Radon tests are commonly done when purchasing a home, but should they be done other times? What exactly is Radon?  Can Radon affect my family? If you haven’t already asked these questions, you should be.

Radon is a radioactive gas found naturally in the ground and is common in Wisconsin. You can’t see it or smell it so the only way to accurately detect it is by doing a radon test in your home.  

Radon IS:

  • The leading cause of lung cancer among non smokers in the United States
  • The 2nd leading cause of lung cancer overall in the United States
  • Radon and smoking have serious health risks – together they are extremely dangerous

The 3 Main Risk Factors Are

  1. How much Radon is present in your home
  2. How much time you spend in a home where Radon is present
  3. Do you smoke?

The good news is, if Radon is you can easily test for radon and if radon is present in your home it can be mitigated. Testing for radon can be done by a certified professional and is really quite reasonable in price. The initial test should be done for a minimum of 2 days in the lowest level of a lived in floor of your home. If the test comes back with less than 4 pCi/L, your home has a low enough level of radon that further testing isn’t needed. If the level is higher than that, another short term or longer term test should be done to determine a more accurate level of radon.

While radon testing is not expensive, a mitigation system does cost a little more but is extremely important if higher levels of radon are found in your home.  Radon mitigation can average between $800 – $1500 on average nationally. Make sure you hire a certified, experienced contractor and that EPA radon mitigation standards are explained and followed.

Radon testing is often done when you purchase a home. Buyers often ask for the test to be done along with the general home inspection. This is quite common especially in WIsconsin where higher levels of radon is found in approximately 1 in 10 homes. Radon levels can also change in a home due to weather changes, home changes caused by remodeling and age, and even living patterns such as adding a bedroom to a lower level. Because the environment in and around your home can change, you should get a radon test done every few years as recommended by the EPA.

At advanced Home Inspections we offer a 48 hour continuous radon measurement with a graph display to measure each hour. We offer quick results and a $50 discount if you are doing it in conjunction with a home inspection.   

For more specific information on Radon including a map of radon zones in the United States, go to https://www.epa.gov/radon