Radon mitigation is the remediation of radon concentrations in the living areas of inhabitable buildings, or radon in water systems. Radon is an important contributing factor to environmental radon radiation. It can leak from man-made or natural sources and can accumulate in living areas of both houses and buildings.
Radon acts as a strong absorber. In fact, it absorbs more than 100 times its own weight in water or air, making it one of the most efficient “green” gases in existence. Radon gas is odorless and colorless, making it difficult to detect. It can migrate into the living spaces of the house in the soil, air, or water; thus, it is necessary to carry out radon mitigation to control and potentially eliminate radon in the living spaces of the house.
Radon has been shown to contribute to poor health, as well as to cause lung diseases such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Radon abatement and mitigation should be performed before new home construction begins, especially if the home is located in an area known to be high in radon or if the existing occupants of the home have documented evidence of high radon levels in their living spaces. Radon abatement should also be performed prior to demolishing an existing building or installing a new building. New home owners should be made aware of radon levels in their building so that they can make an informed decision about the best course of action for mitigation.
The first step to take when determining whether radon is a radon problem is to have a radon test performed. This can be done at your local Department of Health. The test will confirm whether or not radon is present in your home. If radon is found in your home, the first step for mitigation would be to repair the radon problem. Depending on the radon concentration, the radon mitigation system may need to be added to the new home, or it could be located in a place where the existing venting systems would not reach.
In general, radon abatement begins with the removal or sealing of existing radon-containing soil or concrete. It is very important to carefully plan the location of any vented areas to avoid having to excavate and remove the soil or concrete, which is one of the major causes of excavation accidents. Radon gas can seep into crawl spaces or under basement floors through the use of inadequate soil conditions or poor vented areas. Another method of radon migration is by penetrating the soil and moving from beneath the soil to above the foundation. Any movement of soil or concrete that occurs would increase the concentration level of radon, which could make lung cancer more likely in individuals who are exposed to high radon levels.
To find radon mitigation options, you should first determine if you have a radon problem in your home. This will help you determine if you need new home construction or retrofitting based on radon measurement. In your state, there are many non-profit organizations that can help homeowners understand their radon problem and help them find ways to solve it. The lung Association recommends obtaining an annual radon test and measuring the indoor air quality in your home, both inside and out. When you have found a problem, then you should find a qualified radon mitigation specialist to help you with finding solutions to your problems.
Although radon levels in the home can never be determined to be a cause for lung cancer, it is a known carcinogen. Therefore, it is recommended that you perform radon removal on a regular basis. For more information on radon mitigation and your radon testing requirements, contact your state health department.
The safe level of radon exposure has not been defined. However, it is generally accepted that a safe level of radon exposure is below 200 picocuries per liter. Radon abatement can significantly reduce your risk of lung cancer and other diseases. There are kits available that you can use to test your soil and house for radon, and then perform radon remediation to remove it from your home. In addition, you can buy a kit that will test for radon and provide you with a recommendation for your radon mitigation needs.