Welcome to RRPedia
Your Interactive Resource for EPA RRP Information

RRPedia logoLooking for accurate information about the EPA RRP rule?

RRPedia has been created by Shawn McCadden to help remodelers and others affected by the New EPA Renovation Repair and Painting Rule. 

Please read RRPedia Use and Contribution Information before using or contributing to RRPedia.


You Can Browse For RRP Topics By Using The Tags List To The Right

Can I do RRP work if my firm is not a EPA Certified Firm yet?

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Sat, Apr 17, 2010 @ 03:43 PM


Will a renovator working for a firm that has submitted a certification application to EPA but has not received its certification be allowed to work on pre-1978 properties assuming compliance with all other requirement of the EPA RRP Rule?

Firm logo


According to the EPA web site:

"No.  Beginning April 22, 2010, no firm may perform, offer, or claim to perform renovations covered by the RRP Rule without certification from EPA"

NOTE:  If you are a Certified Renovator, acting as a subcontractor working for and being paid by a certified firm, you can work under the rule.   

NOTE: The fine for working without firm certification is $37,500 per violation per day.  Willful violation of the rule is subject to an additional fine of $37,000 and or prison time.

Topics: RRP Questions, EPA RRP Lead Rules, Legal Considerations, EPA RRP for Dummies, Firm Certification, Enforcement and Inspections

What is the "Opt-Out" provision of the EPA RRP Rule and when does it apply?

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Sat, Apr 17, 2010 @ 03:29 PM


What is the "opt-out" provision of the Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) Rule and when does it apply?

Danger signAccording to the Q&A area of the EPA's web site, before you can offer or do work on pre-1978 homes, you must be a Certified Firm (click here to see this Q&A).  So, even if the work practices are not required, or the owner decides to opt-out, offering services or working on target properties requires that the contractor offering the contract to a property owner be a certified firm.

According to the EPA web site:

"The RRP Rule published April 22, 2008, allows homeowners to 'opt out' of the requirement to hire a trained renovator who follows the RRP work practices if the homeowner certifies that (1) the renovation will occur in the owner's residence, (2) no child under age 6 or pregnant women resides there, (3) the housing is not a child-occupied facility, and (4) the owner acknowledges that the renovation firm will not be required to use the work practices contained in the RRP rule." 

NOTE: On April 23, 2010, the EPA announce that the opt-out provision would be phased out. The change in the rule regarding the opt-out will become effective on July 6th, 2010.  Click here for more on the opt-out posted at the EPA Web Site.

RINOTE:  Rhode Island is one of many states and or tribal authorities that has been granted and or is seeking authorization by the EPA to administer the RRP program.  The opt-out provision is/will not be allowed in RI.  If you know of the status of the opt-out in RI and or other states, please contribute that information along with a source/link to confirm accuracy. 

Click here to view or download the RI Regulations as a PDF

Topics: RRP Questions, RI Conciderations, EPA RRP Lead Rules, Sales Considerations, Legal Considerations, Work Practices, RRP for Dummies

Do my subs need to be EPA RRP Certified Firms?

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Sat, Apr 17, 2010 @ 03:02 PM

If a general contractor hires a subcontractor to work at a renovation site, does the subcontractor need to be an EPA certified firm if the subcontractor does not disturb any paint? 

According to the EPA Website:

HVAC DuctworkFirms performing tasks that disturb no painted surfaces whatsoever do not need to be EPA Certified Firms.  However, since conditions at the job site may be difficult to predict, EPA strongly recommends that all firms involved in the renovation be certified and use properly trained and certified personnel.  For example, a firm hired to install an HVAC system after demolition of painted surfaces has taken place may find that to complete the job painted surfaces need to be disturbed.  The HVAC firm may not engage in activities that disturb painted surfaces if it is not certified.  

ConfusionAs every renovation job is different, it is up to the firm acting as the general contractor to determine what activities are within the scope of the renovation and to ensure that other firms are properly trained and certified for the tasks they will be performing.  All firms, including the firm acting as the general contractor, are responsible for making sure the renovation is performed in accordance with the RRP work practice standards, including keeping containment intact and making sure lead dust and debris do not leave the work site.   General contractors should keep in mind that if a firm hires a subcontractor that fails to follow the work practice standards or otherwise violates the Renovation, Repair, and Painting rule, the firm that hired the subcontractor is also responsible for the violation.

Topics: RRP Questions, EPA RRP Lead Rules, Worker Training, Production Considerations, Subcontractor Considerations

Do EPA RRP lead rules apply to home owners who do their own work?

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Sat, Apr 17, 2010 @ 12:12 PM

We are located in a town where a majority of the homes are pre- 1940. How do the new lead rules apply to home owners who do their own work?  (RRP DIY)

Unfortunately, the RRP rules do not apply to home owners doing their own work!  Also, the rule does not apply if the work is being done by volunteers.  The rule only applies if the work is being done for compensation. If volunteers are being supervised by a paid supervisor, the rule does apply.

DIY Painter

Homeowners have no responsibilities under the new EPA RRP rules.  They can do their own work as they please, but are "encouraged" to follow lead safe practices.  If home owners are considering doing their own work, contractors can suggest they read Lead Paint Safety: A Field Guide for Painting, Home Maintenance, and Renovation Work.  This booklet published by HUD will make them aware of lead hazards and the risks they will take if they do their own work.  It also includes very thorough instructions, for working lead safe, specific to performing a variety of projects.  This booklet may help many homeowners realize they are getting in over their head and should hire a professional.  The booklet might also be a great resource for contractors trying to collect effective and innovative lead safe work practices.


