Radon is a tasteless, odorless, invisible gas that occurs naturally throughout the earth’s crust. Despite being discovered in 1900, this radioactive, cancer-causing gas is still wrought with misconception, and has only been a concern in homes since the mid 1980’s.
Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S., only smoking causes more. In fact, the EPA estimates that annual radon related cancer deaths are greater than drunk driving and home fires combined. The National Cancer Institute also estimates that radon induced lung cancer costs the U.S. over $2 Billion each year in both direct and indirect healthcare costs.
“Don’t worry, this neighborhood doesn’t have radon.”
Unfortunately, this cringe-worthy phrase is common for some sellers, agents, contractors, and even other home inspectors. What they don’t realize is that they’re currently breathing in radon as they say it! Radon is everywhere, we simply measure how much is in your house. Since it is a single-atom gas, it can easily penetrate drywall, concrete, wood, and most insulation. Also, your neighbor’s radon level has no effect on the radon level in your house; some of the highest readings in the U.S. were next to houses well below the EPA’s level for recommended action. The only way to know is to test.
We are certified with the National Radon Proficiency Program, #104676. In our service area, (Hampden and Hampshire counties,) the EPA states that about 11% of homes are above the 4.0 pCi/L threshold in which they recommend mitigation. Our results over the last 15 years of testing seem to generally resemble that finding, about 1/10 houses.
We use multiple electret ion chambers to take a 48 hour reading of the lowest livable space to get the most accurate Radon air measurement. If you’d like to add a Radon measurement to the home inspection, we can offer a significant discount since we will be at the house already. Sometimes as low as $75.00 (Depending on the distance from the office.)
Massachusetts Licensed Home Inspector #592 & #775.
NEPMA Wood Destroying Insect Inspection Regestry #070012 & #140241.
NEHA National Radon Proficiency Program #104676 RT.
Commonwealth of Mass. Licensed Construction Supervisor #088664
Thank you for making 2018 our busiest year, by far. I finally had the chance to finish off the core elements of the website and look forward to starting our 13th year of operation! As always, if you need a home inspection, just give us a call at 413-579-5496.