Radon Measurement Common Questions
How do I find out if I have Radon in my home?
The only way to determine radon levels in your home is to conduct a radon measurement test.
Can I conduct my own test?
Yes, there are two different tests that you can conduct yourself.
- Short-Term Radon Test. A short-term test kit is the quickest way to conduct a test. These kits can stay in your home from two to 90 days, depending on the device type. Short-term testing requires your home to be under “closed-house conditions”, meaning all doors and windows must be closed during testing, other than normal comings and goings from the home. However, a short-term test is less likely than a long-term test to tell you what your year-long average radon level is, as radon levels tend to vary from day to day and season to season.
- Long-Term Radon Test. A long-term test kit remains in your home for a minimum of 91 days, although testing can continue for a year. Long-term testing provides a more accurate reading of the radon levels within your home, especially if the home is tested up to a year. Results from a long-term test are more likely to reflect the variances in the radon level, as levels fluctuate from day to day, season to season, as well as the average “open-house conditions” that consists of the normal comings and goings from the home.
Where can I buy a short-term or long-term test?
EcoTech sells both the short-term and long-term tests kits, please visit our EcoTech Store for purchasing information. Radon test kits can also be purchased at most hardware stores and cost an average of $15-$35.
What if I’m in a real estate transaction?
If you are purchasing a home, most buyers and their agents, test the new home as part of the inspection period. A Certified Radon Measurement Professional should be hired to conduct the radon test. The third party tester will perform a two day test, the test will be placed in the lowest portion of the home (i.e. crawlspace or basement) and will be required to be under “closed-house conditions”.
Radon Measurement Results
What is measured to determine if there is radon within the home?
To determine the amount of radon within the air, it is measured in “picocuries per liter of air” or pCi/L. The gas itself is not measured directly, it is actually the radioactivity the radon produces that is measured.
What do the radon test results mean?
- If the measurement reading reflects a 4.0 or lower pCi/L, you and your agent will receive a detailed report and no mitigation will be needed. Although, the EPA does recommend that you test, using a short-term or long-term test, every two years.
- If the measurement reading reflects a 4.0 or higher pCi/L, you and your agent will receive a detailed report and a proposal for a radon mitigation system to lower the radon levels in the home.
I’m in a real estate transaction and I’ve scheduled my sewer scope for the same time as the radon test, is that okay?
EcoTech highly recommends that you DO NOT schedule the sewer scope and radon measurement at the same time. If the two inspections are scheduled together, a 12 hour delay should be placed on the measurement device after the scope is completed. The sewer scope can be considered a disruption to the “closed house conditions” that are required during the radon test. Open sewer pipes, during a scope, can allow radon gases into a home. Thus, if a sewer scope is performed during a radon test, the exposed sewer can cause a spike in the test, reflecting in a false reading.