Planning For Radon Mitigation in Your New Home

The prevalence of Radon Gas in the soils in areas around the United States is an issue of growing concern. Radon has been deemed the number 1 cause of lung cancer in non-smokers in a study done at the University of Iowa.

If your planned home is in an area of higher risk, you should plan early on to install a Radon Mitigation System. In many areas now, a test is required with each real-estate transaction regarding residential properties and this will probably expand to include most of the higher risk areas. In any event, your health is well worth the small investment to install such a system.

Installing the basics of the system in a Basement or Slab-On-Grade Foundation consists of inserting a perforated pipe below the slab in crushed rock and stubbing up a connector into the basement. Venting this pipe to the exterior (away from any windows in your house or your neighbors, preferably up through the roof), constitutes what is known as a Passive Radon Mitigation System. If , after your house is complete, a test determines that levels are still too high, you may have to convert to an Active Radon Mitigation System by installing a fan than runs continuously which creates low pressure under the slab and increases the rate of gas evacuation. So you will want to have the slab penetration in an area that is readily accessible and has electric available to power the fan.

Radon gas is found in varying levels in almost all regions of the country. Visit the EPA’s Radon Map Zone at the following link.

Radon Map Zone Areas in Pink pose the highest risk followed by Orange and Yellow. Click here to check the specific risk level in your county.

Many times the fan is located in the attic, particularly if your foundation is slab-on-grade or crawl space. Also remember that you will want to make sure that the vent through the roof does not allow water to fall down the pipe to the slab below, this would not be a good thing for several reasons.

Designing and installing the infrastructure for a passive system can be accomplished for about $150 to $300. this will save you 150-300% of the cost of retrofitting. An Active systems will add $ 250-$550 depending on the size of your home. Download Build Radon Out.  Your radon system is a simple task but it does require planning to complete the installation in your new home without incurring significantly higher costs.

Author: Randy Covington
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
Provided by: Guest blogger

Radon Mitigation – Fixing a Radon Problem the Right Way

What needs to be done?

If a home’s radon level is 4 picocuries per liter or more, the EPA recommends a radon mitigation system (sometimes called radon remediation) to be installed.

A common method utilized to reduce the radon level is “sub slab depressurization”.  In this case, a suction point or points are determined and a pipe is inserted through the concrete slab floor.  This pipe is connected to other PVC piping and a fan is positioned on the pipe outside the living area. The fan then draws the radon gas from beneath the home and vents it to the outside.  A radon mitigation system can cost between $900-$2500. 

Choosing a Mitigation Company

A qualified mitigation company is your best choice for installation of a radon mitigation system.

In many states, these companies or individuals are certified by a state regulatory agency such as the DEP (Department of Environmental Protection).  If this is not true in your state, then you should look for a qualified mitigator who is NEHA (National Environmental Health Association) certified.  When choosing a radon mitigation company, you should ask for their state or NEHA certification number, if they offer free estimates, and a warranty on the system.

Typically, the mitigation company will visit the home to determine the best configuration of the system and the size of the fan for the type of foundation the house is built on.  An estimate of cost for a system can then be determined.  After choosing the contractor, plan on 1-2 days for installation. 

As always, beware of the lowest bidder.  Check for references, job examples, and the amount of time the contractor has been in business.

Life After Radon Mitigation

It is recommended that a radon mitigation system be tested after installation. A test may be performed after the system has been operational for 24 hours or more.  A short-term test is usually used for the initial test. In some cases, the estimate given by the contractor may include the retest by a professional company or radon test kits.

A follow-up test is suggested every year to monitor the system’s continued effectiveness.

Arick Amspacker is a certified radon technician and home inspector. Over the years he has taught continuing education courses for Realtors and many first time home buyers seminars, as well as a Community College course on inspections and radon. His website http://www.homeradontest.com sells various types of inexpensive, easy to use radon testing devices, and http://www.radonreporter.com offers a resource for radon information.

Author: Arick Amspacker
Article Source: EzineArticles.com

Radon Health Dangers

Radon is a colorless, tasteless naturally occurring radioactive gas that comes from uranium deposits in the ground. Radon enters the home through the home’s foundation or well water. Although naturally occurring, the indoor levels of radon vary widely across the United States and from house to house. Studies show that any level of radon over 0.4 pCi/L increases the risk for lung cancer. People who have smoked are at an even higher risk. Some homes have extremely high levels of radon when a house next door may not have any. Because radon dissipates quickly concentrations of radon gas outdoors are negligible.

