How does it enter homes and buildings?
We know radon comes from the earth. The majority of homes in the United States are built in direct contact with the ground. Radon seeps into these homes through openings and pores in the foundation. Some common radon entry points are: foundation cracks, slab cracks, cold & expansion joints, sump pump basins, openings around plumbing pipes, dirt/gravel crawlspaces and the pores of the concrete itself. Homes tend to have a stack effect. A stack effect is the natural rise of air in the home that causes suction on the perimeter walls, windows, doors and floors. This suction can draw radon in from the soil. Radon is heavier than air so it tends to be in greater concentrations in lower portions of a home or building.
How to know if radon is entering your home or building.
Test for radon using a radon DIY test kit or hire a radon measurement professional. Our licensed and certified professionals at Protect Environmental can conduct professional radon testing for your home. We offer this service in the markets we serve and also sell DIY test kits that can be shipped anywhere in the U.S. from our partners at RAdata Lab. Radon test kits can be short-term or long-term. Do-it-yourself radon test kits are a reliable option, they’re accurate as long as they are placed correctly and returned to the lab in a timely fashion.
Electronic radon measurement devices measure radon levels by the hour for a typical time frame of 48 hours. The device provides radon data to show fluctuations over time and gives an overall average of radon concentrations in the home. Typically, a DIY radon test kit works great for a homeowner who wants to check their home for their own health because they are affordable and simple. Electronic radon measurement devices are most often used in real estate transactions because time is of the essence and results can be provided sooner.
How much radon is too much?
No level of radon gas is safe. The EPA has established the number 4 pCi/L as the action level to fix radon gas levels in homes, buildings and schools. They say to reduce levels greater than 4 and get them as low as reasonably achievable. The World Health Organization has designated the level of 2.7 pCi/L as their action level. Most people begin to get concerned about radon when the levels are greater than 2 pCi/L. If you have tested for radon and it was under 4 pCi/L, remember that those levels can fluctuate throughout the year. Make sure to test during different seasons to get an accurate idea if radon is a problem in your home. Checking the radon levels in your home and addressing the issue can be straightforward, contact us for professional radon testing.
How do we prevent exposure?
We can reduce exposure to radon gas by installing a radon mitigation system. These systems are a permanently installed radon prevention system. They are installed in the home and create constant ventilation in the soil under the foundation. The radon gas is captured by the suction of the radon system and carried through a series of pipes. A specialty fan exhausts it to a safe elevation above the eaves of the home. People ask, “what happens to the radon when it vents out the system?” The gas quickly dilutes into the atmosphere to negligible levels. Radon is naturally occurring and exists in very small amounts in the air outdoors. Preventing it from accumulating to harmful levels in your home is important to protect your lungs by reducing your chance of exposure.
Test My Home!
Professional radon testing is the first step to making your home a safe place to breathe.