• Saratoga Springs Real Estate Agent

Radon – A Silent Killer

Jan 13th, 2011 | By | Category: Featured Articles

Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers, causing 21,000 deaths annually and is a growing threat, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Radon is an invisible, radioactive gas that results from the breakdown of uranium and radium in the soil and rock beneath homes. Levels vary from day to day. Any building can have radon, but almost one of every fifteen homes has elevated radon levels, according to the EPA. Overexposure does not cause symptoms and once you’ve been exposed, there is no treatment. That’s why getting your home tested every two years is recommended.

Radon is measured in picocuries per liter (pCi/L).  1.3 pCi/L is considered the national average indoor level. Because there is no known safe level of exposure to radon, EPA also recommends that Americans consider remediation of their home for radon levels between 2 pCi/L and 4 pCi/L.

If test results show higher than 4 pCi/L, remediation is recommended which normally consists of a Radon-remediation system.  Radon-remediation systems will vary depending on a home’s structure, but a system that will cut the level to 2 pCi/L or lower usually costs about $1,200 for the average house. This is a project that should be left to a professional.  Many states require radon-abatement professionals to be licensed and the radon-mitigation systems to meet state requirements.

If you are concerned about the radon levels in your home, you can purchase a test kit at many home-improvement stores.  For more info on radon, and to find contact info for radon-abatement professionals visit: epa.gov/radon/states/newyork.html

As with anything else it is always a little easier to sleep at night when you know you are taking all necessary steps to protect yourself and your family from unseen dangers.

(Photo by oparvex used under CC 2.0)

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