Radon is formed by the natural breakdown of uranium, which is found in nearly all soils. Due to differences in pressure, radon-laden soil gasses enter your home through cracks and holes in the foundation. Radon can accumulate inside the home, resulting in elevated indoor radon levels.
Although radon is present virtually everywhere, it often poses the greatest health risk to us at home. Some of the radon that enters a home leaves through windows, doors, and other openings outside. The concern is when it accumulates in a home, where we often spend most of our time.
Because you cannot see, smell or taste radon, the only way to determine if your Raleigh-Durham home has an unhealthy radon level is through radon testing. At Raleigh Radon, we offer professional, electronic radon testing and radon mitigation advice to homeowners, REALTORS®, home inspectors and more throughout the Triangle.
Radon Testing Services We Offer
Indoor Air Quality Testing
The best method to determine your health risk from exposure to radon gas is to test the air you breathe. Raleigh Radon conducts radon tests using 48-hour continuous radon monitors, which take one measurement every hour for 48 hours to determine an average radon level in indoor air. Upon completion of the two-day test, the results are known immediately.
Among non-smokers, the risk of developing radon-induced lung cancer is an equal function of the amount of time exposed to radon and the level of radon present. For example, the risk of developing lung cancer is roughly the same for a non-smoker who lived in a house with a radon level of 2 pCi/L for 20 years and one who lived with a radon level of 8 pCi/L for 5 years. (For current smokers and former smokers, lung cancer risk from radon is a function of the amount of time exposed to radon, the level of radon present, and smoking history.)
Our digital monitors calculate the results automatically, so there is no human error involved in analysis. This automation eliminates any bias in the testing process, which is particularly important in a real estate transaction.
Granite Countertops Radon Testing
In some homes, building materials (i.e. granite and certain concrete products) can be a source of radon gas. According to the EPA, it's possible for any granite sample to contain uranium and other naturally-occurring radioactive elements. Such elements can produce radon gas; thus, granite used for countertops may variably contribute to indoor radon levels.
While natural stones can emit radon, the EPA does not believe that sufficient data exists to conclude that the types of granite commonly used in homes are significantly increasing indoor radon levels. However, measurement of specific samples can reveal higher than expected radon levels on a case-by-case basis.
Currently, no widely-accepted radiation testing protocol exists for granite countertops, and no radiation testing is required on granite products. According to the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (AARST), direct measurement of radon emanation from a material such as granite is not a reliable indicator of the radon levels in the air you breathe. Such measurements are subject to large errors in estimating risk due to the variability of emanation rates, the variability of ventilation rates, and the volume of space where the material is contained.
The best assessment of your radon health risk is to test the air you breathe. Although not specifically designed for measuring radon emissions, multiple continuous radon monitors can be used to conduct diagnostic radon gas testing. One monitor would be set up under normal protocols, and another monitor would be placed in a room containing the granite countertop.
While such testing would not definitively identify the source of radon, it's useful in comparing radon levels in different areas of the home, including areas with granite countertops or other radon-emitting materials.
Do I Have to Have My Home Tested for Radon?
The U.S. Surgeon General, U.S. EPA, American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists, and the American Lung Association recommend that all homes be tested for radon gas.
Unlike other states, there is currently no regulation in North Carolina requiring that any building be tested for radon. Today, the majority of radon testing is taking place in homes as individual homeowners make the decision to test their living environment and protect their family from a largely preventable health risk.
Call Raleigh Radon’s Radon Inspectors for Radon Testing & Detection Services in the Triangle
To schedule your radon test or find out more about radon mitigation in the Raleigh-Durham area with Raleigh Radon, please fill out our online form or give us a call at 919-205-8180. Whether you’re interested in radon testing, radon mitigation, or have questions about indoor air quality in general, we’d be happy to assist you.
Contact Raleigh Radon for radon services in Apex, Cary, Carrboro, Chapel Hill, Clayton, Creedmoor, Durham, Fuquay-Varina, Garner, Hillsborough, Holly Springs, Knightdale, Morrisville, Raleigh, Rolesville, Wake Forest and Youngsville.