Frequently Asked Questions About Radon Gas:
What is Radon Gas?
Radon is a radioactive gas that is found throughout the United States and the World. It is odorless, tasteless and colorless. Radon gas comes from the decomposition of Uranium and Radium within the soil from under the home. Radon occurs naturally.
How does Radon Gas enter the home?
Radon is drawn into the home through cracks in the foundation walls and concrete floor of the basement due to pressure differentials between the soil and the home. When Radon Gas is present in the water supply, it will off-gas into the air during normal domestic water usage. Testing your homes’ indoor air & water supply is the only way to find out if your home as a Radon issue.
What are the health risks for Radon Gas exposure?
Prolonged exposure to Radon Gas is the #1 cause of lung cancer, among non-smokers, in the United States.
How do I test my home for Radon Gas?
- If testing during a Real Estate transaction, Radon testing should be conducted in the lowest “potentially” livable level of your home, that does not require “significant” renovation to create a livable space. (A normal, unfinished basement usually qualifies as potentially livable space.)
- Otherwise, a homeowner can test in the lowest “lived in” level of the home.
Tests should be placed in areas that are used frequently, like a basement family room. Duplicate testing (two test vials), should be exposed in the same area in order to get an average of both test vials. You should not place one test vial in the basement, and another test vial on the first
floor living space to get an average of the two. Avoid testing in bathrooms and kitchens because moisture and severe temperature changes can adversely effect the test.
When should I test for Radon?
Although, Radon testing is most commonly performed during a routine home inspection during a Real Estate transaction, every homeowner should test their home for Radon Gas.
If possible, Radon Air testing should not be conducted during severe, adverse weather conditions, due to the increase in the outdoor atmospheric pressure, in relation to the homes’ indoor air pressure.
If you do not already have an “active” radon air system installed in your home, you should test for Radon every year.
If your retesting to insure that your “active” Radon system is still working, a retest every two years is fine.
What is an acceptable indoor Radon level?
The Environmental Protection Agency currently recommends that levels at the "action level" of 4.0 pCi/L or above, should be addressed and action should be taken to reduce the radon levels.
What does an average Radon Air Mitigation System Cost?
The cost of installing an active Radon system will vary with the type of structure and locality. Various system vent pipe routes and/or the potential for multiple suction points will determine the cost of installing an Active Radon Mitigation System. Many other factors, like accessible Crawlspaces, Floor Drains and Sump Pump Holes, are also contributing factors.