What is radon and where does it come from?Answer
Radon is an odorless, colorless, and tasteless gas that results from the natural decomposition of uranium in the soil and water. It’s a form of radiation that is known to be carcinogenic (cancer-causing).
What are the chances that I have a problem with radon?Answer
Radon levels can vary dramatically from one location to another, so there’s really no good answer. Houses that are only a few feet apart can have very different amounts of radon. However, many counties in Southeast Michigan fall within the EPA’s “Zone 1,” which means that many homes may have radon levels that are too high (at or above 4 picocuries per liter), and, therefore, should undergo mitigation.
The radon level in my house was above the 4.0 pCi/L minimum. Do I need to see my doctor?Answer
It’s a good idea to tell your doctor so that this information is in your medical file. Plus, your doctor is the best person to help you decide whether screening for lung cancer makes sense.
How can I lower the radon level in my house if it is above the amount the EPA says is too high (4.0 pico curies)?Answer
How do you test for radon?Answer
Where do you test for radon?Answer
Because radon leaks out of the ground, we test somewhere in the lowest area of the house, such as in a basement. Ideally, we want to test where people spend most of their time, such as in a basement bedroom or family room.
If you think there’s any chance of radon in your home, give us a call!
How do you know whether I have a radon problem?Answer
Radon is measured in pico curies, a unit of measure used for radiation. If your tests indicate an average of 4.0 or higher, you need to contact a radon mitigation specialist.
Do you also eliminate the radon if my levels are too high?Answer
No, we only test for radon. But if you need an mitigation specialist, we can give you tips on what to look for.
My neighbor tested for radon and had a low (or high) reading; does that mean my level is also likely to be low (or high)?Answer
I don’t see or smell anything that suggests we have a problem. Do I really need to test my house for radon?Answer
Because radon is odorless, tasteless, and colorless, you won’t be able to see or smell anything, and exposure symptoms may not appear for many years. But radon is the most common cause of lung cancer among non-smokers, and second most common cause among smokers, so the risk is real. If you don’t test your house for radon, you won’t know what risk you could be facing. Call us and you’ll know.
If you don’t see it or smell it, how do you know where to test for radon?Answer
Radon comes from the soil, so it’s best to test for it in the lowest part of the house, such as a basement, and in rooms where people spend more time, like family rooms, bedrooms, or playrooms.
My house is brand new, so do I really need to test for radon?Answer
Since radon can be anywhere, the age of the house has no bearing on the amount of radon present. The US EPA recommends testing for radon whenever buying or selling a house.
I’m buying an older house. It was never tested, but the sellers said they haven’t had any problems; no lung cancer, for example. Do I really need to worry about radon?Answer
I tested my house for radon several years ago, and the amount was fine. So, is it necessary to test my house again?Answer
If it’s been more than a few years, there are two reasons why you should have your house tested again:
- The amount of radon around or under your house can change over time.
- Your living habits may have changed. For example, if you’ve recently retired, you may be spending more time at home, exposing you to more radon. Or you may have completed a remodeling project, like a finished basement, or an added bedroom, which means you or a loved may be spending more time in a different area.
Do I have to leave my house while it’s being tested for radon? How does that work?Answer
No, you don’t have to leave your house. But you do need to keep the windows closed during the testing, and only open doors as much as necessary to go in and out.
Do I need to do anything special to test the house for radon?Answer
Keep all windows closed for at least 12 hours before the start of the test, and only open doors long enough to go in or out. You should also run the furnace or air conditioning as you normally would. Except for keeping windows and doors closed, the test should be conducted under your normal living conditions.
When is a good time to test for radon?Answer
Radon levels can vary during the year. They tend to be a lower in the Summer, but this may be due to having windows open, which would allow radon to escape.
The only time when radon testing should not be conducted is during severe storms or periods of very windy weather.
I’m confused by all of the radon test kits. What kind do you use?Answer
We use the E-Perm system from Rad Elec Inc. This system is used throughout the world (more than 30 countries) and is listed as one of the most widely-used device in the US. Unlike some test kits, the E-Perm system is not affected by temperature or humidity.
Why should I call you to do radon testing in my house?Answer
Here are the main reasons why you should have us test your house for radon:
- You don’t have to decide which testing device to use, and then go buy it. We already have right device.
- Our experience means that we will run run the test properly, and in the right location.
- We understand what factors can affect the test.
- We know how to interpret the test results.
- Our test system is actually comprised of 2 samplers, so your test is actually based on 2 tests making it more accurate.