frequently asked questions

Buy/Sell Existing Home

Test for RadshTo ensure that the home you are planning to buy does not have elevated levels of radon, you should have the home tested. Since time is of the essence during the real estate transaction, short term tests can be completed in a matter of days. You can should hire a professional testing company to conduct the test. Be sure that the testing company you choose is certified as being proficient in your state.

Remember, elevated radon levels can be fixed and can almost always be reduced to below 4 pCi/L. If testing confirms radon levels in the home to be at or above 4 pCi/L, consider having the radon level reduced before you move in. Talk with your real estate professional or settlement attorney about how to put fixing the home into the purchase agreement.

Sellers should consider testing when deciding to sell. The fact that your home does not have elevated radon levels could be a selling point to prospective buyers. If radon levels are elevated, have your home fixed.

Home Inspections

Home inspectors are often hired by buyers or sellers to examine a home before a real estate transaction is finalized. A professional inspection can alert a seller to existing or potential problems such as radon, allowing the seller to address them so as not to discourage a potential buyer. Before a buyer purchases a property, he or she wants assurances that the property does not have structural or other problems that could lead to unanticipated expenses after purchase.

Basic home inspections cover all major mechanical and structural systems such as heating, electrical, plumbing, and roofing. If the home already has a radon mitigation system, have it checked for proper operation. Many home inspectors are qualified to inspect for environmental problems, including measuring radon levels. If your home inspector is certified to measure for radon, consider asking him to test the home, if not contact Radon Man KC at the time of inspection and we can set an Test and give you quick results. 

Health Effects of Radon: Basics

What health effects are associated with radon exposure?

The Surgeon General has warned that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. There are currently no conclusive data on whether children are at greater risk than adults from radon. No specific subtype of lung cancer is associated with radon exposure.

Only smoking causes more cases of lung cancer. If you smoke and you are exposed to elevated radon levels, your risk of lung cancer is especially high. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency provides radon risk comparison charts for people who smoke and those who have never smoked. Stop smoking and lower your radon level to reduce your lung cancer risk.

Radon gas decays into radioactive particles that can get trapped in your lungs when you breathe. As they break down further, these particles release small bursts of energy. This can damage lung tissue and lead to lung cancer over the course of your lifetime. Not everyone exposed to elevated levels of radon will develop lung cancer, and the amount of time between exposure and the onset of the disease may be many years.

Breathing radon does not cause any short-term health effects such as shortness of breath, coughing, headaches, or fever.

How do I treat radon?

Research by public and private agencies, years of extensive hands-on mitigation experience, and long-term follow-up studies on the durability of radon mitigation systems have formed a strong knowledge base of proven mitigation techniques for homes, schools, and commercial buildings. The techniques are straightforward and, for a typical single family residence, can be done in one day by a qualified contractor.

Radon reduction requires more than just sealing cracks in the foundation. In fact, caulking and sealing of foundation openings, on its own, has proven not to be a reliable or durable technique. However, sealing is done in conjunction with other mitigation steps.

Active soil depressurization (ASD) has proven to be a cost-effective and reliable technique for radon reduction, by collecting the radon from beneath the building before it can enter. The systems can be simple or complex, depending upon the design of the building. Operating costs of the fans are minor, due to their low power consumption (typically less than 90 watts per fan).

The system draws the radon-laden soil gas from beneath the foundation and exhausts it outside of the building, far enough away from windows and other openings that it will not reenter. The system typically consists of a plastic pipe connected to the soil through a hole in a slab floor, through a sump lid connection, or beneath a plastic sheet in a crawl space. Attached to the pipe is a quiet, continuously operating fan that discharges the radon outdoors.

The system design is a function of the construction of the home, rather than the radon concentrations in the home. A home with more than one foundation can present challenges to collecting the soil gas from under all portions of the building. However, trained mitigation contractors can sometimes connect multiple systems together so that only one fan system is required.

What is a radon mitigation system?

A radon mitigation system is any system or steps designed to reduce radon concentrations in the indoor air of a building.

The EPA recommends that you take action to reduce your home's indoor radon levels if your radon test result is 4 pCi/L or higher.