Radon is a radioactive gas which be found in homes in all areas of the United States. Radon comes from the natural decay of uranium buried underground. When this radioactive gas works it’s way to the surface, it can get into your home through cracks and holes in the home’s foundation. And make no mistake, this gas that you can’t touch, smell or see can be hazardous to your health.
A natural danger
Most people are aware that smoking is the number one cause of lung cancer. Few people are aware that Radon is number two. The EPA estimates that Radon causes 20,000 people in the United States to die each year. Furthermore, the EPA reports that almost 15% of US homes has elevated levels of Radon. When this deadly gas accumulates in closed in areas, prolonged exposure can eventually, be as deadly as smoking.
The closed in areas most likely to accumulate radon are the basement and crawl spaces. However, any closed in space is susceptible to accumulation. And the more time you spend in those areas, the higher your exposure levels will be.
Where Can Radon Be Found?
Again, radon can be anywhere in the US. Here, in Monmouth County,17.5% of homes have radon levels which are over the acceptable limit. And just because your neighbor’s home doesn’t have elevated levels of radon doesn’t mean that your homes doesn’t. In fact, the results can change over time. A home that was free of radon can change into one that does have radon.
How Do I Know If My Home Has Radon?
When a home changes ownership, the home inspection process often includes a radon test. To test for Radon, a test kit is left open in the testing area (a basement) for 3 – 5 days, then sent to a lab. After which, a report will be returned stating whether or not elevated levels exist. However, you also have the option of performing a radon test in your home. The kits are inexpensive and have simple to follow instructions.
What to do if high levels are found?
Remediation to decrease high levels is easy. All you need to do is write a check. A contractor does the work. Typically a hole is made in the basement,crawl space or foundation slab and a plastic pipe is inserted which vents the radon gas outside the home to dissipate. A fan is included inline with the pipe to draw the radon out.
Many homes in the Freehold area have high levels of Radon. Please get your home tested, because your life could depend on it.
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