Amanda Smith from the SF Department of Health came to our house and took 5 dust samples. The floor at the front door, the kitchen floor, the floor off the back porch, downstairs hallway and the windowsill in the kids play area. All samples came back non detectable except the windowsill at a level of 80 µg/ft² (micograms per square foot). The legal limit for interior window sills is 250 µg/ft². That old window is painted shut with very old paint (like most of the windows in my house). Amanda thinks that dust is probably seeping in through the cracks.
It was a very dusty windowsill so I plan to clean those with a wet rage more often.
The lead test for our water also came back with low levels. Sue Soteriou from the SFPUC returned my call and suggested that I do a second test this time after flushing out the pipes. The water from the street level is usually colder than the water sitting in your pipes overnight, so simply feeling the water for about a minute until the temperature drops will let you know your pipes are flushed out. She also mentioned that if you want to test the fixture, then only fill the liter bottle half way. Our pipes are copper and she reminded me that lead contamination can come from the solder used on copper pipes.
The SFPUC offers low-cost water tests for lead ($25 per tap). To request a test, call 877-737-8297.
Here are the results from the water lead test we did in 2008 after my son's exposure. I was told that the levels where fine because they are lower than the EPA's action level of 15PPB. Knowing what I know now, I do not think these numbers are acceptable and I wished I had applied myself to making changes.
Raised a feral hippy child in New Mexico, this dumpster diving compost lover wants to help green your home.