Testing your home for radon levels is an important step in ensuring the safety of your indoor environment. Radon is a colorless and odorless gas that can seep into buildings from the ground and can pose a health risk when present in high concentrations. Keep reading to learn about testing your home for radon levels.
Purchase a Radon Test kit:
Radon test kits are widely available and can be found in hardware stores, home improvement centers, or online. There are two main types of radon test kits: short-term tests and long-term tests.
- Short-term test kits: These kits typically require you to keep the test device exposed to the air in your home for a few days to a week. After the designated period, you seal the device and send it to a laboratory for analysis.
- Long-term test kits: These kits are designed to be exposed to the air in your home for a longer period, usually over 90 days or more. Similar to short-term kits, you seal the device and send it to a laboratory for analysis at the end of the test period.
Choose a Suitable Location
Place the test kit in the lowest level of your home that you frequently occupy, such as the basement or main living area. Make sure to follow the instructions provided with the test kit regarding proper placement and any specific conditions to maintain during testing.
Keep Conditions Stable
During the test period, it is important to maintain normal living conditions in your home. Keep all doors and windows closed as much as possible, except for regular entry and exit. You should also avoid using fans or other ventilation systems that could alter airflow patterns.
Complete the Test Period
Allow the test kit to remain undisturbed for the designated time period specified by the kit instructions. Make sure to record the start and end dates of the test.
Send the Kit for Analysis
Once the test period is over, carefully reseal the test kit following the provided instructions. Typically, you'll need to send the kit to a laboratory for analysis. The laboratory will provide you with the results, which will indicate the radon levels in your home.
Interpret the Results
Radon levels are typically measured in picocuries per liter (pCi/L). The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends taking action if the test results show the radon levels are between 2 pCi/L and 4 pCi/L. If your results are normal, it is still advisable to retest periodically as radon levels can fluctuate over time.
If the radon levels in your home are found to be above the recommended threshold, you should consider taking steps to reduce radon concentrations. Contacting a professional radon mitigation contractor would be a good next step to discuss mitigation options and ensure your home's safety.
Reach out to a professional for more information about radon tests.