Radon is a cancer-causing radioactive gas that humans are unable to see, smell, or taste. Experts estimate that Radon causes thousands of deaths each year. In fact, the Surgeon General warned that Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the US. Accordingly, it’s vital for the safety of you and your family to have your home receive a radon inspection.
How does radon get into your home?
Radon is a radioactive gas that comes from the natural decay of uranium found in nearly all soils. It typically moves up through the ground to the air above. Then, this gas will make it’s way into your home through cracks and other holes in the foundation. Your home traps radon inside, where it can build up. Any home may have a radon problem. This means new and old homes, well- sealed and drafty homes, and homes with or without basements.
Radon from soil gas is the main cause of radon problems. Sometimes radon enters the home through well water (see page 8). In a small number of homes, the building materials can give off radon, too. However, building materials rarely cause radon problems by themselves. Experts estimate that nearly 1 out of every 15 homes in the U.S. has high radon levels. Elevated levels of radon gas have been found in homes in your state. Contact your state radon office (https://www.epa.gov/radon/findinformation-about-local-radon-zones-and-state-contact-information) for general information about radon in your area and about radon testing.
While radon may be more common in some areas, it can manifest in any home. The only way to ensure your home is radon-free is to test for it. This is something that requires proper testing equipment handled by skilled pros. Radon can also be a problem in schools and workplaces. Ask your state radon office (www.epa.gov/radon/whereyoulive.html) about radon problems in schools, daycare and childcare facilities, and workplaces in your area (also visit https://www.epa.gov/radon).