Contractors are required to be a certified firm to offer and orFirm logosell the work, but the homeowner does not in any way have responsibility to only hire a certified firm.  There is no consequence to the consumer for hiring someone who works illegally.  If this is a challenge for you, it would be pointless to express your concerns to an EPA employee.  They don't make the laws or rules.  Rather, you should speak with your congressman.  Congress was and is responsible for this rule, it's contents and the rule's lack of insight into the realities of implementation in the real world.

Topics: RRP Questions, EPA RRP Lead Rules, Legal Considerations, Work Practices

Do the EPA RRP work practices apply in an emergency situation?

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Thu, Apr 15, 2010 @ 10:01 PM


What with all this water damage this week, it occurs to me to wonder about the intersection between flood damage restoration (with insurance coverage) and the EPA's lead rule set to take effect in a couple three weeks.

FloodInsurance companies use detailed estimating programs to set the rates they will reimburse for repairs. When we go trying to fix up people's soggy basements and flooded first stories after this big wet one, can we assume that we are disturbing lead? And if so, are they going to want us to put up plastic and stuff amid all that soggy mess? And if so (which I doubt), are the insurance companies ready to pay the added cost of this?

I leave aside the absurdity of supposedly vacuuming for paint in a basement full of raw sewage. For now.

But seriously -- has anyone thought about how this EPA BS fits into the insurance industry's rate paradigm? Have you?



This came up for me in two places.  First with one of my clients who is a water remediation contractor.  Second, at a full day RRP Class for business owners that I presented.  I have no idea what the insurance industry has or will do regarding unit costs for EPA RRP related work.   There is an exclusion in the EPA RRP rule for emergency work.  


Basically, you can deal with the emergency up until the point it is no longer an emergency.  I suggest that would include removing damaged components so as to prevent and or limit additional damages (including mold) and health risks.  Clean up and cleaning verification is not excluded.  Also, you must switch over to the work practice requirements once you reach the point of interim control.  I hope this helps.  I am not an EPA lawyer, nor have I qualified this with the EPA. I am answering based on my understanding of the EPA RRP rule.

Topics: RRP Questions, EPA RRP Lead Rules, Work Practices, Work Practice Exclusions

Can I still work if I haven't received my EPA RRP Firm Certification?

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Thu, Apr 15, 2010 @ 09:25 PM


Shawn, We applied for designation as an EPA Renovation Firm early March. With the EPA backlog, I don't anticipate receiving the EPA Firm Certification prior to 22 April. Since that designation is more a registration paper-work drill as opposed to a certification, can we operate based on the fact we have applied alone? I am our newly trained Certified Renovator. Thanks, Tim

Firm Application

According to the EPA RRP rule, you cannot offer, sell or do work on pre 78 target housing for compensation unless you or your business is a certified firm.  That said, my EPA contacts have told me the government may decide to allow you to work as long as you have a certified renovator on staff and your application has been received by the EPA, even if they have not sent you confirmation of firm certification.  So, because this is not yet the case, you should assume you are taking a great risk if you work without being a certified firm.  Fines are $37,500 for each violation.  Watch for updates on the rule between now and April 22nd to see if the EPA grants any temporary amendment to the rule.   If I hear of any, I will post that info on my website.

I hope this helps.

Topics: RRP Questions, EPA RRP Lead Rules, EPA RRP for Dummies

EPA RRP: Can you tell me what I should do first?

Posted by Shawn McCadden on Thu, Apr 15, 2010 @ 08:46 PM

I am a small painting contractor and want to take the lead workshop being offered by the city of San Diego. They say I need to register my company with the EPA RRP before taking the class. Can you tell me what I should do first? Thanks Jim


Certified Firm LogoThanks for your message.   You are in a tough spot.  It might not make you feel any better, but you are in the majority of contractors who have been blindsided by this new rule.

You can do either first.  You do not need to be a EPA Certified Renovator before applying for Firm Certification.  Firm applications can take up to 90 days to process and, according to the rule,  starting April 22nd you are not supposed to offer, sell or perform work on homes build prior to 1978 unless you are a certified firm.

Here is what I suggest:

  • 1. Go to the EPA RRP Info page on my website and find the link to download the firm application. Fill it out and send it in ASAP along with the required $300.00 fee.
  • 2. Take your Certified Renovator class as soon as possible.
  • 3. Request and download the RRP Summary I offer on the EPA RRP Info page of my website. This will give you a good overview of what you will need to be aware of and consider.
  • 4. Down load and read the EPA Brochure titled; Small EntityCompliance Guide Compliance Guided to Renovate Right.  Read the guide from cover to cover.   It is a great summary and will give you a big picture understanding of the rule and how it will affect your work and your business practices. 
  • 5. Read the actual rule; including the amendments and the preamble. This too is available as a link on the EPA RRP Info page of my website
  • 6. In addition to the work practices, you will need to understand the new business responsibilities and how they will affect your business practices; including sales, contracts, estimating, scheduling and subcontractor relationships, just to name a few.
  • 7. Make a list, get the help you need for the things you cannot do or get yourself, and start working your list.
  • 8. If you have a headache already, take a few Advils now...

I hope this helps.  Keep checking back on this site.  I am continuously adding new info as I find it.   Be careful where or who you get your info from.  There is a lot of mis-information going around out there.

Topics: RRP Questions, Business Considerations, EPA RRP for Dummies