Should I order a Radon Test?
Yes, Radon testing is recommended for all houses in all areas of Western North Carolina regardless of foundation type. Homes on slabs and basements tend to have higher radon test results than crawl spaces but homes with all foundation types can test high for radon.
Per the EPA:
What does EPA recommend?
- If you are buying a home or selling your home, have it tested for radon.
- For a new home, ask if radon-resistant construction features were used and if the home has been tested.
- Fix the home if the radon level is 4 picocuries per liter, or pCi/L, or higher.
- Radon levels less than 4 pCi/L still pose a risk, and in many cases, may be reduced.
- Take steps to prevent device interference when conducting a radon test.
How Common are Homes with High Radon Levels in our area?
Most home buyers order a radon test with their home inspection and about 1 out of 6 homes that we see test high for radon (fail).
Is the repair reliable and is it expensive?
If the levels of radon are high during a real estate test typically the seller pays for mitigation (but not always). Radon reduction systems typically costs less than $2000 and is generally very effective in reducing radon levels.
How is radon tested?
Builder Buddy Inspectors conduct the radon tests using the RadStar RS300 or the RadonPro Continuous Monitor devices. These machines are placed in the lowest finished space in the home for 2-4 days — they take readings every hour and have a tamper sensor. The RadonPro also takes readings of humidity and temperature which helps indicate whether closed conditions were maintained during the test. One of the many advantages of the continuous monitors is that they produce 48-96 readings instead of just one with the charcoal/cartridge tests. The additional information is used to produce graphs that show spike or tampering events. Results are back within 3 business days.
How long can it take to effect the levels of radon in the home?
The radon levels in a home can plummet within minutes if a door or window is left open which is why it is important to maintain closed conditions during a test. After conditions are closed it can take hours or a couple of days for the radon levels to trend back to higher levels. Radon has a half life of 3.8 days before it deteriorates and emits alpha particles which is why even new homes can test high for radon.