Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer, after smoking. This odorless, colorless gas that is created by the natural breakdown of uranium in the soil can seep into homes through crawl spaces, sump pits, and cracks in foundations; long-term exposure to it is estimated to kill over 20,000 people a year. It is up to each homeowner to determine if their house has dangerous levels of radon that could silently be hurting those living inside the home. Here are 5 ways to reduce your family’s exposure to radon:
1. Test your home for radon. Testing, which is easy and inexpensive, can be done by a professional radon mitigation company or by a homeowner using a home testing kit. Long-term testing (over 90 days) will offer more accurate results, but short-term tests are also typically satisfactory. Regular testing should be performed at least once every two years.
2. If radon levels are unacceptably high, have your home mitigated for radon by a professional. This can usually be done in less than one day. The cost will be similar to other home maintenance projects, and will depend on the size and style of the home. Always test for radon again after incorporating a mitigation system to make sure the problem has been resolved.
3. Don’t smoke in your home, and don’t let others smoke either. Smoking significantly increases the risk of lung cancer caused by radon.
4. As a temporary strategy to reduce radon levels, open windows and use fans to circulate air throughout the house. Seal cracks in floors and walls, especially in the basement, with caulk or another appropriate material.
5. If you’re building a new home, have radon-resistant construction techniques incorporated into the build process; it’s cheaper and easier than adding a mitigation system later on.
For more information, please contact:
Illinois Valley Radon Mitigation, LLC
717 Bellevue Avenue
Ottawa, IL 61350