What is Radon and How Can I Test My Home for It?

HomeIn Canada, the number one cause of lung cancer for people who don’t smoke is radon. As a result, nearly 3,000 Canadians are killed by this radioactive gas. According to recent statistics, the radon levels in nearly one in three homes exceed safety guidelines. The good news is, there are some effective ways to detect this colorless and odorless gas with radon testing.

What is Radon?

Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that’s produced by decaying uranium. Radon can be found in nearly every type of soil and low levels of the gas are found in the air. Radon can become dangerous when it gets trapped, which can happen right inside your home.

When the radon in the soil around your home turns into radioactive radiation, it can leak through pores in the concrete or through gaps in the walls and floors. Other ways radon gets inside your home include:

  • Support Posts
  • Window Casements
  • Floor Drains
  • Construction Joints
  • Dirt Floors

The risk of your home having radon increases if the soil around your home contains large amounts of uranium, and also if your home has poor ventilation. If you have high levels of radiation inside your home over an extended period of time, it can lead to lung cancer.

How to Test for Radon

The concentration of radon is measured in units of becquerels per cubic meter (Bq/m3). According to the World Health Organization, radon levels in your home should not exceed 100 Bq/ m3. While you aren’t required to test your home for radon, it is highly recommended to do so.

In countries like the U.K. and the United States, home sellers in some locations need to disclose whether or not the home is in a radon-affected area. One state in particular requires all daycare operators to test for radon.

Since Canada has no such laws, it’s important for homeowners in Calgary to take matters into their own hands when it comes to testing for radon. You can do this in one of two ways. The first is by purchasing your own long-term radon testing kit. This kit measures the air inside your home for a minimum of three months, after which you’ll send it to a lab for analysis.

Calgary’s Most Trusted AC Company

Another effective way to test for radon is by contacting our certified radon measurement professionals at Alberta Mountain Air. Call us today to get a radon test kit installed in your home. All of our service technicians are certified in radon testing and mitigation.