Whether you are buying a home or already own one, it is extremely crucial to get the radon levels tested in your house. This is because radon increases the risks of lung cancer and getting it tested is the only way to determine the elevated levels of radon present in your home.
Here are 5 frequently asked questions about radon in homes.
What is Radon?
Created from natural deposits of uranium and radium in the soil, radon is a radioactive and invisible gas. When radon gas enters a building, it can accumulate in amounts that can raise the risk of developing lung cancer. Radon escapes easily from the ground into the air, where it decays and produces further radioactive particles. Shortness of breath (difficulty breathing), a new or worsening cough, pain or tightness in the chest, hoarseness, or difficulty in swallowing are all possible symptoms of radon in your home. Before purchasing a home, radon testing should always be carried out.
Why should I be concerned about Radon?
Radon is a Group A carcinogen and continuous exposure to this gas causes cancer. Many buyers want to test for and address radon concerns because they are worried about their health risks and the property’s ability to be sold again. Through a proper radon testing service, you can ensure that you keep your home safe.
Radon is found in all types of homes, not just those with basements. Radon can be found in homes that have a crawlspace or are built on a slab. The amount of radon is primarily determined by the concentration of uranium in the soil deep beneath the home. As a result, the number of people testing their homes, schools, and workplaces is steadily increasing.
- Long-term exposure to radon levels over 4.0 picoCuries per liter (pCi/L) is harmful.
- The only way to determine the radon exposure levels is by opting for a radon testing service for your home.
How is Radon Testing performed?
If you’re thinking about testing your property for radon, you probably want to know what that involves. If you hire professional radon testers, they will use certified and calibrated systems to assess current radon levels in the air. Radon testing involves determining the levels of radon in your home using devices such as electret ion detectors, alpha track detectors, charcoal liquid scintillation devices, and continuous radon monitors.
A short-term radon test, which is the most common type of test, is carried out for at least 48 hours
– The radon detector is placed in the lowest livable space in the home that could be occupied or lived in.
– All of the windows in the house are closed during the test and must remain closed throughout. All the exterior doors must also be kept closed when not being used to enter or exit your home.
– There are various types of radon detection devices available, but most radon testing service providers use an electronic detector known as a Continuous Radon Monitor.
How to Interpret Radon Test Results?
If a short-term radon test is performed in the lowest portion of a home that could be occupied, with all exterior doors and windows closed for at least two days, it can be concluded that:
– If the result is less than 4.0 pCi/L, it is recommended to get tested again at a later date or doing long-term testing. Results are normally lower in the summer, so we recommend testing later in the year for a more accurate average. Furthermore, while this is below the recommended EPA action levels, no level of radon is “safe”.
– If the level is at or above 4.0 pCi/L, a mitigation system should be installed.
How is Radon Mitigated?
Radon is reduced by installing a system that pulls radon gas from the soil beneath the concrete slab and vents it outside of the building, far enough from windows and other openings so that it cannot re-enter.
- A radon reduction system typically consists of a schedule 40 PVC pipe running to the soil via a hole in the concrete slab of the lowest level in a home or building, a sump lid connection, or access beneath a plastic sheet in a crawl space.
- A quiet, continuously operating fan attached to the pipe discharges the radon outdoors.
With the right radon mitigation system, a home can be safe for you and your family. If the home you are looking to buy has high levels of radon, it doesn’t mean you have to walk away from it. If radon is found in the home you live in, you don’t have to worry about your family’s safety. With the help of advanced technologies, radon reduction can be easy and affordable.