emergency funds.

“For the rest of the year, we’ll cross our fingers that we don’t have an emergency,” spokeswoman Krista Stockman said.

A leaking underground oil storage tank at Scott Academy has drained the remaining $56,000 set aside for such emergencies. The district began the year with $600,000 to spend but a tank removal at Pleasant Center Elementary and roof repairs at Harrison Hill Elementary took most of that money. The board is set to approve the work at Scott Academy, which has already begun, at its Monday meeting.

In the event of another emergency before January, Stockman said the district would have to dip elsewhere in its building fund, which is used to pay for equipment, technology, maintenance and security, as well as pre-planned projects. State law prevents the district from raiding other areas of its $284 million budget for building repairs.

“It’s not a secret that we have some problems with our buildings,” Stockman said. “If it was something catastrophic, we just plain wouldn’t have the money for that, and we would have to get real creative about what we’re going to do.”

A $500 million building renovation and expansion plan the district proposed a year ago to shore up its aging infrastructure was soundly defeated in a taxpayer remonstrance.

The district has long been concerned about what it calls a deteriorating heating system at Snider High School. “You still have to educate,” Superintendent Wendy Robinson said earlier this year. “People think, ‘Oh, you’re just crying wolf.’ It’s not in our best interest to disrupt the education of children.”

Stockman said planned projects or equipment purchases could be delayed in case of another emergency, but the cost of a large problem – even the size of Harrison Hill’s – could exceed those potential savings.

“That’s always a concern,” she said, “and that’s why we’ve been talking about a long-term plan.”

Last month, the board began discussion of a new long-term renovation plan, one that won’t give taxpayers sticker shock.

“I think we’re ready to go and explore and figure out how to do it in an affordable manner,” board President Mark GiaQuinta has said.

No details have been released, and no further discussions have been held since June 23.

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Concrete Technology Restores Historic Bridges

Engineering firm French & Parrello used advanced concrete technology to update and repair two deteriorating New Jersey spans.

Submitted by French & Parrello — Constructioneer, 7/21/2008

As our nation’s bridges come under increasing scrutiny, New Jersey agencies are taking action. At issue was bridge safety for two deteriorating spans in high traffic areas. The challenge was to maintain the historic character of the two bridges while updating them to current safety standards. The engineering firm of French & Parrello in Wall, NJ, met this challenge head on with advanced concrete technology that garnered the firm awards for both projects by the New Jersey chapter of the American Concrete Institute (NJACI) and the New Jersey Concrete and Aggregate Association (NJCAA).

Route 202 over Mine BrookThe first bridge is a NJ Department of Transportation span on Route 202 over Mine Brook in Bernardsville Borough. It was a concrete arch bridge in a rural, but highly trafficked, area. Local residents wanted the replacement bridge to replicate the original as much as possible.

“Initially, we were considering staged construction for replacement of the bridge,” said Michael Troncone, P.E., Transportation Department director, French & Parrello. “But that would have had tremendous environmental repercussions. It would have required temporary widening and the cutting down of numerous trees, wetlands impacts and filling within a flood plain. Therefore, we had to close the bridge and detour the traffic.”

In order to minimize these closures, French & Parrello turned to precast concrete. The bridge was designed using precast inverted T-sections. Small cast-in-place closure pours in the footings were used to lock the precast sections together. Stone veneer from a local quarry was used on the exposed surfaces of the bridge to create the historic look.

The NJDOT required the project to be completed within nine weeks. The actual installation of the precast concrete took only a few days. The remainder of the time was for aerial utility relocations, road construction, drainage, grading, and placement of the stone veneer.

“The contractor finished three weeks ahead of schedule due to the decision to work with precast concrete,” acknowledges Troncone.

67-fott span on East Cliff Stree over Peters BrookThe second bridge is a 67-foot span on East Cliff Street over Peters Brook in Somerville Borough. The original bridge featured concrete balustrades within the parapets and on the arch. While the concrete slab arch had only minor spalling and some exposed reinforcing steel, the spandrel walls were bulging and leaking water. The challenge here was to replicate the architecturally significant balustrade parapets.

“It became apparent that concrete had to be used on this project,” explains Troncone, “so that the finished result would replicate the original bridge without indicating that it was rehabilitated.”

French & Parrello called for the removal of the original spandrel walls and installation of an anchor slab that was doweled into the top of the arch. Designers then called for pouring of new spandrel walls in front of the anchor slab. On top of the wingwalls and the new spandrel walls, the contractor placed a parapet that incorporated precast balustrades, precast planks and cast-in-place railing and pylons that replicated the look of the original bridge. A calcium nitrate-based corrosion inhibitor was added to the cast-in-place concrete to increase the service life of the rehabilitated concrete bridge components.

Also included in the work was rehabilitation of the arch extrados. A cement mortar parge coat was spread over the arch, and a membrane waterproofing applied. Porous fill (No. 8 broken stone) was used to fill the space above the arch to support the road bed.

Three different types of concrete repairs were also performed at various locations along the arch intrados and on the front face of the wingwalls. Quick-setting, non-sag patch concrete was used to repair surface scaling, concrete spalls and areas with exposed reinforcing steel. The team coated all exposed exterior surfaces with a flexible acrylic skim coat for a smooth, uniform appearance.

“A very valuable feature of concrete is that it can be formed in any shape desired,” said Troncone. “These projects validate the fact that concrete can be used to incorporate aesthetics in bridge design.”

