Government organizations like the Department of Health highly recommend homeowners check their homes for the presence of radon. This gas is odorless, colorless, and invisible but extremely radioactive and causes lung cancer when people are frequently exposed to it indoors.
Harmful radioactive substances often find their way inside properties and buildings since they are naturally released from the soil, water, and rocks. Over time, the cracks will let them in, and too much exposure to these particles may get radon trapped in one’s lungs.
EPA has estimated that there are over 20,000 deaths from cancer caused by radon, and it’s just second to smoking and you can see more about this on this webpage. If you have never tested certain gas levels in your home, now might be the right time to do so, especially after doing a major repair, construction, or renovation.
Different Types of Kits Used
Long-Term – Nowadays, devices and equipment are available, and they will measure the amount of radon in your home for about 90 days, where it’s
Short-Term – Test kits made for the short-term will detect gas levels for 2 days up to a week. This is a good starting point for homeowners.
Produced by uranium decaying in the soil, radon generally tends to go up to the atmosphere, where it is diluted into the air. In this form, radon doesn’t produce any health risks, and it’s going to be harmless. However, it’s a different story when it goes inside an apartment, office, or residential home where the occupants can be exposed through inhalation and ingestion of the gas.
It’s measured in picocuries which are often used in various radioactive gases. Any level of exposure is not safe, but according to various agencies, you should take action when the measurements show that you have 4.0 pCi/L in your home.
The gas is going to enter a dwelling through the cavities in walls, gaps around suspended floors, pipes, water supplies, and granite finishes which typically contain uranium. In the US, high levels are present in various states, and here are some guidelines that can be of help.
Testing Guidelines for Homeowners
-Instructions on the kits should be carefully followed to get accurate results. Use the ones that are not yet expired and fill out the required information.
-Short-term testing can be done at any time of the year, but it’s still the best time to do them during the heating season.
-Weathers and severe storms can affect the radon gases in your home, so wait for it to subside before you use the test.
-Basements are the ideal location where you should take out the kits, and if you spend more than 20 hours in it, get the help of the experts if you’re unsure of what to do.
-Placement should be at a breathing level, and this translates to 20 in above the floor. Don’t go to the bathroom, kitchen, and laundry areas where the levels of humidity are higher.
Is this Needed when Buying a Property?
The short answer is yes; you need to know the radon levels in a home when you’re planning to buy a home. Here are some of the reasons why.
- You’re Dealing with an Undetectable Gas
Human senses can’t determine the presence of radon because it does not have an odor, color, or taste. Get help when you go to kcradonpros.com, which can help you ensure that you will be living in someplace that’s safe and free from harm since this is where the specialists will perform the tests on your behalf. They are also going to perform some remediation if you prefer.
- Radon is Very Dangerous
As mentioned, radon can be harmful to human health, and it has caused over 21,000 deaths already in the US alone. It’s going to damage the cells and tissues in the body when there’s frequent and too much inhalation, and if you suspect that your location is at risk, you can protect your family better by performing some tests before moving in.
- Existing Systems Might be Inadequate
Installation of ductwork, vents, and windows are some of the steps many people take to ensure that they breathe clean air. However, this might not be enough, and you may need expert intervention to remove radon and other harmful gases from your home altogether. When there’s equipment breakdown that mitigates these hazardous gas leaks, this could mean trouble for the homeowners, so take action immediately.
DIY or Getting the Help of a Company?
The kits that accurately detect radon can be purchased from $10 to $40 at a local hardware shop. Testers are highly recommended to close their doors and windows within 24 hours before they perform the test. Simply place the detector in a basement and leave it untouched for about 96 hours. You’re then required to send it to a nearby laboratory, and they will deliver the results afterwards.
Get the pros’ help if you want more accurate information about a property’s current radon levels. Choose the ones that are certified by the state or nationally trained so they can provide you with more information about their findings on their inspection. This can be an additional $150, but the results will be quicker and more accurate.
Mitigation Steps to Take
According to the experts, it’s best to install a continuous exhaust or fan system that will provide airflow in a home. It’s best to get the radon gas to achieve a more acceptable level if you can’t relocate. Call the experts for the best construction techniques, tools, and knowledge about the installation of these systems in your home. The best candidates are basement floors sitting on sump systems, drain tile, or gravel bases.
Solutions may include getting a vent pipe that has a sump pump underneath where an in-line fan is placed to draw the air from the basement and eject it to the side of the house. Qualified contractors can also use the roof for this, but placing everything on the side of the home will make it look better. Also, don’t panic if you have a significant level of radon in your home, and look for contractors who can help you fix this problem on a long-term basis.