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What is Radon? Why is it a problem?
Radon is a naturally occurring, invisible, colorless, odorless, radioactive gas. Elevated levels have been found in homes in every state. Any home can have a problem (new or old homes, well-sealed or drafty homes, and homes with or without basements). The EPA estimates that radon, the second leading cause of lung cancer, causes 15,000 lung cancer deaths per year in the US.
How do I test for radon and what do my results mean?
The EPA has different recommendations for different testing situations. They have produced the "The Citizen's Guide to Radon" and "The Home Buyer's and Seller's Guide to Radon" to address these different situations. Call your local state air and radiation branch to request home test kits.
NYS Department of Health
Bureau of Environmental Radiation Protection
2 University Place
Albany, NY 12203-3399
How do you reduce elevated radon?
The most common and the most effective means of radon remediation is called "Sub-Slab Suction." Sub-Slab suction (also called "sub slab ventilation") is performed by drilling a hole through the foundation floor and pulling the radon gas from under the house through PVC pip, using a fan, and exhausting it to the outside air. The average cost for a contractor to lower radon levels in a home is about $1,200, although this can range from $500 to about $2.500.
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