Am I required to test for radon?
No, you are not required to test your home for radon. However, as high radon levels can increase your chance for lung cancer, testing and appropriate action, if necessary, is a good idea. Thus, the EPA recommends that every real estate transaction of a home in the United States includes a Radon test.
How do I find out what the radon level is in my house?
Many factors such as season, weather, distance from a source and indoor activity influence radon levels. This unfortunately means that you cannot accurately estimate your radon levels from that of neighboring houses. The only way to know how much radon is in your home is to measure it.
What are the different tests for radon?
There are many different ways to measure radon and each method has different advantages and disadvantages. These methods can be lumped into two different categories: Short and long term testing.
Short-term testing is the quickest way to test your home. Short-term tests remain in your home for two days to 90 days, depending on the device. “Charcoal canisters,” “alpha track,” “electret ion chamber,” “continuous monitors,” and “charcoal liquid scintillation” detectors are most commonly used for short-term testing. Because radon levels tend to vary from day to day and season to season, a short-term test is less likely than a long-term test to tell you your year-round average radon level.
Long-term testing will give you a reading that is representative of you your home’s year-round average radon level. Long-term tests remain in your home for more than 90 days. “Alpha track” and “electret” detectors are commonly used for this type of testing.