Even if you don’t know everything that goes into a home inspection, you probably know that it has to do with making sure your structure is fit for habitation and that it is up to code. There’s a lot more to examining the condition of your home, however, and at Above Grade Home Inspections, we consider it our duty to deliver the most complete and thorough report on your house so that you have the greatest opportunity to ensure a safe and comfortable environment for your family.
Along these lines, Above Grade Home Inspections is proud to provide a slew of services that go above and beyond the average home inspection. In addition to performing a full inspection of your structure, including interior and exterior elements, roofing, foundation, basement, crawlspaces, attic, HVAC, plumbing, and electrical elements, we also offer radon testing. This crucial test can help you to decide if you want to purchase a home you’re considering, or alternately, give you the information you need to get your home ready for sale.
What is radon? What can you expect during the testing process? Why is testing so important and why should it be performed as part of the home inspection process? At Above Grade Home Inspections, we’re more than happy to inform you of the relevance of every service we offer so you’re fully aware of the benefits you’ll gain.
What is Radon?
Radon is a radioactive gas that emits alpha radiation, much like plutonium. It is produced when naturally-occurring uranium in the Earth begins to break down. Although it is most commonly found in soil and igneous rock, it could also come from well water or other sources.
Radon is tasteless, colorless, and odorless, and is sometimes referred to as “the silent killer” because it is virtually undetectable by the human senses and in high enough amounts, it can prove fatal. In fact, it is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S., with roughly 200,000 lung cancer deaths each year attributed to radon. In addition, EPA testing in seven states showed that radon levels in 1 of every 3 homes exceed acceptable limits.
How does Radon Gas Get In My Home?
Radon is the heaviest gas known to man, and it is nine times denser than air. It is capable of penetrating a variety of building materials, including concrete, mortar, sheetrock, wood paneling, insulation, and other elements that make up the structure of your home. Exposure to radon generally occurs as a result of inhalation, although it may also be ingested if present in groundwater.
Radon in the soil may enter the home through your foundation. This is because the air pressure in your home is less than the pressure in surrounding soil. Radon can, therefore, be drawn into your home interior through drains, cracks, and other points of ingress.
The best thing you can do to find out if you have radon in your home is allow your home inspector to perform radon testing. When you know if there’s a problem (or not) you can decide how to proceed.
What Happens During Radon Testing?
There are a couple of different ways to perform radon testing. It can be done with a kit, which requires that testing materials be sent to a lab in order to get results. This can take several days. Tests can also be performed using a machine, which delivers much more expedient results. In both cases, the testing process will take a couple of days. However, results can be gleaned from the machine as soon as testing is completed.
Anyone interested in buying or selling a home should perform radon testing, which is why Above Grade Home Inspections offers this service. In truth, radon levels can vary from season to season based on temperature, humidity, air pressure, ventilation, and other factors. Regardless of the findings of this test, you may want to perform additional testing, either to make sure that your home remains radon-free, or to ensure that radon-mitigation efforts are working.
Why is Radon Testing So Important?
The health and safety of your home and family are of the utmost importance, and this is why it’s imperative to conduct radon testing. Although levels may vary and it could take time for radon to have a negative effect on residents in the home, you need to know if significant radon levels exist so that you can take steps to mitigate harm.
If you’re buying or selling a home, contact Above Grade Home Inspections today at 845-345-8967 or firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an appointment for home inspection and radon testing.