People who are exposed to high levels of radon over a prolonged period of time often develop lung cancer. Early symptoms of radon exposure are coughing, wheezing, heavy breathing, and infections like pneumonia and bronchitis. Symptoms of radon gas exposure are often not recognized until a serious condition has been diagnosed.

Testing is an important instrument used to determine radon gas levels. Using a reputable and experienced test facility is important. Look for a facility that has been approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA.) Also, taking at least two tests in different parts of the house gives a more accurate reading. One of the test sites should be the master bedroom since so many people spend the majority of their time at home sleeping. Doing the tests midsummer and midwinter will give you a good average of levels in your home. Also, don’t forget to send in a water sample if your water comes from a source other than a public water service.

If your test results come back with higher than normal levels of radon there is no reason to panic. It is easy to lower levels of radon gas with proper ventilation and water filtration. Setting up fans and circulating air will lower levels quickly. Certain parts of your house will be more prone to have higher levels. Basements are more likely to have higher level due to their proximity to the ground.

Do not use basements as living space unless correct ventilation is installed. Sealing any cracks or openings in the basement is especially important. If you have high levels of radon in your water a charcoal filtration system along with proper aeration will dispel any gas in the water. High priced radon mitigation companies will try and sell you all sort of gadgets but the average consumer can lower radon levels with a few common sense techniques.

Bryan Sims writes about various topics including health issues and product information for the online audience. Find information about the newest website at http://www.wallmountforlcdtv.net/ which helps people find super saver deals on Peerless TV mounts and more information about various types of wall mounts for televisions.

Author: Bryan Sims
Article Source: EzineArticles.com

How to Protect Your Family From Radon Gas Poisoning in Your Home

Radon gas poisoning kills many thousands of people every year. It is now the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. Only smoking cigarettes causes more lung cancer deaths. If you smoke and your house has very high levels of radon gas, then your risk of lung cancer is much higher.

Radon is found throughout the United States. You can’t see, smell or taste it. It comes from the breakdown of uranium in the soil and water and gets into the air you breathe. Radon gets into any building, home, office or school and can build to high levels of concentration.

The home is the most likely place to get radon poisoning because that’s where you spend most of your time. Radon from the soil is the main cause of radon poisoning, but it can also enter the house through well water.

The only way to know if you and your family are at risk of radon poisoning is to have your home tested for radon. The Environmental Protection Agency strongly recommends that all homes should be tested. Apartments and condos below the third floor should also be tested. It’s a very easy test that takes only a few minutes and is inexpensive to do. Millions of American homes have been tested for radon gas. Radon testing kits can be found online and in many hardware stores.

Contact your state officials for more information about radon in your area. Radon problems may be more common in some areas than others, but, any home can have a problem with radon gas. It’s a very good idea for home buyers and renters to ask about radon levels of the house before they buy or rent a home.

Most public water supplies do not have a radon problem, but if the air in your home has tested positive for radon gas and you have well water, you should have the water tested by a lab certified to measure radon in water.

There is no known safe level of radon gas. There can always be some level of risk. But, the risk can be lowered by sealing cracks in floors and walls. Simple systems of using fans can also help in reducing radon gas when it is found in the home. After any major renovations, the house should be retested again to make sure the levels have not increased.

Ira has been writing articles for over 11 years over a wide variety of subjects. Visit his latest website all about toilet paper holders which helps people find the best toilet paper storage and information they are looking for when remodeling their bathrooms.

Author: Ira Potts
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
Anti-angiogenic Food

Radon – A Faceless Killer

Did you know that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer? Following closely behind cigarette smoking, radon is responsible for about 21,000 deaths per year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. In fact, it could be lurking, undetectable, in your home right now. The EPA estimates that 1 in every 15 homes has elevated levels of radon. It is found in every area of every state and can even reside in your house but not the house next door.

Radon is a naturally occurring gas caused by the decay of uranium and radium, radioactive earth metals often found in rock and soil, and sometimes in well water. The dangers of radon were discovered in the 1950s in uranium mines, which hold high concentrations of radon, but it wasn’t until the 1980s when an employee at a nuclear power plant set off the radiation contamination alarms on his way into work that it became apparent that it might be a household threat.

