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Locust Grove, Virginia 22508

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Beware is there a silent killer called lurking under your Virginia or Maryland home?

You can’t see touch or smell radon gases. Radon comes from the decay of radioactive material in the earth. Radon is everywhere. Radon is in my house and radon is outside. The EPA has determined that if the level of radon in your home is more than 4.0 pCi/L you should have a radon remediation. Radon has been linked to lung cancer. Is radon more prevalent in some areas than others? Please see the EPA’s Map all houses should be tested for radon.

Click on tabs below for more information, guides, and pamphlets from the EPA. 

How is radon tested?

There are basically two types of tests for radon. There is a charcoal test for sure short-term testing. You can buy a radon test kit from Lowe’s or Home Depot. You will have to follow the instructions on the test kit this usually involves opening the canisters or containers for two to three days and exposing them to the air in the house. You will then sill up the canisters or containers and then mail them off to a testing laboratory. If you followed the instructions correctly this is usually an accurate test. The downside is that this might take a week to two weeks to get the results. Another type of test is an electronic test like the one that Home Inspection Carolina uses. The radon machine is put in the home that takes a reading every hour. It then averages the readings at the end of the test period. The advantage of this type of test is that you know the results in a short period of time. Either way you decide to test your house there are a few things to keep in mind. During the time of the testing do not operate fans that bring in air from outside. It is okay to run the heating or air conditioning because it is circulating air inside the home. You should close your windows and doors at least 12 hours before beginning the test. You shouldn’t conduct test during a storm or a time of high winds. When using a test kit, you should place the test kit and the lowest level of the home. Do not place the test kit in a bathroom or kitchen or along an exterior wall.

What does your inspection test results mean?

The average level of radon and most Virginia and Maryland homes is 1.8 pCi/L. and the outside air is about .o4 pCi/L. Although radon mitigation in most homes can be reduce it to a level of lower than 2.0 pCi/L. The EPA believes that any radon exposure carries some risk. A person can reduce their risk of lung cancer by lowering their radon level. If your test results are below 4 pCi/L, you should still test again sometime in the future. How Can Radon Level be reduced in your Virginia and Maryland area home?

There is always some risk with radon since there is no known safe level of radon. The risks can be reduced by lowering the level in your home. The primary system used to reduce radon levels is a vent pipe system and a fan. This pulls radon from beneath the house and vents it to the outside this is known as the soil suction radon reduction system. The good news is that it does not require major changes to your home and it is relatively inexpensive. Some of the ways to reduce radon in your home can be seen in the EPA’s consumer guide to radon reduction. The cost of reducing radon in your home can vary depending on the type of construction you have. Reducing high radon levels does require technical knowledge and special skills. Make sure you use a contractor who is trained to fix radon problems. A trained qualified radon contractor can study the problem in your house and pick the right treatment method. If you are considering installing a radon mitigation system, RMJ Home Inspections recommends that you contact your state radon office for assistance and guidance.

What are the risks of living in a house with high radon levels?

Radioactive particles come from the decay of radon gas. These radioactive particles get trapped in your lungs when you breathe. When they break down futher to particles release small bursts of energy. This causes tissue in your lungs to be damaged and can lead to lung cancer over the course of your lifetime. Not everyone who is exposed to radon will get lung cancer. If someone smokes and they are exposed to high radon levels this is an especially serious health risk. Children have a higher risk than adults. Getting lung cancer from radon exposure depends on whether you are a smoker or have smoked, the amount of time you spend in your house, and how much radon is in your house. Radon is the second leading calls of lung cancer. Should I get my Virginia and Maryland home tested for radon?

The only way to know if you or your family are at risk from radon is to test. The Surgeon General recommends testing all homes for radon. The EPA recommends testing all schools for radon. Testing is inexpensive and easy. Remember there are two types of test. You can buy the canisters test that Lowe’s or Home Depot or call RMJ Home Inspections to have the electronic test. For more radon information please visit the EPA’s website