Known to be one of the most toxic chemicals with an extended impact on human health, radon gas is dangerous around our homes. When one gets exposed to high levels of radon gas, the chances of getting lung cancer increase a lot.
Where does radon gas come from? Well, the thing is that this chemical substance is naturally occurring in our environment, resulting from the normal breakdown of uranium within the ground. This explains the radioactive nature of the gas not to mention that it is pretty hard to detect due to the fact that it is both odorless and colorless.
Present within the open atmosphere that surrounds us, radon gas presents no risk for human health. Radon only becomes dangerous when it accumulates within closed spaces: in mines or in home basements.
This is why lots of tests need to be performed regularly in order to detect whether there are accumulations of radon gas in the house. As a radioactive element, radon will create some decay products that are equally dangerous: the most common of these is polonium, a substance that emits alpha particles.
When inhaled, these radon gas wastes could cause damage at the bronchial level, unbalancing the health status of the lungs in general. How does radon gas get into our house? Well, the problem is that the houses are not completely isolated from the exterior environment: there are small cracks in the rocks or in the soil on which they are built, and therefore, it can easily seep through basement drains, cracks in concrete surfaces or joints.
Furthermore, in case radon gas gets trapped in the water from a well, then chances are that it will be released in the air when the water source is used. Presently, alarming radon gas levels in homes have been reported in both Europe and North America, so that presently, there are special radon testing kits available on the market which can be used by any home owner.
The most popular detectors used for measuring the random gas levels in homes are the alpha track detectors and the charcoal canisters; after a certain exposure period to the air in the house, such devices are analyzed in laboratories.
According to the results, prevention or mitigation measures will be taken afterwards. In order to reduce the risk of your home being contaminated with radon gas, it is good to renovate or repair any basement floors particularly if they are not cement made. Then, all cracks and openings in the walls – even if apparently superficial – should be sealed properly.
You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers! Ask any person at Louisville Home Inspection for more information about radon gas inspection.
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