What’s Radon?

Radon is a dangerous gas that comes from the decaying of Uranium in the ground. It is naturally a gas and can be inhaled, eventually leading to lung cancer. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer behind smoking and ahead of second hand smoke. Radon is especially dangerous in residential housing because it can concentrate in basements and crawlspaces. The scariest part is that it is odorless, colorless and tasteless. The ONLY way to know if you have Radon is to test specifically for it.  Radon can also be in your well water which can lead to higher levels in the air.  This blog focuses on radon in the air, for radon in the water read my water blog...

Knox Home Inspections uses the BEST radon measuring devices on the market.  These machines will give you much more data than any other Home Inspectors out there and your results will be available much quicker than our competition.  

In New Hampshire we have a higher concentration of Radon than in other parts of the country, especially Carroll County.  For this reason I recommend an air test in every house that I inspect.  Radon can be in all the houses in your neighborhood or in just a few, the only way to know if it is in your home is to have it tested by a professional.  The results will tell you the Radon level and you can decide if you need to mitigate or not.

The EPA recommends action be taken if you have over 4.0 pCi/L. I have performed a lot of Radon tests in New Hampshire and  keep very detailed records. The average Radon level in a basement with NO mitigation system is 5.2 pCi/L.  So some are higher and some are lower. The average radon level with a system in place is 1.2 pCi/L. These systems work, and they can save lives.

In 2016 alone I came to FIVE separate homes with Radon mitigation systems that were turned OFF! If you have a system in place it needs to be ON at all times. The fan does not use a lot of electricity, about the same as a bathroom fan and it should also be as quiet as one. If it is louder than a small fan you should replace the fan unit. The fans are around $125 a piece.

Radon mitigation is not as expensive as some people fear it is. A basic, full system normally starts around $1000. Depending on the layout of the house they can be installed easily. Here’s one that runs out the side of the basement: 


The fan above is one of the systems I found that was OFF. Please make sure if you are buying a home that the system is ON before you even schedule a home inspection. I could not test this system that day because it would accomplish nothing. Instead the buyers Real Estate Agent had to contact the seller, get them to turn it on, and then I went back and did the test. This cost the home buyers valuable time during the closing process and was an unnecessary delay and added stress for everyone involved.

Knox Home Inspections is certified by the International Association of Certified Indoor Air Consultants for Advanced Radon Air Measurement. We guarantee an accurate Radon test for all of our customers for just $125. It is worth every penny to know that your home is free and clear of radon.

If you have any Radon Air questions feel free to contact us at anytime.