Update on 3M™ LeadCheck™: EPA has been informed that, as of October 2023, 3M has suspended the production and sale of 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kits. For more information on 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kits, call 800-494-3552 or visit the 3M™ webpage. Consumers may continue to use 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kits they may already have on hand. Those who are interested in purchasing a 3M™ LeadCheck™ lead test kit should contact their local retail stores for more information about product availability. EPA is committed to working with renovators in the wake of this announcement. EPA will recognize new test kits that meet both the negative response and positive response criteria outlined in 40 CFR 745.88(c)(1) and (2). In addition, EPA will continue to recognize the 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kit, or any already recognized test kit, should it be transferred to another entity, provided that the formulation does not change and no new test kit that meets both response criteria is recognized. View frequently asked questions about test kits below.
- 3M™ LeadCheck™. EPA recognizes that when used by a Certified Renovator, the 3M™ LeadCheck™ lead test kit can reliably determine that regulated lead-based paint is not present on wood, ferrous metal (alloys that contain iron), or drywall and plaster surfaces. As of October 2023, 3M has suspended the production and sale of 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kits. For more information on 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kits, call 800-494-3552 or visit 3M™ webpage online Existing LeadCheck™ test kits that have not expired will continue to be recognized by EPA despite expected limited availability after October 2023. Read the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) lead test kit laboratory evaluation report. Also read the 3M™ LeadCheck™ laboratory evaluation report (PDF).
- D-Lead®. Based on the results of the Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) report of vendor-submitted lead test kits, EPA recognizes that when used by a Certified Renovator, the D-Lead® paint test kit manufactured by ESCA Tech, Inc., can reliably determine that regulated lead-based paint is not present on wood, ferrous metal (alloys that contain iron), or drywall and plaster surfaces. Read the EPA environmental technology verification report on the D-Lead® test kit (PDF). Certified renovators seeking to use the D-Lead® paint test kit for purposes of meeting requirements in the RRP rule can purchase it from certain distributors and retail outlets. Locate a distributor or retailer online, or call 414-962-3006.
- State of Massachusetts. EPA recognizes that when used by trained professionals, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts lead test kit can reliably determine that regulated lead-based paint is not present on drywall and plaster; it is not recognized for use on wood and ferrous metal (alloys that contain iron) surfaces. Read the NIST lead test kit laboratory evaluation report.
Frequent Questions about Test Kits
What is an EPA-recognized test kit?
EPA is responsible for establishing standards and sharing information that helps protect American families and children from lead exposure. As part of this responsibility, when EPA published the Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule, EPA established, among other things, performance recognition criteria for lead test kits for use as an option to determine if regulated lead-based paint is not present in target housing and child-occupied facilities. The use of an EPA-recognized lead test kit, when used by a trained professional, can reliably determine that regulated lead-based paint is not present by virtue of a negative result.
When a home-owner contracts an EPA-certified renovator, the renovator has several options for determining whether to use lead safe work practices. The renovator may use an EPA-recognized paint test kit, send a paint chip sample to a National Lead Laboratory Accreditation Program certified lab, have testing performed by a certified inspector or risk assessor, or assume the presence of lead in pre-1978 homes and follow lead-safe work practices required by EPA regulations.
I heard 3M™ is no longer making their test kit. Is this true?
As of October 2023, 3M™ announced that it has suspended the production and sale of 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kits. For more information on 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kits, call 800-494-3552 or visit 3M™ webpage online.
Can I still use LeadCheck™ test kits I have on hand now that 3M has stopped making them?
EPA will continue to recognize the 3M™ LeadCheck™ test kit. Consumers and renovators should check the packaging for any relevant expiration date to determine whether the test kit has gone past its shelf-life. Consumers and renovators should contact 3M for more information about purchasing the 3M™ LeadCheck™ or should contact 3M™ or their local retail stores for more information about product availability while supplies last.
What other test kits are recognized by EPA?
The EPA recognizes two other lead test kits that meet the requirements and negative-response criteria of the Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule to help protect American families and communities: the D-Lead® Lead Paint Test Kit manufactured by ESCA Tech, Inc., and a specific lead test kit that is available for Massachusetts inspectors and risk assessors. While these lead test kits may be available to the public, EPA only recognizes tests conducted by certified inspectors, risk assessors and RRP-certified renovators.
What do I do if I can’t find one of the recognized lead test kits?
If lead-based paint is believed to be present , the best way to receive an accurate reading is by hiring a certified inspector, risk assessor or a Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule-certified renovator for specific identification of the presence and location of lead-based paint. Options for paint testing by certified professionals include an EPA-recognized paint test kit, sending a paint chip sample to a National Lead Laboratory Accreditation Program certified lab, or performing X-ray fluorescence (XRF) testing.
For additional questions regarding testing kits, contact the National Lead Information Center.
Are renovation firms required to test for lead-based paint before doing paint disturbing work in homes and child-care facilities built before 1978?
Firms have two options. They can either assume lead-based paint is present and follow the lead-safe work practice requirements of the RRP Rule (which requires no testing), or they can test to confirm the presence of lead. If lead-based paint is present or assumed to be present, certified renovation firms must follow lead-safe work practices and other RRP rule requirements during the renovation.
Would EPA’s renovation regulation apply if testing determined that no lead-based paint would be disturbed by a project?
Renovations in which a certified renovator, inspector or risk assessor determined in accordance with 40 CFR section 745.82(a) that no lead-based paint would be disturbed by a project are eligible for an exception from EPA’s renovation regulations. Renovators are required to keep records for three years certifying that a determination has been made that lead-based paint would not be disturbed by the project.