According to the EPA, 1 out of every 15 U.S. homes has radon levels above the recommended guideline of 4 picoCuries per liter (pCi/L) and recommends that all homes should test for radon, regardless of geographic location. Prolonged radon exposure in these contaminated homes leads to a 50% increase in lung cancer risk.

In this way, is radon testing really necessary?

Radon is a radioactive gas and exposure to it causes 21,000 lung cancer deaths per year—only smoking causes more. Because you can't see, smell or taste radon, it's important to periodically test the air in your home. Believing you live in a region not affected by radon is just one of the myths about this deadly gas.

Also, is radon really that dangerous? When radon gas enters the body, it exposes the lungs to small amounts of radiation. In small quantities, experts say this is harmless. However, in persistent exposures or larger quantities, radon can damage the cells of the lining of the lungs, increasing a person's chance of developing lung cancer.

Similarly, it is asked, what are the symptoms of radon in your home?

Possible symptoms include shortness of breath (difficulty breathing), a new or worsening cough, pain or tightness in the chest, hoarseness, or trouble swallowing. If you smoke and you know you've been exposed to high levels of radon, it's very important to quit smoking.

How many Radon detectors are needed?

For a standard house, a kit of two detectors will be required so that one detector can be placed in a ground floor living room and one in a first floor bedroom.

Related Question Answers

Would you buy a house with radon?

Radon can seep into any home that is in contact with the ground. It is undetectable unless you perform a radon test. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer and according to the EPA and CDC, it kills more than 20,000 annually. It is not something you want in the home you are buying.

How much does it cost to get rid of radon?

The cost of fixing a home generally ranges from $800 to $2500 (with an average cost of $1200). Your costs may vary depending on the size and design of your home and which radon reduction methods are needed.

What states have the most radon?

The ten states with the highest levels of radon are:
  • Alaska.
  • South Dakota.
  • Pennsylvania.
  • Ohio.
  • Washington.
  • Montana.
  • Kentucky.
  • Idaho.

Where is Radon most commonly found?

Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas which may be found in indoor environments such as homes, schools, and workplaces. Radon is the most important cause of lung cancer after smoking.

How much does a radon inspection cost?

Average Radon Inspection Costs

Typical inspections average between $150 and $300. Home size and region affect the cost. Some inspectors test for radon during a general home inspection. A professional can detect whether you have a problem and the severity of it.

How do you get rid of radon gas in your home?

Install a layer of gas-permeable aggregate, such as four inches of gravel, beneath the slab or flooring system of your home if you don't have a crawlspace. Cover this layer or your crawlspace floor with plastic sheeting to stop radon gas from moving past that level and into your home.

Does opening windows reduce radon?

Opening windows improves air circulation and ventilation, helping move radon out of the house and mixing radon-free outside air with indoor air. Opening basement windows helps reduce negative air pressure, diluting radon with clean outdoor air.

Where Is radon a problem in the US?

Radon is present everywhere in the United States. Levels of the gas differ from state to state, but it is particularly high in North Dakota and Iowa. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Map of Radon Zones shows the potential for elevated radon levels for each county in the United States.

How long do you have to be exposed to radon before it becomes a problem?

If a person has been exposed to radon, 75 percent of the radon progeny in lungs will become “harmless” lead particles after 44 years. When an alpha particle damages a cell to make it cancerous, the onset of lung cancer takes a minimum of 5 years but most often 15 to 25 years, and even longer.

Do all basements have radon?

Most commonly homes with basements are suspect for having higher radon levels. The fact that porous foundation walls allow radon gas to enter a home is no secret and with most basements containing a sump well, there are many access points from which radon can enter a home.

Does Radon make you tired?

The more uranium there is, the more radon there is. That makes radon the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking. But even minor symptoms like headaches, feeling unusually tired, itching or burning eyes, irritated skin, nasal congestion, a dry throat or nausea could be due to your home's indoor air quality.

How common is radon gas in homes?

Radon is a common problem in homes throughout the country — as many as one in 15 U.S. homes has high levels of radon, according to the EPA. But certain geographic regions are more likely to be affected.

Is radon heavier than air?

Radon gas is approximately 7.5 times heavier than air. It is however a noble gas with no chemical affinity but is easily influenced by air movements and pressure. In a house with forced air heating and cooling, radon gas can easily be distributed throughout the entire dwelling.

How often should you test for radon?

Living pattern changes

Whenever there is a change in your home, you should perform local radon testing. It's also recommended that you test your home for radon at least twice a year too. If your tests come back unusually high, then you should order one or two more tests so that you can compare the results.

Is it safe to live in a home with a radon mitigation system?

If the level falls between 2.0 and 4.0 pCi/L, a mitigation system is beneficial and is strongly encouraged if there will be current or ex-smokers in the home. A level of 4.0 pCi/L and higher is considered extremely dangerous to live in, and mitigation should be performed either before you move, or shortly thereafter.

How do you test for radon in your home?

You can buy test kits at home improvement stores, hardware stores, or online. To order a test kit over the phone, call the National Radon Hotline at 1-800-SOS-RADON (1-800-767-7236). If your home has a radon level of 4 or higher, it's time to take action.

What is a bad radon level?

Radon levels are measured in picocuries per liter, or pCi/L. Levels of 4 pCi/L or higher are considered hazardous. Radon levels less than 4 pCi/L still pose a risk and in many cases can be reduced, although it is difficult to reduce levels below 2 pCi/L.

Should I worry about radon in my home?

The average home has about 1.3 pCi/L of radon. Such levels aren't enough to worry about, but under the right conditions, they could make you sick. According to the EPA, a nonsmoker who was exposed to average levels of radon for a lifetime would have a 1 in 500 risk of developing lung cancer.

How much does it cost to fix a radon problem in your home?

The cost of a mitigation system may vary according to the home's design, size, foundation, construction materials and the local climate. Radon reduction systems average costs nationally are $1,200 with a range from $800 to $1500 common depending on house and market conditions.