RadonLeaders.org
Skip top navigation

Homeowners

Does Your Home or Building Need Radon Testing?

"Radon" sounds like a secret supervillain, and you could say that's essentially what it is. An invisible, odorless gas, radon concentrates in homes and buildings, exposing those who breathe it in to the second-top cause of lung cancer in the U.S. The good news is radon testing is simple; high-radon homes can be mitigated or fixed – and free or reduced-cost testing is offered in many areas.

Learn more about radon, mitigation, and testing for peace of mind.

Radon is an unseen danger

Even though this is the last day of January, it is still important to note that it is National Radon Awareness month.

Radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, only behind tobacco smoke. It is responsible for a reported 21,000 deaths per year in the United States.

Radon is a radioactive gas that forms when naturally-occurring uranium in granite bedrock decays into radium. This radium then decays to radon, a colorless, odorless gas. Radon is not harmful outside, but it can build up to damaging levels inside a house.

All of North Georgia, especially the upper third of the state, is considered to be at a moderate to high radon risk.

In Columbia and Richmond counties, an average of 4 percent of the test kits come back with elevated levels of radon.

Radon enters homes through cracks and crevices in your foundation. The air pressure inside your home acts as a vacuum, helping to pull radon up from the soil beneath.

Radon: Unmasking the Invisible Killer

Radon gas is invisible and odorless. But it reveals itself in a deadly footprint it can leave behind -- lung cancer. In fact, exposure to radon gas is the second leading cause of lung cancer, and one in 15 homes in America is at risk from elevated levels of radon. January is National Radon Action Month and the perfect time to take action to protect you and your loved ones from this invisible killer.

Understanding Radon
Radon is a naturally occurring invisible, odorless and tasteless gas. It occurs when uranium in the soil and rock underground breaks down to form radon. As radon decays, it releases radioactive byproducts that are inhaled and can cause lung cancer. Radon enters a home through cracks in the walls, basement floors, foundations and other openings, and can build up to dangerous concentrations.

New radon hot spots appearing in Oregon

Watch Video here: http://www.kgw.com/news/local/radon-hot-spots-popping-up-in-oregon/20033196

PORTLAND, Ore. -- New research shows radon gas is popping up in some surprising places.

You can't see it, taste it or smell it, but radon exists in roughly one out of every four Portland-area homes.

And it can be deadly.

At only 49 years old, Darcy White was diagnosed with lung cancer, a year after her mother died from it.

"I had a 38 percent chance of survival after five years," White explained. "And I'll be at seven years this April 7th."

After chemotherapy and surgery to remove part of her lung, White is now cancer free and on a mission to warn people about radon.

It's what her doctor believes caused her cancer.

"He said 'I believe it was radon particularly because where you were raised,'" she said.

National Radon Action Month: Spreading awareness

You can't see it, smell it, or taste it in your home but there may be dangerous levels or radon lurking in your house.

About twenty-one thousand Americans die each year from lung cancer caused from radon. The month of January is National Radon Action month and the EPA and U.S. Surgeon General are encouraging everyone to test their homes, businesses, and schools.

"I see a lot of people with cancer. Probably once every two weeks I'm in somebody's home that has had cancer and don't have an explanation for it, in particular lung cancer and have come to find out that their radons high," said Kevin Siers, owner of KSA Radon Services.

Other prevention techniques the EPA is promoting this month are spreading the word and attending a radon awareness event in our area.

Learn more about how you can raise awareness!

Most New Jerseyans ignore radon risk, inspecting only when selling a house

Radon is one of the scariest things that can turn up in a house. It's the second most common cause of lung cancer, after smoking, and kills an estimated 500 New Jerseyans a year, experts say.

Despite the risk, most people think about radon only when it's time to buy or sell a home, when buyers request that the house be tested for the colorless, odorless gas. But experts say homeowners should check for it even if they're not planning to move.

The remediation system travels out the roof in this Oradell home. The gas is the result of the natural breakdown of radioactive material in the ground and can be hazardous when trapped inside a house.

A remediation system traveling up through the basement floor.
"We don't want people to just wait till they're selling their home to fix radon problems," says Kevin Stewart, director of environmental health of the American Lung Association in New Jersey.

How to test a home

Missouri Radon Levels Higher Than Previously Thought

It's silent, invisible, and a major cause of cancer. In addition, a surprising number of houses in the St. Louis area have too much of it, according to recent test figures.

Many Missouri home owners don't know about radon, or it’s risk, until it's too late. And state politicians aren't doing much to fix the problem.

“Seems like someone should have brought it up before. I don't want to end up dying from lung cancer,” said Wentzville homeowner Brian Hunsicker.

There's something in Brian and Joanne Hunsicker's home steadily stealing years from their lives. It’s cancer- caused by an odorless, radioactive gas called radon. It seeps out of the soil and into many homes across Missouri and the nation.

“Radon is responsible for about 21,000 deaths each year,” said Dr. Bill Field, an internationally-acclaimed Radon expert.

In fact, Field says, radon is the number two cause of lung cancer in the U.S...a surprise for many of its victims.

Radon Testing Now Mandatory For Montgomery County Home Sales

Montgomery County is the first local government in the U.S. to mandate testing for radon gas before a home can be sold. The Environmental Protection Agency says homes in the county are at particular risk for having dangerous levels of the gas.

Most single-family homes would have to be tested for radon before they are sold under a measure the county council gave unanimous approval. Maryland state law already encourages home sellers to test for it and mandates that if radon is detected, they tell the potential buyer. But testing isn't required by the state, and county councilman Craig Rice feels home buyers should know what they are getting.

"We are just asking people to test. Just to make sure that they know what may be lurking in their homes unknown that might be a silent, deadly killer," Rice says.

Radon gas is invisible and radioactive. It comes from the breakdown of uranium in rocks and soil. Humans exposed to it have greater rates of cancer and other diseases.

Montgomery Co. Considers Controversial Bill Requiring Home Sellers to Test for Radon

In Maryland, home sellers who know that their homes have elevated radon levels are required to disclose that information to prospective buyers. However, at present, home sellers have no duty to measure the radon levels in their homes.

That could change in Montgomery County if the County Council approves a controversial bill that would mandate radon testing.

Bill 31-15, sponsored by Council members Craig Rice (D-Upcounty) and Sidney Katz (D-Gaithersburg-Rockville), would require home sellers to test their homes for radon and provide the results to prospective home buyers before entering a sales contract. If the bill is enacted, Montgomery County would become the only jurisdiction in the country to mandate radon testing.

Read more here.

High radon levels in Iowa homes 'surprise' University of Iowa researchers

IOWA CITY, Iowa — You can't see it, you can't smell it, but it causes cancer. It's radon, and a recent study by the University of Iowa suggests it can be found at higher than recommended levels in many Iowa homes.

Radon is a naturally-occurring radioactive gas caused by the uranium in the Earth's crust. It can be found in concentrated levels, often in the lower levels of homes. According to state officials, it's the second leading cause of lung cancer in the nation.

The UI study was conducted in 2013 and published last month. Researchers tested more than 350 homes in the small northwest Iowa town of Akron.

Learn more here.