Radon is a chemical element in the form of a radioactive noble gas. According to the Surgeon General, it is also the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. Roughly 1 in 15 homes in the U.S. are estimated to have radon levels that are at or above the EPA action level of 4 pCi/L and are therefore in greater danger of developing radon-induced cancer.
Although this is frightening information, there are steps you can take to keep the radon levels in your home to a safe frequency. Through radon testing and radon mitigation you can help keep your home and family safe. Below we will look at how to go about testing for radon, as well as how to improve radon test results.
Radon testing can be done with multiple types of devices. Some are short-term tests while others are more long-term, or even continuous. Short-term devices usually measure for 2 to 90 days, while long-term devices measure longer than 90 days. A continuous monitoring device can be plugged into to the wall and used to measure levels day by day for however long you need. You will want to test in the lowest livable area of your home that is used for 8 to 10 hours a week. There are also radon testing companies that you can reach out to for assistance.
If it is determined that the levels of radon in your home are too high, you will want to look into some form of radon mitigation. There are multiple types to choose from, including:
- Active suction
- Passive suction
- Pressure systems
A passive suction system is something that takes place when the home is being built, so it may not be an option. It involves building specific pressure systems into the home to help airflow move to the built in duct system that takes radon out of the home. However, you can create your own pressure systems by keeping windows and doors on the lower levels of your home closed as often as possible to build pressure that will keep radon out.
Active suction systems require an electrical vent fan and monitoring system as well as a vent pipe that all work together to keep radon from building under the home. Sub-membrane is a form of active suction and is ideal in houses that have crawl spaces.
Stay Safe: Test for Radon
The first step in keeping your family safe from radon is of course the testing, so start there as soon as possible. The sooner you know if you need mitigation, the sooner you can take the steps to make your home safe. Pick up a testing device or reach out to a radon testing company today.