The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency defines high-risk homes as follows:
- Homes with a lead service line that connects the water main to your home’s internal plumbing;
- Homes with copper pipe and lead solder built before 1988; and
- Homes with lead pipes.
Older brass fixtures, such as faucets, valves and fittings, also may contain lead.
In 1986, Congress enacted the “lead ban,” which stated that not only public water systems, but also anyone else who intends to install or repair drinking water plumbing connected to a public water system, must use “lead-free materials.” As a result, homes built in or after 1988 are far less likely to have lead solder.