Most People are Unaware of the Silent Killer called Radon in their Homes
Data pulled from Goldman Sachs shows that there are approximately 130 million homes. Analysis of home data in the United States show that approximately half of homes have a basement or crawl space. Therefore we can estimate about 65 million homes having a basement or crawl space. Why does this matter? This means that, with an average American household size consisting of 2.5 people, that 162.5 million people are susceptible to radon in their homes.
Most people are unaware of what radon even is until they have a radon test performed by their home inspector prior to purchasing their home. Radon is a cancer-causing radioactive gas that is extremely toxic, odorless and invisible. If the radon test results come back below 4pCi/L, the EPA’s recommended action level for radon exposure, then most people never think about it again. This is extremely dangerous because there are no ‘safe’ levels of radon gas.
At the 4pCi/L level, radon carries about 1,000 times the risk of death as any other EPA carcinogen. This is the reason the Surgeon General’s Office has estimated that as many as 20,000 lung cancer deaths are attributed each year by radon and is the 2nd leading cause of cancer after smoking. Most scientific organizations believe that 12% of lung cancers annually are attributed to radon in the United States. Yet an overwhelming majority of people do not know much about it so a little education can go a long way in protecting families and especially children due to their higher respiration rate.
So how do homeowners protect themselves from radon?
The most important thing to do is to install at least one radon detector in the basement or crawlspace and possibly a few more in other areas of the home. We recommend the Airthings Wave Smart Radon Detector due to its ability to send alerts to your smartphone if elevated radon levels are discovered at any given time. Radon is an integral part of indoor air quality and to protect your family’s health it is essential to know what the radon levels are in your home. It has a long battery life of 1.5 years, provides the first result within an hour and most importantly it provides real time radon level data.
Even if you have had a radon mitigation system to reduce the radon levels in your home there is no way you can know if the radon fan stopped working unless you check it regularly.
Who goes into their basement to check if their radon mitigation system is operating on a daily basis?
I certainly do not so when my fan failed after about 7 years I had no idea and just stumbled upon the issue on one of my monthly visits to the basement mechanical room. It was extremely stressful not knowing how many weeks or months my family was exposed to elevated radon levels in my home after the fan stopped running. Now I have a safety as my radon detector will alert me whenever there is a change int he radon levels. It provides great peace of mind knowing I can protect my family.
We hope that every homeowner can see the benefit of placing a radon detector in their home so that no one in their family becomes a statistic.