Uranium is the “father” factor in Radon, a radioactive element contained in many houses. Radon gas is produced by its natural decay, radium and its “progeny,” a daughter product. Radon gas is colorless or odorless and requires the detection of specialized equipment and laboratory tests.You may want to check out Measuring radon in your home for more.
The pores and cracks that form a home and crawl spaces with poor ventilation are two common sources of radon entry. Homes situated above gravel and other porous subsoils are more susceptible to radon than fewer porous subsoils such as clay. Radon moves quickly through more fragile soils to hit foundations, and any gaps or holes within that base allow it to enter the home.
Picocuries (pCi) is how calculation of radon is performed. 1.3 pCi / L (picocuria per liter of air) is a typical radon standard for indoor space and is not a threat. If amounts of radon reach 4.0 pCi / L, the EPA requires that action be taken to reduce the rates.
Radon in the home It is projected that at present 1 in 15 households nationally meets the concentration of 4.0 pCi / L which is deemed to be the “compliance point” under EPA requirements. Areas across the US are regularly performing at above-average levels. There are places in New York alone where almost 50 per cent of homes surpass the 4.0 pCi / L rate.
The National Academy of Sciences reports that Radon, a known carcinogen, is responsible for more than 20,000 cases of lung cancer every year. Harm to tissues and cells in the human body is induced by radon-emitting alpha-radiation. The Fda, and the United States Surgeon General recommends that Radon concentration levels be tested at every home.
When high radiation concentrations are detected in a home, radiation mitigation techniques and equipment are available to lower the levels. For starters, PVC plumbing can be used as a way of intercepting radon gas under the cement basement. You can also have a ventilator or air pump installed to direct the radon gas flow outside.
These pipes and fans are something to look for when also buying a home. These could be signs of an already in place radon mitigation system that the seller failed to disclose. This isn’t particularly uncommon for motivated sellers.