Understanding Radon and Your Test Results

My neighbor had a test done and the results were below the EPA Action Level. Do I need to test my home?

Yes, you should test your home for radon. Just because your neighbor's test was low doesn't mean your home will be the same. You cannot see, smell or taste radon. You don't know what you are breathing unless you test.

I just completed a Radon test and the levels are (>4, >10, >20 for example) I've been living in this house all my life. What are the chances that I am going to get sick?

Radon is the number one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers, according to EPA estimates. Overall, radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Radon is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths every year. About 2,900 of these deaths occur among people who have never smoked.

The risk of developing lung cancer due to radon exposure is 7.3 people in a 1,000 for never smokers. Put another way, a person who never smoked (never smoker) who is exposed to 1.3 pCi/L has a 2 in 1,000 chance of lung cancer; while a smoker has a 20 in 1,000 chance of dying from lung cancer. Smokers are at a much higher risk than never smokers, e.g., at 8 pCi/L the risk to smokers is six times the risk to never smokers.

Radon in air is ubiquitous. Radon is found in outdoor air and in the indoor air of buildings of all kinds. EPA recommends homes be fixed if the radon level is 4 pCi/L (pico Curies per Liter) or more. Because there is no known safe level of exposure to radon, EPA also recommends that Americans consider fixing their home for radon levels between 2 pCi/L and 4 pCi/L. The average radon concentration in the indoor air of America's homes is about 1.3 pCi/L. It is upon this level that EPA based its estimate of 20,000 radon-related lung cancers a year. It is for this simple reason that EPA recommends that Americans consider fixing their homes when the radon level is between 2 pCi/L and 4 pCi/L. The average concentration of radon in outdoor air is .4 pCi/L or 1/10th of EPA's 4 pCi/L action level.

My test result is above 4 pCi/L. Can you recommend a mitigator?

We suggest that you visit www.RadonAway.com or call them directly at 800-767-3703. RadonAway will provide you with names of several licensed and/or certified mitgators in your area.

You may also visit the National Radon Proficiency Program at www.aarst-nrpp.com. Choose the members list and then mitigators. Find the state you're looking for and a list of mitigators will be provided.

You may also check your local yellow pages.