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2014-01-15 13:19:57
January is Radon Action Month
Radon in the home

What is Radon?

 

Radon is a naturally occurring, colorless, tasteless gas that is caused by the decay of uranium in soil.  

Radon can seep into homes, schools, and office buildings through cracks and other openings in the foundation.  The United States Surgeon General warns that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer, next to smoking.  

Even extremely high levels of radon in a structure can be reduced to safe levels through proper methods of mitigation.  

The state of Utah bears a substantial portion of the health care costs related to  

radon.  The residents of Utah, including children, women, men, and the elderly are all potentially at risk; it is estimated that as high as 30% of homes in Utah could have unsafe levels of radon exposure.

Testing for radon gas is relatively simple and inexpensive; and the increased education and awareness of the harmful effects of radon exposure will help save and preserve the lives of Utah residents.

How to Test for Radon?

 

You can't see radon, but it's not hard to find out if you have a radon problem in your home. All you need to do is test for radon. Testing is easy and should only take a few minutes of your time.

The amount of radon in the air is measured in 'picoCuries per liter of air,' or 'pCi/L.' Sometimes test results are expressed in Working Levels (WL) rather than picoCuries per liter (pCi/L) (4 pCi/L equals to 0.016 WL). There are many kinds of low-cost 'do-it-yourself' radon test kits you can get through the mail and in hardware stores and other retail outlets. If you prefer, or if you are buying or selling a home, you can hire a qualified tester to do the testing for you. You should first contact your state radon office about obtaining a list of qualified testers. You can also contact a private radon proficiency program for lists of privately certified radon professionals serving your area.

 

There are Two General Ways to Test for Radon

 

Short-Term Testing

 

The quickest way to test is with short-term tests. Short-term tests remain in your home for two days to 90 days, depending on the device. 'Charcoal canisters,' 'alpha track,' 'electret ion chamber,' 'continuous monitors,' and 'charcoal liquid scintillation' detectors are most commonly used for short-term testing. Because radon levels tend to vary from day to day and season to season, a short-term test is less likely than a long-term test to tell you your year-round average radon level. If you need results quickly, however, a short-term test followed by a second short-term test may be used to decide whether to fix your home (see Home Sales).

Long-Term Testing

Long-term tests remain in your home for more than 90 days. 'Alpha track' and 'electret' detectors are commonly used for this type of testing. A long-term test will give you a reading that is more likely to tell you your home's year-round average radon level than a short-term test.

 
 

January is National Radon Action Month.  If you want to test your home yourself Dr Home Air is giving 10% off their radon tests for January.  If you would prefer a licensed professional to come and test your home, contact Matt for our preferred Vendor List.

 
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