If you are like most people, you view your home as your safe place away from the rest of the world. This is a space where you and your loved ones should feel comfortable and be free of concerns. However, there may be hidden dangers in the home that can be difficult to detect on your own, such as radon. Learn about the dangers of radon in the home and how to keep your home safe for your family.
What is Radon?
Radon is an odorless, invisible, naturally occurring gas. Radon gas typically enters a home through the ground soil. This gas is most common in soil and igneous rock, but it may also be found in well water. Its unique nature allows it to easily penetrate through wood, drywall, concrete, insulation and other common building materials. Some home foundations may actually suction this gas out of the rocks, and well-sealed homes may trap this gas inside the structure. This means that radon can easily enter a home and accumulate to dangerous levels because it is undetectable without a professional radon test.
The Dangers of Radon in the Home
Radon is a known carcinogen, and the Environmental Protection Agency has linked it to thousands of cancer-related deaths each year, specifically lung cancer. Children and smokers may be more vulnerable to the dangers of radon in the home, but all individuals who breathe in this carcinogen may be at risk. Long-term exposure to high levels is particularly dangerous. The EPA recommends that mitigation steps are taken for any levels of 4 pCi/L or above.
Identifying and Treating Radon in the Home
Because radon cannot be detected through sight, taste, or smell, you must test for its presence. Professionals test for radon using high-quality, sensitive equipment that returns accurate results in a timely manner. One of the best ways to prevent radon from entering the home is to use a sub-slab depressurization system. This prevents the foundation from suctioning the gas up out of the soil and it may block the gas from entering the home. If radon is present in the home, improving ventilation is essential.
The home may need to be properly ventilated for a period of time before the radon is completely removed from the home, and ventilation strategies are helpful to avoid future issues with radon. Once you have a radon test performed, discuss the results with your inspector. If further action is recommended, a radon mitigation specialist can provide an effective plan for your situation.
Radon may be present in your home today and could be impacting your family’s health without your knowledge. Now is the time to test your home for radon and to take preventive or treatment steps.
Polar Home Inspections is an NRPP Certified Radon Service P