Do I need to test my home for Radon? If so, how do I go about testing?

Home Energy December 01, 2011 Print Friendly and PDF

Radon gas in homes can increase the risk for lung cancer. Radon levels can vary greatly from one house to the next - even in the same community, so it is a good idea for everyone to test their homes for radon. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has rated every county in the U.S. by radon risk zone. The map is available online. Keep in mind that even in low risk areas, some homes may still have high levels of radon. The only sure way to know is to test. Radon test kits are available through many Extension offices, the National Safety Council, or at hardware and home improvement stores. The quickest way to test is to use a short-term test. If test results show elevated levels of radon, follow-up with a second short-term test or a long-term test. If the follow-up test shows elevated levels of radon, measures need to be taken to reduce the radon level. In all parts of the country, a long-term (30-90 days) test provides a better picture of exposure since radon levels in a building can vary from day to day. Contact your local Extension office or state health or environmental agencies for specific recommendations on radon reduction measures. Additional information on radon testing and a list of certified radon measurement and mitigation professionals can be found through state health or environmental agencies, or from the NEHA National Radon Proficiency Program

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