What is Radon?
Radon is an invisible, odorless, radioactive gas that is naturally produced underground. It comes from the breakdown of radioactive elements in rocks and soil, like thorium and uranium. Outdoors, radon dissipates and is not a problem, but it is dangerous when there are high levels of radon in the home.
Radon enters buildings through holes, gaps, and cracks in the structure. Once inside, radon can accumulate to unsafe levels. When radon levels are high, exposure can potentially cause lung cancer.
There are also instances where radon will enter through well water or stone materials used for building. Regardless of whether a structure is new or old or where it is located, it may have high levels of radon.
Hire a Professional Radon Tester
The only way to learn about a radon problem in your home is to conduct a radon test. While DIY test kits are available, they are not recommended because of inaccuracies and user-error. A professional test is the most reliable way to test your home for radon. With such a serious risk, you want to be sure of the results so you can take action if needed.
What To Do About High Levels of Radon in the Home
If you have tested positive for high levels of radon in the home, there is no need to panic. It is estimated that 1 in 15 houses across the United States have unsafe levels of radon.
Fortunately, radon mitigation experts can set up a system in your home to reduce the levels of radon. This system collects radon gas from beneath the foundation and works to reroute it outside of your home using a vent. The mitigator will also seal up cracks and gaps that let radon inside to keep levels from rising again. If you are moving into a house with radon levels of 4 pCi/L or higher, hire a radon mitigation specialist or ask the seller to provide this service.
After your radon mitigation contractor installs the system, they will test your home for radon gas again. For added reassurance, it’s important to continue to test your home for radon regularly. This will verify that the radon mitigation system continues to operate correctly.