Contact information:

Susan Sutherland, R.S.

(740) 203-2082


HEPA Vacuum Loan Program

The Ohio Department of Health gave the Health District a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) Vacuum to loan out to homeowners to safely remove lead paint dust from their home. About 75% of homes built before 1978 contain some lead-based paint; however, the older the home the more likely it is to contain lead-based paint. The US EPA banned lead in paint in 1978.

You can live safely in a home that has lead-based paint as long as the paint is maintained in good condition. But removing paint that contains lead is the most hazardous part of a painting or home improvement project in homes built before 1978. Lead paint was used in homes built before 1978 and extensively in homes built before 1960. It was usually applied to windows, doors, stairs, railings, columns, porches, siding and trim. Since these are the places that often need work, many home improvement projects disturb old layers of lead paint and create lead paint dust, chips or fumes. If lead is inhaled or ingested, it may cause lead poisoning. Lead poisoning can result in serious harm to the brain, kidneys, nervous system and red blood cells. Lead is especially dangerous to children and pregnant women. Because a child's brain is still developing, lead is much more hazardous to them than to adults. Pregnant women should also avoid any lead in their environment for the same reasons.

Homeowners working on their own homes are not required to become certified Lead Abatement contractor unless their property is under a Lead Hazard Control Order Issued by ODH. They would then need to hire a licensed lead abatement contractor to do all work in the order. And they are still legally responsible for the safety of their family or children in their care when they can do the lead removal themselves! A HEPA vacuum is a very useful tool that can help clean lead-contaminated surfaces in the home.

A HEPA filter equipped vacuum cleaner is a special type of vacuum cleaner that can remove very small particles from floors, window sills and carpets and has a special filter that can trap these very small dust particles that you cannot see. Regular household or shop vacuum cleaners will not remove the very small dust particles in the home that can poison children. Much of the dust that is picked up is blown back out the exhaust of the vacuum, which lands on toys, furniture, and floors where small children become exposed.

We are loaning the HEPA vacuum to residents through a loan agreement. Please contact Susan Sutherland at (740) 203-2086 if you are interested in using the HEPA vacuum.