How Important is Radon Testing in Your New Home?
September 6, 2016
Owning a home comes with a lot of benefits and a lot of responsibilities. When you own a home, you own the property and the land. You can do what you want with the home and the land. You can remodel your home and you can make additions or upgrades that suit you and your family members. However, owning a home also required upkeep and repairs to ensure that the home is a safe living home. Repairs that are not made can make the home dangerous to those living in and those visiting the home. Neglect in testing for harmful contaminants and air pollutants can be dangerous for those who spend a lot of time in the home. Most people are aware of the required repairs in a home, but too many people neglect the air testing and pollutant quality levels.
Radon is a gas that can be very dangerous to those living near it. When radon is consistently breathed in, it can lead to dangerous medical conditions. Radon testing often exists in basements or in homes that are on lower levels. Radon is not visible to the human eye and it is likely that you will not be able to smell it. Most people realize they have a radon problem in their home after testing occurs from an emergence of medical conditions. Local radon testing is not always required when new homes receive inspections, but it is a test that should not be overlooked.
Most states and counties have minimum radon levels. If the home has levels above these minimum amounts, they are considered to be unsafe for living. The home may not be approved for occupancy and it may be declined for a sale, when mortgages are involved. However, if the homeowner never tests for the radon, they are never even aware of the high radon levels. According to the US EPA, nearly 1 in 3 homes checked in seven states on three Indian lands had screening levels over 4 pCi L, the EPA?s recommended action level for radon exposure. The problem is that these areas are very rarely tested.
Radon levels that are higher than these minimum standards are very serious. A family whose home has radon levels of 4 pCil is exposed to approximately 35 times as much radiation as the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would allow if that family was standing next to the fence of a radioactive waste site. It is important to have a radon testing contractor test your home if you are newly purchasing the home or if you or any family member is experiencing any frequent medical concerns. It may also be a good idea to have a radon testing contractor if your home is older and has never been tested for its radon levels.
A radon testing contractor will complete a series of tests to measure the levels of radon in the air in the home. If the radon testing reveals high levels of radon, then radon mitigation will be needed. A radon mitigation company may be separate from the radon testing contractor. The radon mitigation services will involve installing ventilation fans and removing some materials. Passive systems of mitigation have been shown to be capable of reducing indoor radon levels by more than 50%. When radon ventilation fans are added, radon levels can even be reduced further.
Owning a home provides many benefits to the homeowner. However, with the reward of home ownership comes responsibility. A homeowner needs to ensure that their house is safe and healthy for those occupying it. The air quality is very important, as household members will spend a lot of time inside of the home, breathing the air of the home. Radon is just one of the possible air contaminants in a home and it can be very dangerous. Many states set minimum levels, but not enough homeowners test for it. If testing shows high levels of radon, mitigation services can reduce the levels, making the air safer and healthier for the members of the household.