Radon is a naturally occurring noble gas, it is a decay product of uranium which is part of our environment.
Indoor Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. after smoking. Radon is a colorless and odorless gas and therefore not detected by human senses alone. What causes cancer is when radon gas decays, it produces tiny particles just the precise size that can be inhaled and deposited in the lungs. These particles will further decay and release alpha radiation that can lead to lung cancer.
The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 21,000 lung cancer deaths each year are caused by radon, and radon causes lung cancer in smokers and non-smokers alike.
Radon can be found all over the U.S. and in any type of
building, including homes, offices, and schools. 38% of all
the homes we tested in 2010 had elevated Radon Levels.
Radon gets in buildings, because the air pressure inside a building is usually lower than the pressure in the soil surrounding it. This difference causes the building to act like a vacuum and suck radon in through foundation cracks and other small openings. The greatest exposure risk to radon is in the home simply because this is where people spend most of their time.
The surgeon general recommends that all homes be tested for Radon. It’s the only way to make certain that any particular home does not have a high level of radon. Testing your home is easy and radon problems can be fixed quickly. If a test shows 4 or more pCi/L of Radon in the air, simple, effective and non-expensive action can be taken to reduce this level.
The best time to do a test is now. However, it does make it a little easier to test in the fall, winter, or spring because those are the times when you typically have your windows and doors closed anyway.
What typically is done is drilling a hole in the floor slab and tapping into that air space under the floor where the radon comes from.
A plastic pipe is installed and air from this pipe goes up through the attic where there’s a fan that runs continuously that will constantly pull air up through this pipe and exhaust it above the roof and safely outside.
If your test is above 4 pCi/L then look-up an Ohio Licensed Radon Mitigation Contractor. Radon problems can be easily fixed. Even high radon levels in most homes can be lowered to an acceptable level for about the same cost as other common home repairs. Testing and fixing radon not only gives you and your family peace of mind, but it also tells others who might want to buy your home that it is safer and healthier home. And, that’s a big benefit when buying, selling or building a new home.
John Sender, P.E. - Ohio Licensed Radon Tester - License # RT420
Created By Metro Home Inspections LLC
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