The EPA has designated January as National Radon Action month. In an effort to help educate the people in West Central Minnesota about Radon, Chappell Central will be posting a series of blog posts this month about Radon dangers, testing, and fixing.
Radon is a word you probably do not pay much attention to until you hear or experience the dangers of it. Radon is a colorless, odorless and cancer-causing gas that may be in your home. It is a naturally occurring gas It is formed by the radioactive decay of uranium in rock, soil, and water. Radon can get into new homes, old homes, schools, or offices through cracks in your foundation or walls.
Dangers of Radon
The Surgeon General has stated that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer today, with smoking being the first. The average Minnesota home has a radon level of 3.8pCi/L (picoCuries per liter), which is comparable to smoking 10 cigarettes a day. If you are a past or present smoker, you are at greater risk from radon then a non-smoker. The EPA estimates that radon contributes to about 21,000 cancer deaths annually.
Testing for Radon
Exposure to radon is also a preventable health risk. As recommended by the EPA, the first step in reducing your family’s risk of lung cancer is to do a radon test in your home. If you are in the West Central Minnesota area, Chappell Central HVAC professionals can do a radon test in your home or school. Short-term “charcoal canister” radon tests are also available for a homeowner to do themselves and are available at Menard’s or Home Depot. If you do your own radon test, and the result is greater the 4 pCi/L, you should follow up with another test to verify that the results are accurate.
Unless you test for Radon, there is no way of telling how much is actually present in your home. Take action and get your home tested for Radon this January. It is easy and inexpensive and could save a life. If you have questions about radon testing, please view the EPA resources above or contact Chappell Central at 320-235-2151. You can also post a question on the Chappell Central Facebook page.