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Radon

January is Radon Action Month

Radon Testing- Why Test Now?
Written by DRHOLMEAR on January 28, 2013

Does my house need to be tested for radon? When should I test? Where should I test?
Radon, as you may know, is a radioactive, cancer-causing gas. You can’t see it, smell it, or taste it, but you may be breathing it right now. Children, the elderly, and those with compromised health are particularly at risk. According to the EPA, Radon is the #1 cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and kills over 20,000 Americans each and every year. The EPA estimates that as many as 1 in 5 houses have dangerously high levels of radon. Yet many of us have never heard about it before. Radon truly is a silent killer. Fortunately, testing for radon is an easy and inexpensive process. Even better, now is the perfect time to test! So why is this the best time to test for radon? Radon gas is very dense and much heavier than normal air. This causes radon to gather in the lowest levels of a house or building. Much like water always running downhill, radon likes to gather towards the lowest spots in your home. During the winter months, most people keep their houses closed and shuttered up – who wants to let the cold air in?!? The lower amount of air circulation in the house allows radon to gather even more and in even higher concentrations. For most homes and buildings, radon levels are highest in the winter months. This means that the next few months will be the best time to test for radon – you want to know what the highest levels in your house are, and if those levels are dangerous. It is wise to take advantage of the seasonal conditions during these winter months to test for radon in your home if you have not already. So, where in your home should you test for radon? For your first radon test, the EPA recommends placing the test on the lowest inhabited level of your home. Since radon gas sinks, by testing on the lowest level of your home you will be testing the area of your home that is most at risk for radon. And by testing during the winter months, you test during the time of year where your home is most at risk for radon too!
Everyone in the United States has some level of radon gas in their home. Radon has been found sporadically throughout our Six County area. Any house testing above 4 picocuries per liter of air (pCi/L) needs to be fixed per EPA recommendations. Below are the available radon test results for each of our Counties:


County

<4 pCi/L

>=4 pCi/L

Maximum

Average

Total Tests

Juab

45.5%

54.5%

61

6.3

77

Millard

81.0%

19.0%

10

2.9

58

Piute

75.0%

25.0%

23.5

4.7

8

Sanpete

42.7%

57.3%

33.7

6.1

232

Sevier

54.6%

45.4%

101.3

10.8

174

Wayne

62.1%

37.9%

25.6

4.7

29

The only way to know if your home contains Radon is to test it. The test kits are inexpensive and easy to use.
You can order a test kit through the Utah Department of Environmental Quality.
Online: www.radon.utah.gov and click “Order a Test Kit.”

 

 

January 23, 2017