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Metal Roofing Contractors: Follow EPA Guidelines…Or Else!

Recently, Lowe’s Home Improvement Centers agreed to pay a $500,000 federal penalty in settling claims that its contractors in at least 9 states broke environmental rules for addressing lead paint dust during home renovation projects.  The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) federal Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule (RRP Rule) went into effect in 2010.

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It’s a wake up call for metal roofing contractors, who often come into contact with lead paint during home remodeling.

When integrating a new metal roof on a home built prior to 1978, contractors may have to cut into fascia boards or dormers.  If your installation will require you to disturb more than twenty square feet of painted surface, it is the roofing contractor’s responsibility to notify the homeowner of the lead abatement process.

Most minor repair and maintenance activities that involve less than twenty square feet on exterior projects are exempt from the work practice requirements.  Failure to comply with these requirements is considered a violation of the law and could cost you up to $37,500 per violation, per day.

Approximately three-quarters of the homes built before 1978 contain some lead-based paint.  It may be on any surface, but is most commonly found on exterior-painted surfaces, interior woodwork, doors and windows.  Common renovation activities like sanding, cutting and demolition can create hazardous lead dust and chips.  This federal law makes remodelers, siding and window replacement, and roofing contractors the enforcement agents for addressing this problem.

For more information please visit the EPA site here.