Radon testing in homes is recommended. Because radon is colorless, tasteless, and odorless, it is difficult to determine whether it is present in your home. No home is safe from the effects are radon gas because it occurs naturally in the soil and is found most everywhere. It can enter the home through cracks and holes that are found in the foundation and may contaminate well water as well.
Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer behind smoking and there is an even greater risk for smokers to develop radon poisoning than non-smokers. The only way that you will be able to determine how much radon is in your home is by conducting a radon test.
According to the EPA, you are recommended to install a radon gas reducing system in your home if the level of radon gas is 4 picocuries of radon per liter or higher. However, no level of radon is completely safe and there is no average level for a specific region.
It is also interesting to note that radon contamination can vary from one house to the next even if they are in close proximity to each other. Homes with basements are more likely to have a radon contamination than those without one.
Radon testing in homes
There are two types of tests that you can rely on when you are testing for radon. The first is a passive radon testing device which does not require power to complete its job. With this test, charcoal canisters, devices, and alpha track detectors will be exposed to the air that is in your home and will then be sent to a lab to be analyzed.
The next type of test is an active radon testing device. This device does require power and it will measure and record the radon in your air continuously, which will make the changes to the levels of radon in your home more apparent. These are more reliable than the passive devices and are typically used by air quality professionals.
Typically a long-term radon test is taken for longer than 90 days in order to develop an accurate idea as to how much radon is actually in your home. However, for those who are concerned about a time issue, such as new homebuyers, shorter tests are also available for use between 48 to 96 hours.
When you’re conducting a test, you should always test on the lowest level of your home and choose a room that you use regularly. You should avoid using room such as the kitchen, a hallway, laundry room or the bathroom. You should also keep all the windows and doors shut during the testing time other than for exiting in entering the room as you normally would.
Radon testing results
Your radon testing results will either show high or low radon levels. If you do find that you have high levels of radon in your home, there are steps that you should take in order to improve these levels. You will need to contact your local radon office in order to determine the proper licensed contractors that can help correct the issue and keep your family safe from radon poisoning.