Radon is not visible, has no odor, and by the time the effects manifest themselves in a person it is likely that significant lung damage has already occurred. Radon permeates into buildings from the ground. As warm air rises, it creates a vacuum causing continuous intake of the gases it contains. It wafts in through the tiniest of spaces and could seep through small cracks in the foundation, around pipes, sump pumps and drains, and even through walls and floorboards. Radon is a faceless enemy that subtly penetrates and slowly kills.

ARE YOU CONTAMINATED?

Detecting radon contamination is easy and could save your family’s lives. Though only some areas require mandatory radon testing when selling a house, it is a good idea to test your home regardless of whether you have just moved in, are planning to sell, or have been living there for years. In addition, it is recommended that a test be done before purchasing a home, and it is becoming common practice to do so.

There are several ways to test for elevated levels of radon in your home. There are two kinds of tests, passive and active, and both are easy enough to do yourself. The first, and quickest, is with a passive test. These are generally short-term and most commonly consist of placing canisters filled with charcoal in the location you’d like to test and leaving them for a period of time (usually from 3-7 days). If radon exists it will cause chemical changes in the item in the canister that, when sent to the laboratory in the pre-paid mailer included with the product, can then be analyzed. However, because radon levels can change from day to day or season to season, the EPA recommends doing two back-to-back short-term tests to maximize your chances of more accurately assessing your situation.

A second type of short-term test is called an alpha track detector and contains a piece of foil, film, or plastic that is used to count the particles thrown off by the radon gas decaying. Each particle leaves a tiny dent in the surface and the marks are then counted in the laboratory so that a figure proportional to how much radon is in the space can then be calculated.

The active test is long-term and requires the use of electricity. These are more accurate than the short-term tests, remaining in the home for 90 days or more, and are more likely to give you an overall year-round average radon reading than a short-term test. These are continuous monitors that record data at least once an hour, in addition to monitoring its own operation. Some even record temperature, humidity, air pressure, and other variances in the locale. Though there are some long-term tests that are relatively inexpensive, the better ones cost more than short-term testing, with some kits costing up to $400, and many are best administered by a professional.

FIXING THE PROBLEM

Now that you know how to test for radon in your home, what do you do if you find that you have elevated radon levels? Though the initial thought of having such a deadly gas amongst your family can at first seem daunting, realize that hundreds of thousands of homeowners have been in your shoes and have already made their homes safe.

There are several options that can prevent radon from entering your home. If you find a definitive place of entry, such as a sump pump, around a pipe, or through a crack in your foundation, you can simply block its path. This is a low-cost solution, but may not provide complete protection, as it may be only one of many sources of entry. The EPA does not consider sealing to be a primary reduction technique.

A second option is to create a sort of fresh air bubble under the building, which pushes the radon gas away from the home. An average cost is around $600 but, while this can be effective, it is unpredictable and needs loose soil and careful sealing.

Most mitigation techniques will involve some sort of fan that will draw air from below the basement floor and exhaust it above the roof, thus drawing the danger out and around the home instead of allowing it to rise through it. This can be done for under $2000. If you have a crawl space under your home you can also add a layer of special plastic, which will be sealed to the perimeter walls, under which the exhaust pipe will lie further minimizing the possibility of exposure.

Regardless of your method of detection, identifying radon in your home and fixing the problem ensures that the home you live in remains safe and comfortable. Don’t fear if you discover radon in preparation for selling your home. Take measures to prevent its entry and it can be used as a selling point, not a deterrent. No matter if you’re buying, selling, or have owned your home for many years, testing for radon is a wise and health-saving option.

Olympian Civil Home and Building Inspections (866) 476-2056 Copyright 2008 Olympian Civil Home and Building Inspectors, 2008 All Rights Reserved

Please visit my inspection mega-site for more information about my full service home inspection and environmental testing company. We service Brooklyn, Queens, New York, Manhattan, Staten Island, Nassau County, Yonkers and the Bronx. You may also wish to visit my learning library which is packed with great tips and advice for buyers, sellers and homeowners alike. Lastly, you can also take advantage of my VIP referrals for vendors in over 50 home related trades, where your satisfaction is assured and the inspection of vendors completed workmanship or products is conducted on your behalf for free; visit my site for more details or call toll free 866-476-2056.

http://www.olympiancares.com/inspection-library-new-york-brooklyn-staten-island-queens-nassau-county-long-island-bronx-manhattan-yonkers-westchester.htm

http://www.olympiancares.com/radon_page_1.htm

Author: Dennis Kanakis
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
Benefits of electric pressure cooker

Ranting and Raving About Radon

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.

