Testing Soil for Lead in Portland, OR

Lead is a naturally occurring element found in the Earth’s crust. While all soil contains some amount of lead, it can be toxic to humans when it exists in large amounts. 

For decades, lead has been used in products like paint, gasoline, piping and other building materials. When these products enter the environment, they often become embedded in the soil, where lead exposure can occur while gardening, playing in bare soil or eating produce that was grown in contaminated soil. 

Lead exposure can cause a variety of health risks for people of all ages, but it’s especially toxic to children, whose bodies are still developing and absorb lead faster. Once lead enters your body, it can become impossible to remove. 

Testing soil for lead can determine whether the soil is contaminated and inform any steps that should be taken to reduce lead exposure. Alpha Environmental offers professional lead testing in soil for residential and commercial properties.

How Does Lead Get Into Soil?

Lead can enter the soil in a number of ways, but it is especially common near:

  • Properties near major roadways, especially if they are more than 40 years old
  • Homes that are 50 years old or older

Buildings near highways have likely been exposed to years of leaded gasoline emissions that have been released into the air. Before lead was eliminated from gasoline in 1989, car exhaust mixed with the soil near roadways. Because lead doesn’t wash away, the contaminated soil will remain. Over time, this lead from the soil can also become airborne, causing additional exposure.

Prior to its ban in 1978, lead-based paints were widely used on the walls and ceilings of homes and businesses. As this paint ages, paint chips or dust that contains lead can fall into the soil surrounding the building’s base, causing elevated levels of lead in the soil around the structure. This is why it’s especially important to test soil for lead near homes that have existed for 50 or more years. 

When these sources of lead enter the soil, it typically remains in the top two inches, where you’re more likely to come in contact with it through outdoor activities. It’s also common for this looser soil to enter your home by sticking to shoes, clothing or pets. 

Why You Should Have Your Soil Tested

Testing soil for lead near your home or business is the first step in reducing your risk of lead exposure. Lead testing in soil is especially important for the following areas, which are at risk for high levels of heavy metals like lead:

  • Older residential areas that may have used lead-based solders, pipes, faucets or other materials in the building process
  • Businesses that may be located on sites where lead-based materials were once used or produced
  • Metal fabrication and machining shops that handle raw metals
  • Glassblowing factories, especially those that make products using lead crystal
  • Industrial factories that emit high levels of fumes

While lead in soil is most common in these areas, it can exist anywhere. It is important to test soil for lead if you have any concerns about its presence. 

Contact Us for Lead Testing

Lead exposure from soil can be dangerous and lead to long-term health problems. Alpha Environmental’s team of professionals will perform reliable lead testing, help you interpret the results and recommend any necessary steps to reduce your exposure. 

Contact us today to learn more about lead testing in soil.

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Why Choose Alpha Environmental

Our goal is to get the job done right while protecting our client. We are committed to ensuring you are safe in your residence, no matter what. We are fully licensed, bonded, insured, and here to help with all of your environmental needs.

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For over two decades we've been doing the dirty work, serving residential and commercial customers in the greater Portland area

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David D.
Lake Oswego, OR
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My wife and I experienced a hot water pipe busting in the crawlspace. It has been a total nightmare. However, Chris and his team provided expert quality care, with timeliness and the greatest degree of professionalism. I would HIGHLY recommend Alpha Enviornmental!
Zhanna S.
Beaverton, OR
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Can’t say enough about Alpha Environmental! Their costumer service is 10/10, they have really good systems in place, responsive, and professional. The gals in the scheduling department are always so kind! As a real estate agent, I use Alpha’s services numerous times a year. Either it’s for Mold bids, oil tank decommissioning, radon etc. They always do a fantastic job! Thank you for all the work you do!
Kristen L.
Portland, OR
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Wow where do I even begin?? We’re absolutely thrilled by the work Alpha has done for us and we’re eternally grateful to them for ridding our house of asbestos tile! They’re polite, kind, professional — from estimator Filo to manager Dame to Jake, Melvin and the other two guys on the crew (so sorry we didn’t get your names) — you guys are awesome and we so appreciate your help. Our house looks amazing. The peace of mind you’ve given us is priceless. We can’t thank you enough. We’ll certainly be in back in touch if we ever need any of your services again. Thank you thank you!!!
Jeff S.
Salem, OR
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Alpha environmental's employees were punctual, pleasant to work with and there services are reasonably priced. I highly recommend them because I would use them again in the future.
Lea C.
Tualatin, OR
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Took a water sample in for lead testing and they were so fast and helpful. Rodolfo was so nice and informative in explaining the testing and what it meant! Would definitely recommend everyone to go there and will go to them for any future needs!
Claire B.
Portland, OR
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Alpha environmental was extremely helpful in navigating me through the process of testing some leftover construction debris for asbestos so I could take it to the dump. Their office manager spent time with me on the phone discussing the options for sample collection, and was extremely friendly in answering my many questions. Sample drop off at the office was easy and the results even came back a few days earlier than expected. Will definitely return if I need more sampling done!
Jeff C.
Tigard, OR
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I would highly recommend anyone wanting, quick efficient services relating to environmental testing to check out Alpha Environmental. Not only was the staff friendly and responsive, but also professional! If I could 6 stars out of 5, I would!
Jotham P.
Portland, OR
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We used Alpha Environmental Services to conduct our home inspection, radon testing, sewer scope and oil tank decommissioning. Every part of their service was really professional. They took so many great photos of the house during the inspection and offered lots of explanation on what they found. Great team. Highly recommend!
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