Fixes for the hazards of radon

by Stickywire on Monday June 11, 2012

Radon is a real threat. Radon is a radioactive, colorless, odorless, tasteless ‘noble’ gas but there is nothing noble about its effects. Next to smoking, radon gas may be the second leading cause of lung cancer. Radon is emitted by uranium which is found naturally in most places in North America and in higher concentrations in some locations than others.

Radon gets into homes through basement floors and cracks in the foundation, sumps, pipes, windows. It can seep through porous concrete or tiny holes in walls and floors. It is found in unacceptable amounts in a considerable number of homes.

The concentration of radon varies from house to house and fluctuates depending on a number of factors including the time of year. Highest levels are found in the winter when homes are shut up more tightly and the gas accumulates. This is the best time to have premises checked for radon gas. The homeowner can use a kit to test for radon but it is difficult and probably best for a certified expert to do testing.

It may cost several thousands of dollars to remediate a problem that allows radon to enter a home and must be done by a contractor who is certified and experienced in radon migration. One way is to install a pipe through the basement floor with a fan that will pressurize the basement and draw the gas out of it – in a process called de-pressurization

The fix is inexpensive, however, when it is compared to the costs to the health of a family.

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