Author: Christopher King
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
Import duty tariff

Health Risks of Radon and Ways to Reduce the Threat

Cancer is hitting a little closer to home these days. The American Cancer Society’s Cancer Facts & Figures for 2010 says about 569,490 Americans are expected to die of cancer this year. That is more than 1,500 people a day. In the U.S., cancer accounts for nearly 1 of every 4 deaths.

According to the American Cancer Society, lung cancer accounts for more deaths than any other cancer in both men and women. Smoking, second hand smoke and radon are the leading causes of lung cancer. Radon, a colorless, odorless, radioactive gas, is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths every year. About 2,900 of these deaths occur among people who have never smoked.

Radon forms from the decay of naturally occurring uranium, which is found in soil and rock throughout the world. It typically enters the home through cracks in the foundation wall or floors, gaps in suspended floors, around pipes or construction joints, as well as through cavities inside the walls. It can also enter through the water supply, although the EPA says in most cases the radon entering the home through water is a small risk compared with radon entering your home from the soil.

The EPA’s booklet “A Citizen’s Guide to Radon,” says nearly 1 out of every 15 homes in the U.S. is estimated to have elevated radon levels. And radon has been detected in every state. The only way to know if your home has dangerous levels of radon is to test it. The amount of radon in the air is measured in “Pico curies per liter of air,” or “pCi/L.” There are low-cost “do-it-yourself” radon test kits available through the mail and in hardware stores and other retail outlets. However, you can also hire a qualified radon tester to do the testing for you.

If you find you have radon in your home, it is possible to reduce radon levels.

Some techniques prevent radon from entering your home while others reduce radon levels after it has entered. EPA generally recommends methods which prevent the entry of radon. Soil suction, for example, prevents radon from entering your home by drawing the radon from below the home and venting it through a pipe, or pipes, to the air above the home where it is quickly diluted.

An effective method to reduce radon levels in homes with crawlspaces involves covering the earth floor with a high-density plastic sheet. A vent pipe and fan are used to draw the radon from under the sheet and vent it to the outdoors.

Sealing cracks and other openings in the foundation is a basic part of most approaches to radon reduction. Sealing the cracks limits the flow of radon into your home, thereby making other radon reduction techniques more effective and cost-efficient.

U.S. Surgeon General Health Advisory Richard Carmona said it best in 2005 when he issued a National Health Advisory on Radon. “Indoor radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the United States and breathing it over prolonged periods can present a significant health risk to families all over the country,” he said. “It’s important to know that this threat is completely preventable. Radon can be detected with a simple test and fixed through well-established venting techniques.”

While we are not yet able to cure cancer, we can do what we can to eliminate carcinogens in our homes.

Lou Cole is the president and owner of Emecole, Inc., a leading supplier in crawl space sealing and insulation materials for contractors throughout the United States and Canada. For more information about Emecole’s basement waterproofing and indoor air quality control line of products, visit http://www.emecole.com or write to 50 E. Montrose Dr. P.O. Box 7486, Romeoville, IL 60446.

Author: Louis Cole
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
iPhone iPad apps and games

Deadly High Radon Gas Levels – 3 Signs Your Home Has Them

How to determine if your Home has High Radon Gas Levels

Radon gas results from decomposition of of naturally-occurring uranium in the ground. Radon collects in attics and cellars through cracks in the floor or walls. Here are my 3 best tips when it comes to radon testing and mitigation:

1) There are affordable home radon testing kits available today. This is the best first step in detecting high radon levels in your home.

2) Symptoms of high radon gas levels include shortness of breath, chest pain, coughing up blood, and respiratory ailments such as bronchitis and pneumonia. Unfortunately, detecting radon without proper testing kits and no symptoms is that the gas is colorless and odorless. This is where radon got the name “the silent killer.”

