Radon gas is commonly checked for before you purchase a house. In fact, it can be tested for at any time. The test is simple; it involves analyzing the air quantity and deciding how much radon gas is present. The best place to test for radon gas is the lowest point in your house. It is a heavy gas; heavier than air and sinks to the ground. If you have a cellar then this would be the ideal place to put a radon monitor. This will tell you the hourly, weekly and even monthly levels of radon gas present in your home. You will then be able to undertake radon mitigation techniques.
Why it is Necessary
Radon gas is the product of decomposing uranium. Uranium is a highly radioactive material which takes an exceptionally long time to decompose. The result of this lengthy decomposition is the constant creation of radon. Even though radon gas itself has a short life, there is more being produced all the time.
As radon gas is created from a radioactive material it is not surprising that it is radioactive itself. What you may not realize is that extended exposure to radon gas will increase your risk of lung cancer. It is currently believed to be the biggest cause of lung cancer in non smokers. The main reason for this is that radon gas has a short lifespan; it quickly decomposes into a solid. These miniscule pieces of solid material can get into your lungs and will stick to the internal walls. This will reduce the effectiveness of the lungs at sending oxygen round the body.
Radon Mitigation Techniques
Once you realize how dangerous radon gas can be you will be eager to understand what radon mitigation techniques there are and how they can be effectively employed to reduce or even eliminate the risk of breathing in radon gas.
There are several methods for effective undertaking radon mitigation:
The Vent Pipe
This is the most commonly used method; especially when there is plenty of space to work with. You will need to install a vent pipe under your house; in the crawl space. Alternatively you can put the vent pipe under your cellar; if possible.
The vent pipe will continue until it is outside the house. It will then turn ninety degrees and climb straight up your wall and into the air space above the house. The vent pipe will need to have a fan fitted; preferably within the first part of the pipe. Air is sucked out of the house and pushed into the atmosphere above the house. This expelled air will settle back down fairly easily; it will dilute as it sinks; rendering it harmless.
This is the most effective way to reduce any airborne or waterborne pieces of radon gas trying to enter the system. The water, with Radon in, is processed through a giant charcoal filter. This captures the radon gas and purifies the water. The charcoal merely acts as a holding vessel for radon. At some point this charcoal will need to be replaced; the charcoal to be thrown away is regarded as radioactive waste.
Radon mitigation is an important role and one which can dramatically improve the air quality where you live; it is essential to make sure your house is radiation free and reap the health benefits that come with this!