Radon Rears its Ugly Head
Posted in the Colorado Springs Forum
Pike Ntl Forest, CO
#1 Aug 30, 2013
Radon Rears it's Ugly Head!
This is an abreviated excerpt from my Real Estate Blogg. The complete post has illustrations and Diagrams to go along with it that I can't get on this post.
***RADON SHOULD NEVER BE THE REASON YOU WALK AWAY FROM YOUR DREAM HOME!***
Radon is an odorless, Tasteless, colorless, invisible, radioactive gas that comes from the decay of Uranium and Radium found 'salt and peppered' in rock and bedrock buried beneath the soil on which we build our houses. When the Uranium and radium decay, it naturally produces the element Radon which exists in a gaseous form.
Beneath our homes, the Radon gas is working its way to the surface, moving from higher concentration to lower concentration,(or you could say from higher pressure to lower pressure). When Radon gas is working its way to the surface and our home is positioned above it, the Radon gas becomes trapped by the concrete floor and footers that support our houses. Unfortunately, concrete is porous, and believe it or not, Radon gas can slowly come up directly through the concrete floor. And if the floor has any cracks, expansion joints, or any other openings to the soil below, Radon gas can even more easily find it's way into our homes. The negative pressure in the basement pulls that gas into the basement where it builds up into potentially dangerous concentrations.
From the basement the radon slowly works its way up to the first floor, then the second floor, eventually into the attic space and our through the roof and vents. Usually radon levels are higher in the winter.(Also, the ground outside freezes and makes it harder for Radon to dissipate naturally and increases the chances of radon entering into nearby homes).
UNDERSTANDING YOUR RISK.
Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer (the number one cause if you discount smoking). Lung cancer has an 85% mortality rate. The means that 85% of all people who get lung cancer will die from it, although medical treatment and remission can extend life for many years after diagnosis. Radon exposure is a lifetime cumulative exposure risk. What that means is that your risk is determined by how much you've been exposed to over your lifetime. You're at less risk being in a high Radon environment for 2 years then if you were in a much lower Radon level for 20 years.
Radon concentration is measured in Picocuries per liter (pCi/L) of concentration. The average Radon level in the air outside your home is 0.04 pCi/L The national average indoor concentration for Radon in residential properties is 1.3 pCi/L. The level at which the EPA recommends remediation is 4.0 pCi/L. There is no maximum possible indoor Radon levels.
The most common method of removing Radon from a home is thru the installation of an Active Sub-slab Depressurization (ASD) system. This is a length of PVC or ABS pipe that run from a point beneath the concrete slab in your basement to a point above the roofline of the home. The pipe is routed discreetly either thru interior walls, closets, or a garage. If no interior path is possible, the pipe can be run up the exterior of the home in the least visible location. On this pipe is an Radon Fan which runs constantly, creating vacuum in the pipe. This suction acts like a straw and draws the radon gases up the pipe and ejects them harmlessly into the atmosphere.
These system are incredibly effective and reliable. Most radon fans can operate maintenance-free for decades, ensuring controlled, low radon levels in the home. The goal of these systems is to reduce radon levels below the 4.0 pCi/L action level. Once installed, a Radon system should be tested by an independent testing company. A successful radon system should also be re-tested every 2 years.
- Daniel Fitzgerald, Broker
Keller Williams Clients' Choice Realty
complete post: http://www.pikes-peak-broker.com/blog/radon-r...
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