Radon has been all over the news as of late. While many people have heard about it, very few actually know what it is. Where does it come from? What makes it so dangerous? How can one detect it? Let’s start with the basics, shall we?
Radon is a highly toxic, odorless, colorless gas. It is a naturally occurring substance derived from the decay of uranium, normally found in earth and rock beneath your home. It has also been discovered in well water, and in certain building materials.
In recent times, Radon has been definitively linked with lung cancer. According to the EPA, Radon is a radioactive gas that has been identified as a leading cause of lung cancer, second only to cigarette smoking in the United States. The EPA estimates that Radon is responsible for over 20,000 deaths annually.
Testing for Radon in your home is relatively simple and inexpensive. A number of companies have developed detection systems, similar in many ways to traditional smoke detectors. Another option is to have your home tested by a certified Radon detection technician. The website for the EPA has extensive listings of qualified technicians throughout the United States.
If dangerous levels of Radon are detected in your home or business, immediate action must be taken. Radon levels can be reduced through a process called mitigation, which can include a number of different techniques. Soil suction is one such method. It works by suctioning radon from beneath your home, and venting it through pipes to the outside. Another method that is frequently used is called house pressurization. It works by using fans to create air pressure differences, and thus deters radon from entering your home.
As Radon is a naturally occurring substance, it would make sense to give your home a thorough inspection for possible entry points. Cracks or gaps in the foundation of your home, or drafty windows can be considered entry points and should be treated as such. As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Have your home tested for tested for Radon today.
Christopher King is an environmental consultant and a member of Greenpeace. When he is not trying to save the whales from the humans, he is trying to save the humans from themselves. In his spare time, Chris writes for purityplanet.com an excellent source of information about Radon detection [http://www.purityplanet.com/radon-detectors.aspx], Water purification [http://www.purityplanet.com/water-filters-and-purification.aspx], Ionization [http://www.purityplanet.com/ionizers.aspx] and more.