3) Because radon comes from decaying uranium, those who live near uranium mines should be especially vigilant in their testing and mitigation efforts. Radon has a half-life of 3.8 days, which means that when detected, prevailing radon can be quickly eliminated. Ventilating your of home and sealing off cracks in the basement, walls, and floors is your best bet. In particular, you should check for cracked seals in basement floors and ceilings.

Preventing High Radon Gas Levels in your Home

The best way to avoid being harmed by high radon gas levels is to prevent exposure. Prevention primarily takes two forms:

1) Ventilation. Ensure that you have proper ventilation throughout your house. Invest in some ceiling and attic fans, and open doors and windows to get a cross-breeze through the home whenever possible.

2) Sealing cracks. Seal off any cracks in the floors that could possibly introduce radon into your home. Use a zero-permeability barrier to keep radon gas outside your living areas.

These steps will increase your family’s protection against radon poisoning. However, if you test your home and find out that levels are extremely high, it is best to contact a radon mitigation professional to handle the job.

Jeff Frobark works for Vetter Electric, certified NJ electrical contractors with 15+ years experience. Get tons of free information about radon treatment and NJ circuit breaker maintenance at their website.

Author: Jeff Frobark
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
News of Solar Power and Alternative Engery

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
Credit card currency-exchange fees

Radon Mitigation – How to Find Radon Gas and Get it Out of Your Home

If your home tests positive for radon gas, radon mitigation is critical to removing the gas and protecting the health of your family. Radon gas is a natural phenomenon and common around the country, but it can cause lung cancer if it remains trapped in a living space. Radon mitigation is the process needed to vent radon gas from the home, before the radon has a chance to build up to harmful levels.

Home construction techniques of the last 20 years have led to tighter, more energy-efficient homes. Unfortunately, these tighter homes also have the ability to hold more radon gas indoors. Therefore, it’s important to find out if you have radon in your home and if so, install a radon mitigation system to have it safely removed.

What is Radon?

Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that occurs naturally when radium decays in the soil. From there, the gas can move up through the ground and into your home via cracks and holes in its foundation, collecting in enclosed spaces like basements or ground-floor living areas. Without radon testing and proper radon mitigation, radon exposure is extremely dangerous, and the EPA estimates radon gas to be the number-one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and second leading cause of lung cancer overall.

The good news is that radon testing and radon mitigation are possible to accomplish without a lot of expense. A properly designed and installed system can bring down very high levels of radon gas just as soon as the system is turned on for the very first time.

Radon Testing

There are simple, affordable radon testing methods available for your home that will determine whether radon mitigation is necessary. Basic radon testing involves a charcoal adsorption canister, which is placed in the basement or lowest living area of your home for two to seven days. This canister adsorbs the radon gas and is sent to a radon lab for processing, with the results mailed back to you. A do-it-yourself test kit costs around $15 or you can have the radon test performed by a pro for about $100. Either way, plan on doing the test at a time when your whole home will remain closed except for standard exits and entries, as air circulation and escape will impact the accuracy of your test results.

Once the radon testing period is over and the adsorption canister sent to a lab for evaluation, the lab’s report will dictate the actual radon gas level found in your home. The results are reported in picoCuries per liter of air (pCi/L), and if your result is 4 pCi/L or above, you’ll need to have a radon mitigation system installed.

Radon Mitigation Systems

A soil suction system is the most common solution. This type of system involves installation of a vent pipe under the lowest level floor (typically a concrete basement floor). Then a specially designed fan works to pull the radon gas from the soil beneath the house and vent it safely to the outside, usually above the roof where it can’t reenter the structure. Sealing cracks in your homes foundation will make the system even more efficient. For best results, radon mitigation should be done only by a certified contractor who is insured and licensed, where required, by your county or state health department.

Most importantly, after the system is installed, it’s very important to get a second radon gas test done. Only by testing after the system is installed, can you be sure the system was properly designed and installed.

For more information on radon mitigation and health threats associated with radon gas, visit the EPA. For system images, visit the University of Illinois Extension web site on radon mitigation.

Tom Kraeutler is the Host, Founder and Chief Home Improvement Evangelist of The Money Pit. He is a hands-on home improvement broadcast journalist and the kind of guy homeowners want to call at midnight when their basement floods. He first earned his home improvement stripes as a professional home inspector, amassing over 20 years experience learning how houses are put together, and how they fall apart!

Author: Tom Kraeutler
Article Source: EzineArticles.com

radon mitigation