What is Radon?
Radon is a radioactive gas that is part of the radioactive decay chain of naturally occurring uranium in soil. Radon is also the 6th noble gas in the periodic table as the 86th element.
Where Does It Come From?
Radon enters your home from underneath your house through cracks and holes in your concrete foundation, or if you live above a crawlspace, from the soil itself. Typically people think that radon is only in basements, however it can exist in high levels regardless of what kind of foundation you have.
You can’t see it, you can’t smell it and you can’t taste it.
Why Should I be Concerned About Radon?
Radon is qualified by the USEPA as a Class A Carcinogen, which means the element causes cancer in humans. When radon breaks down in your lungs, it emits radiation that can damage the DNA in your lungs, eventually causing lung cancer.
If I Can’t See Radon, How Do I Know If I Have It In My House?
By using special equipment we can measure how much is in your house. Radon is everywhere, we already know that there is some amount of radon in your house. What we want to help you find out is how much of it you have. The only way to know if you have a high level of radon is through testing.
What Do I Do If I Have a High Level of Radon?
The USEPA action level for radon is 4.0 picocuries per liter of air (pCi/L). The risk of developing lung cancer at 4.0 pCi/L is estimated at about 7 lung cancer deaths per 1000 persons. That is why the USEPA recommends reducing your radon level if the concentration is 4.0 pCi/L or more. You can reduce the levels of radon in your home by using mitigation efforts. There are many different ways to mitigate a home, and each home has different requirements. AmeriChoice Radon Testing, Inc does not mitigate radon. We instead vet local contractors and help you find a high quality service provider who can perform the mitigation quickly and at a reasonable cost.
We can’t see radon, but by using a special device called a cloud chamber, you can see the trails left by the alpha radiation that radon emits. Universities use cloud chambers to illustrate the dangers of radioactive elements.
Top Causes of In-Home Death in the U.S.
In deaths per year
* 2009 National Safety Council; Centers for Disease Control
Approximately 21,000 deaths per year can be attributed to radon induced lung cancer, making it the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers.
Common Radon Myths
I Have A Radon Mitigation System, I Don’t Need To Test.
The USEPA recommends testing:
- Every two years
- In opposite seasons
- When significant structure changes are made
- When HVAC changes are made
I Don’t Feel Well When I’m At Home, It Has To Be Radon.
Unlike carbon monoxide and many other home pollutants, radon’s adverse health effect, lung cancer, is usually not produced immediately. Thus you may be exposed to radon for many years without ever suspecting its presence in your home. The reason why you may not feel well in your home while you are only at home we can say with confidence is not radon. While we do recommend radon testing if your results are old, we most likely will not find the other culprits.
I’m Selling My House And I Was Told To Air It Out.
Closed building conditions are required for 12 hours before the beginning of a test and throughout the test. This can negatively impact your results, and is a criminal offence. Opening windows can actually increase the levels of radon detected, as shown by the image below. These are real results from our detectors.
My House Tested At A Level Of 3.9 pCi/L. I Don’t Need To Mitigate.
While 3.9 pCi/L is below the recommended action level, the USEPA urges that homeowners consider reducing radon levels in homes that have concentrations of 2.0 pCi/L – 4.0 pCi/L.