Radon, a naturally occurring, radioactive gas that is invisible, odorless and tasteless, has become the second-leading cause of lung cancer, second only to cigarette smoke. Huntsville Alabama radon testing is really the only way to know if you are at risk of radon build up. Did you know that radon in the home is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths every year? And about 2,900 of these deaths occur among people who have never even smoked.
Radon is produced by the decay of naturally occurring uranium in soil and water, and a form of ionizing radiation and a proven carcinogen. Most soils contain uranium that, over time, decays to produce radium and polonium. Eventually, polonium is released with the radon, which creates a high toxicity level in the air and water that it infuses.
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Radon can get into any type of building such as your home, office, schools, commercial buildings, etc. and can result in a high indoor radon level. That being said, you and your family are most likely to get the greatest exposure to radon in your own home where you spend most of your time. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Surgeon General recommend testing Huntsville Alabama homes for radon below the third floor as well as testing in schools.
The EPA, Department of Housing and Urban Development and the American Lung Association held a collaborative call on January 25, 2012 to build awareness around the simple and affordable steps Americans can take to protect their homes from radon and to highlight steps the federal government is taking to address radon in the schools and housing it controls and/or influences.
What are the Units of Radon?
Pico-Curies per liter (pCi/L) which is a unit that measures levels of radon/radioactive gas. It is recommended that you fix your home if the radon level is 4 pico-Curies per liter (pCi/L) or higher. Radon levels less than 4 pCi/L still pose a risk.
How Radon Can Get into Your Huntsville Alabama Home?
Radon, a radioactive gas, typically moves up through the ground to the air above and into your home through cracks and other holes in the foundation. Any home may have a radon problem as your home traps radon gas inside, where it can easily build up. Some of the ways radon can get into your Huntsville Alabama home include:
- Cracks in solid floors
- Cracks in walls
- Construction joints
- Gaps around service pipes
- Gaps in suspended floors
- The water supply
- Cavities inside walls
Radon reduction systems work and can reduce radon levels in your home by up to 99 percent. Most homes can be fixed for about the same cost as other common home repairs. Your costs may vary depending on the size and design of your home and which radon reduction methods are needed.
The EPA recommends that you have a qualified Huntsville Alabama radon mitigation contractor fix your home because lowering high radon levels requires specific technical knowledge and special skills. Without the proper equipment or technical knowledge, you could actually increase your radon level or create other potential hazards and additional costs.