You can't see it, smell it, touch it or taste it, but there is radon in the soil — and it could be seeping into your home!
Radon poisoning kills 22,000 people every year, but there are steps you can take to protect your home and your family.
Radon is a naturally occurring gas, found in soil, that seeps out of the ground and into the air above. If there's a house sitting on top of that soil, it can penetrate the cracks and crevices of the foundation and enter your home.
“As a homeowner, you should know the radon level of the home before you even move in,” says Angie Hicks of Angie's List. “You can test it by hiring a professional or by doing it yourself by buying a kit online or at your local hardware store. They range in price from 15 to 25 dollars.”
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, if your radon level tests at 4 PCL or higher, you need to get that number down.
Look for a contractor who's certified by the state or the National Radon Proficiency Program. They should start with a thorough inspection and then recommend a system designed specifically for your home and the ground it sits on.
“In a house such as this, which is older, there's no drain tiles, there's no sump pit, so we know it's going to be packed dirt, rock, stone, clay; and it's going to require a higher pressure fan, instead of a higher volume fan, ” says Damon Miller, a Radon specialist.
“The fan is a key component of that system, and it's going to run all the time, so you want to know what the life expectancy and the warranty is on that fan,” adds Hicks.
Hicks says, expect to pay $800 to $1,500 for the system, and keep in mind that because the fan will be constantly running, you may see a slight increase in your utility bill, as well.
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