What is Radon and why should I test for it? Radon is a cancer-causing radioactive gas. You cannot see, smell or taste radon, but it may be a problem in a home.
The Surgeon General has warned that indoor radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States today after smoking. It is a common misconception that certain areas of the United States are not at risk for radon. In fact radon can be found in high levels in every state in the country; it doesn’t discriminate between new or old homes, brick or frame, basement or no basement.
Testing is the only way to know your home’s radon levels. There are no immediate symptoms that will alert you to the presence of radon. The U.S. EPA, the Surgeon General and the American Lung Association recommend having your home tested.
Testing can be done by the home owner with a one-time use kit that is mailed to a lab for testing. In most cases however, including real estate transactions, homeowners and prospective homeowners prefer testing by a qualified professional.
The EPA recommends mitigation for your home if the test result are 4 pCi/L or higher. Radon mitigation systems can cost between $550 and $2,500 depending on the size of the house and type of construction.