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Frequently asked questions about radon

Read our explanations for frequently asked questions regarding radon below!

Radon comes from the soil beneath your home. It occurs naturally from the radioactive decay of radium and uranium in the soil. The amount of radon in the soil depends on complex variables in your soil's chemistry and varies from one plot of land to the next. Radon levels can range from a few hundred to several thousands of pCi/L. The likelihood of radon escaping the soil and entering your home is dependent on various factors including weather, soil porosity, soil moisture and suction within your house.

Where does radon come from?

Imagine your house as a large chimney. As air warms, it rises to the attic and leaks out small openings in the attic and little cracks in the upper floor windows, creating a small suction at the lowest level of the house. This suction is responsible for pulling the radon out of the soil and into your home.


While this makes it seem as though radon contamination is inevitable, don't worry. Even in houses that tested as high as 2,000-3,000 pCi/L, there hasn't been even one house that could not mitigate to an acceptable level.

How does radon get into the house?

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You don't need to worry about radon contamination if your water comes from a municipal reservoir supply. Radon decays away to practically nothing when the water is stored in a reservoir for more than 30 days. To be exact, radon levels are cut in half every 3.825 days through natural radioactive decay.

What about radon in city water?

Radon exposure can pose a serious risk to your health and is the second leading cause of lung cancer. When radon decays, it shoots off sub-atomic particles called "alpha particles". If an alpha particle comes into contact with the chromosomes in a lung cell, it can mutate the cell and cause cancer. While healthy immune systems will recognize and destroy these mutant cells before they can multiply into a cancerous growth, some people are much more at risk than others.

What is the risk of radon exposure?

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