Category Archives: About Radon

what is radon? how was it discovered? how it effects your health? … and more

Basement Remodeling 101

We all have a favorite room in our home. For some it’s a warm cozy kitchen. For others it’s a sumptuous living room or a comfortable bedroom. When is the favorite room ever the basement? You can transform a boring basement into a getaway room and create a new favorite place. Upgrade that lost space and get more out of your home’s square footage.

Did you know that the cost of remodeling your basement is significantly cheaper than adding on an extra room? The savings are even higher if you are able to start with a dry basement. With the average cost of a basement remodel at about $20 per square foot, basement transformations are a real space solution for some. There are a few things to consider before starting a basement remodel. If you are unsure about where to get started, it’s wise to consult a local general contractor. Estimates are usually free.

The Official Basics

Most city and county regulations require basements to have 7-foot ceilings. Without the right ceiling height, you might have a difficult time getting a building permit. If your ceilings come close to that height, check with a local contractor. They will be able to offer you some ceiling solutions that can help you find more head space. Don’t be too concerned about overhead pipes and wiring. Pipes and wires can be moved or drop ceilings can be hung. It’s also great to have a qualified contractor who can educate you on building codes for your getaway room. He’ll be familiar with what’s important to local inspectors.

Damp or Dry?

The next concern should be basement dampness. Some older homes have significant dampness and even occasional flooding. Of course, it would not be wise to remodel your basement without addressing these serious issues first. Flooding occurs mainly because of runoff problems. You’ll have to reroute drainage away from your basement. You may also have to make gutter repairs to keep water away from your home. Any foundation cracks will have to be addressed as well. Cracks in your foundation will allow rainwater to accumulate in your basement. Repairing and installing drains are important too. Also have your contractor check for radon before building. Radon is a cancer-causing, radioactive gas that can be found in settled water like underground pipes. It would be a good idea to check for radon before beginning a basement remodel.

Ventilation in Your Getaway Room

Ventilation is a must in your newly remodeled basement. You’ll need cold air returns and heating. Your contractor will be able to run ducts, set registers and adjust any outflow piping. Or you can purchase a basement ventilation system. Check with your contractor about which is right for your situation.

Your ads will be inserted here by

Easy Plugin for AdSense.

Please go to the plugin admin page to
Paste your ad code OR
Suppress this ad slot.

From Dark to Light

Your getaway space will need some light! With windows out of the question in many basements, recessed lighting is a great way to fake natural light in your new room. Check local stores for lighting fixtures that best suit your overall decorating scheme.

Fabulous Flooring

To fight a damp feeling in your new room, you may consider installing heated flooring. What a cozy way to keep your feet warm! However, there are tons of great flooring choices available from hardwood to tile. Even carpet is a great accent and brings a level of coziness to your new room.

Which Room?

You can change that dead space into a busy family room or create a home theater. Underground game rooms and party rooms are also popular choices! You should also consider a workout room, an extra guest room or just your very own artist’s retreat. Whatever you choose, your getaway room will be perfect with a little help from your local contractor.

Mimi Bullock is a copywriter for Yodle Local, a business directory and online advertising company. Find more home remodeling tips and info at the Granite Transformation Blog

Author: Mimi Bullock
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
Eco Friendly

Strategies to Sell Your House Yourself – Pay Close Attention to Experts & Ignore Them at Your Peril!

When you are trying to sell your house yourself, you may have dispensed the services of an agent, but you should heed the advice given by other professionals. Prior to putting your home on the market, you will need the services of a professional inspector. Get your inspector to thoroughly examine your home and pick up valuable tips that could mean the difference between success and failure.

One of the major things to be aware of when selling your house yourself is the property’s electrical wiring. The last thing you want is for all your sale profits to go towards the cost of a lawyer because faulty wiring caused serious damage to your home.

All experts will mention the radon test to you. If your home has high levels of radon, this can be easily fixed. Plus this is a huge plus point for potential buyers. For the most accurate results, you should have a thorough radon test and then do a retest afterward. Mention this to buyers when they visit.


(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

Do you desperately need to know How To Sell Your House Yourself?

To learn exactly what others are doing in your situation then Click Here and grab your Free Report.

Author: Sam Renstaff
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
Duty tariff

How radon was discovered

Radon was discovered in 1900 by a German chemist Friedrich E. Dorn. He called it radium emanation. What he discovered was radon-222, while a scarcer isotope, radon-220, was actually observed first, in 1899, by the British scientist, R.B. Owens, and the New Zealand scientist, Ernest Rutherford. In 1984 a nuclear plant worker in Pennsylvania discovered radioactivity on his clothing while exiting his place of work through a radiation detector. The source of the radiation was determined to be radon decay products on his clothing originating from his home. It wasn’t until then that the medical community became aware of the possible extent of radon related problems.

Radon – an introduction

Radon - 222
Radon - 222

Rn is the chemical symbol for radon. It is a radioactive gas that  occurs naturally and can be found in soils, rock, and water throughout the world. It has numerous different isotopes, but radon-220, and -222 are the most common. Radon is a gas that is created in the soils where uranium and radium are found. Since these elements can be found everywhere in the world any building has the potential for elevated levels of radon. The more uranium found in the soil, the higher the potential for elevated radon levels within that building.

Because radon is an inert (or noble) gas, meaning that it does not react or combine chemically with other substances except under certain special conditions, it can move up through the soil into the atmosphere, where it is easily diluted and presents little concern. However, when radon enters a building, it can build up and become a health concern

You cannot see or smell radon, and there is no way that your body can sense the presence of radon; however, it can have a detrimental effect on the inhabitants by increasing their likelihood of developing lung cancer.

How is radon created?

radioactive decay of uranium to radon
radioactive decay of uranium to radon

The presence of Radon in the atmosphere or water is not due to any man made process or other source of pollution, but is mainly derived from uranium deposits in the soil. Uranium (Uranium-238) decays into a stable form of Lead through a series of steps which include the break down of uranium into radium (Radium-226) , which in turn decays into radon gas (Radon-222). Radium-226 and Radon-222 are present in almost all rock, soil and water.

How radon gets into your home!!!

how radon enters a home
how radon enters a home

Since radium 226 can be found in low concentrations in almost all rock and soil, it is not a question of “if”, but “how much” radon you really have. Radon is generated in rock and soil and it escapes into the atmosphere through cracks and spaces between the rocks and soil. This results in an average outdoor radon concentration of about 0.4 pCi/L (picocuries per liter of air). At these concentrations there is no real danger. However, if radon is allowed to seep into homes and buildings through cracks and holes in the foundations and walls, the concentration can build up to much higher levels, at which point research suggests there is a reason for concern.

The average indoor radon concentration is about 1.3 pCi/l. Radon concentrations in a home can very depending on several factors including; house design, soil conditions, local geology, and the weather, such as high or low atmospheric pressures, and warm or cold climate. For example, indoor radon levels increase substantially during the winter months. As indoor temperatures increase relative to the outside temperatures, a thermal effect occurs. The rising warm air within a building is displaced by cold denser outside air, some of which seeps in through the foundation cracks, vents, and holes from the underlying soils.

Furthermore, exhaust fans inside the house can create a lower (negative) pressure inside the home relative to the surrounding soil and air, and radon can actually be drawn into the building.