For the first bridge, French and Parrello utilized 58 cubic yards of NJDOT Class A concrete, 212 linear feet of abutment and wingwall units, and 53 linear feet of culvert units for a cost of $1,242,421. For the second bridge, the firm repaired 995 square feet with 92 cubic yards of concrete plus 460 square yards of mortar parge coat. There was also 147 linear feet of balustrade railing.

The innovations in both bridges earned French & Parrello recognition by the concrete industry at the NJACI and NJCAA annual awards.

“We are pleased to be honored for these projects, which will ultimately make those areas in New Jersey a better place to live,” said Argo Parrello, president and CEO of French & Parrello.

The NJACI is an active organization of approximately 500 members who strive to further education in concrete technology throughout the state of New Jersey. Members include contractors, engineers, educators, concrete and concrete material suppliers, manufacturers of concrete-related products, and testing laboratories. For more information, visit

The NJCAA represents their members in areas of legislation and technical consultation. The group promotes the concrete and aggregate industry.

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Newark, New Jersey Celebrates First LEED Certified Homes

WHAT:  The Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District (LPCCD) is hosting a
        press conference and open house recognizing the first United
        States Green Building Council (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and
        Environmental Design (LEED) certified homes built in the City
        of Newark – The Washington Street Mixed Use Buildings. There
        are six 3800 square feet buildings offering two residential
        units and commercial space on the first floor of each

       The completion of The Washington Street Mixed Use Buildings
        makes LPCCD the largest USGBC LEED Homes provider in the State
        of New Jersey. These homes are also the only mixed-use LEED
        Homes in New Jersey and the first LEED Homes built in an urban
        area in the State. This program will include a ribbon cutting
        ceremony, tours of the building and remarks from several

WHO:   Stefan Pryor, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development, City of
       Richard Osworth, Director of Community Resource, Acting
        Director of Housing Services, State of New Jersey Department
        of Community Affairs
       Mark Kabakow, Senior Relationship Manager, Wachovia Bank
       Joseph A. Forline, Vice President Customer Operations, PSE&G
       Carmen Rainieri, Board Member, United States Green Building
        Council – NJ Chapter

WHEN:  Thursday, July 24, 2008 at 10:30am

WHERE: 450-460 Washington Street (enter at West Kinney Street)
       Newark, New Jersey 07102

WHY:   The LEED Gold certified Washington Street Mixed Use Buildings
        will offer sustainable features that include Energy Star
        windows and appliances, bamboo flooring and cabinets, recycled
        concrete countertops, low VOC paints, low-flow water fixtures,
        dual flush toilets and solar power. These amenities benefit
        the homeowner and the environment as well as conserve energy,
        reduce energy costs and provide health benefits.

       LPCCD is a community development corporation with a mission to
        plan, design and develop a comprehensive arts and cultural
        district in Lincoln Park in Newark, New Jersey. The LPCCD
        project is one of the nation’s best practices in urban
        sustainable community development and is developing one of the
        nation’s first urban eco-villages. The organization is also
        hosting the 3rd Annual Lincoln Park Music Festival, a
        signature event in the City of Newark, designed to further
        revitalize the Lincoln Park community. Tours and week long
        festivities will be held from July 24 through July 27, 2008
        for visitors to experience the revival of this historic
        neighborhood. For more information visit and
        call (973) 242-4144 for more information.

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How to reduce lead risks around your home

Carbon monoxide, radon gas and toxic mold aren’t the only hidden hazards that homeowners need to fear. There’s also the danger of exposure to a particularly harmful heavy metal – and not of the eardrum-splitting variety. The culprit is lead, and the threat is more pervasive and common than many people realize, especially in older homes, say the experts.

Lead can be found in many forms throughout the home: in paint, toys, dinnerware, dust that you track in from the outside with your shoes, and even your soil, which can pick up lead from exterior paint and past use of leaded car gasoline, says Gregg Steiner, president of Green Life Guru in Santa Monica, Calif.

Additionally, your older home may have plumbing with lead or lead solder that can leach the metal into your drinking water, and foods or liquids stored within lead crystal or lead-glazed pottery or porcelain containers can likewise be contaminated, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

One of the biggest sources of lead contamination is old paint. Many residences built prior to 1978 used lead-based paint, stain, varnish and shellac, which was nationally banned by the Consumer Products Safety Commission that year, says Lee Wasserman, president of LEW Corp., an environmental service provider in Mountainside, NJ.

“Hazards around these older homes include all painted surfaces that are cracking, chipping, flaking, peeling and chalking, and all friction and impact surfaces that have not been proven to be non-leaded,” Wasserman said. “The risk of lead poisoning is greater the older the home is. However all homes are potentially suspect to leaded products entering their environments.”

Lead is harmful to all humans, but especially children, who absorb more of it through their digestive tracts – between 30 to 75 percent, while adults absorb approximately 11 percent, says Debbie Lindgren, co-founder of Bluedominoes, Inc., a company dedicated to helping parents discover how environmental and dietary factors influence children’s health, behavior and learning.

Lindgren says that, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization, lead exposure can cause significant neurodevelopmental effects, including weakness in attention, aggression, headaches, vomiting, nausea, constipation, antisocial/delinquent behaviors, hearing problems, poor hand-eye coordination, sleep disturbances, slowed growth, seizures and more.

The EPA reports that lead is ingested into the body when we put our hands or other objects covered with lead dust into our mouths, when children eat paint chips or soil that contains lead, or when we breathe in lead dust, particularly during remodeling projects that disturb painted surfaces.

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