Radon is a naturally occurring gas resulting from the dissociation of uranium in the soil. The tasteless, odorless, and colorless gas is highly carcinogenic. It is the second leading causative agent of lung cancer in the nation, only behind cigarette smoking. The U.S. Surgeon General estimates that radon-related cancers lead to over 26,000 deaths every year.
1. How Does Radon Enter a Home?
Radon exists naturally, with outside atmospheric levels being less than 0.4 pCi/L. The air pressure in your home is lower than that of the soil at the ground surface. The negative pressure in your basement pulls ground gases such as radon through the cracks leading to accumulation within the house. The buildup can cause the concentrations to rise above the EPA safe-limit of 4 pCi/L. The higher the levels of radon exposure, the greater the risk of developing lung cancer. The risk increases by 16% per 100 Bq/m increase in long term average radon concentration.
2. Why Do You Need to Carry Out Radon Testing?
It is vital to call in a radon testing company to ensure that your family stays safe. The only way to assertively determine whether you have excess levels of radon in your home is through testing. The EPA has reported elevated levels of radon in all 50 states, with one in every 15 homes having high levels above the 4pCi/L limit.
There are EPA-approved short-term tests that last for two to 90 days which can help you determine the radon concentration in your home. A long-term test through a radon testing company may give a better understanding of your home’s annual radon levels.
3. Why Hire a Radon Testing Contractor?
In light of the health risks involved, the EPA recommends getting a qualified radon testing company to test and fix your home. The contractors have specific technical knowledge and expertise to interpret your results. Without the right equipment or skills, you may increase the radon concentration or miss other potential hazards. Ensure that the professional is licensed, certified, and insured before they start working on your home.
4. What Do You Look for in Radon Mitigation System?
The radon abatement company can guide you in selecting the right mitigation measures for your home. You may need to keep in mind the initial levels detected by the radon testing company, the costs of installation, and your home’s foundation. You may opt for sub-membrane suction systems, foundation sealing, or home pressurization units. The radon reduction system can be divided into passive versions (lacking a fan) and active versions (with a ventilator fan.)
5. What Guarantee Do You Have That Radon Mitigation Works?
Most radon abatement systems can reduce the radon levels and maintain them at concentrations below 2 pCi/L. Most radon mitigation companies provide a written guarantee that the system will keep the radon levels in your home below the EPA safety-level of 4pCi/L. The radon testing company should also provide a detector in the systems that will alert you when there are elevated concentrations in the home.
Radon is a hazardous gas that can cause lung cancer from extended exposure. The only way to determine the levels in your home is through testing. Affordable Radon, LLC is a radon testing company that can help you determine the levels in your home and come up with mitigation measures if the concentrations exceed the recommended limit.