What is Radon?
Radon is an odorless, colorless, and tasteless gas that comes from the breakdown of uranium. Uranium is one of the most common radioactive elements on earth and is found almost everywhere, which means Radon can be found practically everywhere. Unfortunately, for those in Pittsburgh, there is more Radon around than other places in the country.
Where Does Radon Come From?
Radon is all around us. However, there is very little Radon in the air we breathe outside. The problem arises when Radon is trapped in a confined space, making the basement of a home the prime spot for Radon to gather. Radon gas seeps into the basement of your home, from the soil, through cracks in your home's foundation, or gaps in the walls and floors. Radon gas then travels from your basement throughout the rest of your home, affecting you and your family. Radon affects many homes in Pittsburgh due to the large amount of homes that have basements; a danger zone for radon.
How is Radon Measured?
Radon is measured in picocuries per litre, pCi/L, or the amount of radon particles in air. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) recommends a level below 4 pCi/L. Even though this is the EPA recommended level, this amount of Radon, over a long period of time, can still have harmful effects on you and your family. Radon can not be completely removed from the air, or your home, but it can certainly be removed to a safer level.
Is Radon Dangerous?
Radon is the second leading cause of lungs cancer, after cigarettes. A radon level of 4 pCi/L, the EPA recommended action level of Radon, is equivalent to smoking 10 cigarettes a day. So for non-smokers that is a large impact, but for those who smoke, that is additional damage being done to your lungs.
That is the number of lung cancer related deaths caused by Radon every year in the United States. That is more than carbon monoxide, home fires, and drunk driving combined! Almost everyone has carbon monoxide detectors, and smoke alarms in their home. Why would you not test for Radon, a gas that is even more prevalent and dangerous than these?
Radon cannot be detected by human senses. It is odorless, colorless, and tasteless. The only way to test for Radon gas in your home is through Radon testing. Your family could be being harmed by the dangers of Radon gas and you may not even know it.
The composition of the ground underneath your home is constantly changing, this means that even if you have your home tested for Radon once, it may change after only a few short months. Home Radon Pros suggests that you have your home tested for Radon once every two years.
So is Radon dangerous? Absolutely. Radon gas is considered a class A carcinogen by the surgeon general. This means that it is known, without a doubt, that it causes cancer in humans. Just because you cannot see Radon, or if you may not feel that your family is being affected by radon, does not mean that it is not causing damage to the health of those living in your home. The amount of damage being done is dependent on the level of Radon in your home. The only way to know your home's level, is to have your home tested for Radon.
Is Your Home Being Impacted by Radon?
Uranium is constantly being decayed, which results in the creation of Radon gas, so yes, your home is constantly being affected by Radon gas. Not all homes will be in danger, but the EPA states that 1 out of 15 homes in the US have radon levels above the recommended action level of 4 pCi/L. In Pittsburgh, PA, the danger is even higher with 4 out of 10 homes being at or above the Radon recommended action level.
Most homes in the Pittsburgh area, have basements, which makes them highly susceptible to Radon gas being trapped. However, even if you do not have a basement, your home could still be in danger. The only way to know for sure if your home has a high level of Radon, is to have your home tested.
What Can You Do To Stay Safe From Radon?
Have Radon testing conducted in your home. Lucky for you, Home Radon Pros services all Pittsburgh homes for Radon testing.
If you have already had your home tested for Radon, then the next step is to have a Radon mitigation system installed. Home Radon Pros installs Radon mitigation systems to any home in the Pittsburgh area.