What is Radon?
August 26, 2021

What is Radon?

“Radon” sounds like it could be the name of a robot supervillain. Similar to a supervillain, radon does harm to humans. The difference though is that radon gas is very real. It sneaks into your home through cracks in your foundation, sump pump pits, and loose-fitting pipe penetrations. Once it’s there, it can’t get out without the help of professionals. It slinks unnoticed and makes its way into your breathable air. It’s colorless, odorless, and the only thing that puts you more at risk for lung cancer than this pervasive bad guy is cigarettes. The EPA estimates that one in fifteen homes in The United States has dangerous, elevated levels of radon. But what exactly is radon? The professionals at Radon Crew help clear up some of these questions.

What Is Radon Gas?
Remember in science class when you learned about the periodic table of elements? Radon is one of those elements. Radon is a radioactive gas that’s about eight times heavier than air. As the uranium found in soil slowly decays, it goes through several steps or “decay chains.” Without going too far into the details of the aforementioned science class, suffice to say that radon gas is the product of one of those steps. As uranium decays, it makes radon. Radon gas is colorless, odorless, and tasteless. At 96 degrees below zero Fahrenheit, radon actually becomes a liquid that glows bright yellow. Unless something has gone terribly wrong with our climate, humans cannot detect its presence when in gas form without special radon testing equipment and training.

Where Is Radon Gas Found?
Technically, radon is everywhere as it is produced naturally when soil decomposes. As the soil under your home breaks down and decays, radon gas is produced and travels up into your home. There are only five states in the U.S. that have low levels of radon. According to World Population Review, South Dakota has the second highest levels of radon in the country. (Alaska has the highest.) In 1993, the Environmental Protection Agency attempted to alleviate the radon problem by producing a map with zones indicating where it might be more present. However, the EPA also clearly stated that homes located in lower level zones have been found to have dangerous levels after testing. It’s also well known that neighbors can have very different levels of radon present, despite their homes being right next to each other. In short, we know that radon is everywhere, but it’s impossible to predict if radon is accumulating in your home without proper testing.

Why Is Radon Gas a Problem?
Once radon enters your home, it doesn’t leave on its own. The air pressure inside of a house is typically lower than the air pressure outside. This causes air to move inward, not flow out. It’s like your house is creating a small suction, trapping this radioactive gas inside. Radon’s link to lung cancer has been suspected for almost fifty years. In the early 2000s, rigorous studies unequivocally proved it. Yale Medicine quotes that twenty percent of people who died from lung cancer in 2018 never smoked. More recently, radon exposure has been linked to breast cancer. Further research is still developing about the additional risks of radon. What is certain is that every homeowner should get their home tested. The EPA recommends radon testing once every two years.


Protect Yourself with Radon Crew

Don’t risk it—make sure your home is safe today. We are dedicated to making sure your home and its occupants are protected from the dangers of radon. Our team will not only test for radon, but also install radon gas dectors to monitor radon levels, and a radon mitigation system to remove it from your home. We will help you find the best solution for your unique situation: At Radon Crew, we offer a host of testing processes differing in duration, budget, and depth of analysis, depending on your particular needs. Radon gas detectors and radon mitigaton systems should be at the top of your list to protect your family from radon gas leaks.

Regardless of the age of your home, radon testing is an urgent matter that should not be taken lightly. Visit our website today to find out more about radon mitigation systems as well as our suite of radon services so you can keep yourself protected against radon.