Radon - Topic Overview
How can you test your home's radon levels? continued...
You can hire a
qualified tester to do the test, or you can use a do-it-yourself test kit. Use only home tests
that are labeled "meets EPA requirements." You can buy radon test kits by calling the EPA at 1-800-SOS-RADN (1-800-767-7236). There are two types of tests. Both measure radon levels in the air.
- The short-term test kit stays in your home or office for 2 to 90 days. Radon levels vary daily and from season to season. So you may want to follow up the first short-term test with a second test.
- The long-term test kit stays in your home or office for more than 90 days. A long-term test will give more accurate results.
If you have questions about radon in your house, you can get help from the EPA by calling 1-800-55-RADON (1-800-557-2366).
How do you remove high levels of radon?
If tests find a high level of radon, you'll need to reduce it. There are
two parts to this:
- Preventing radon from entering the
building. The most common way to do this is through
sub-slab depressurization, which vents air
from beneath the foundation. This work should be done by a qualified contractor. Other control methods include
sealing cracks in the foundation or walls and using air cleaners.2
- Venting radon out of the building. Once the radon is prevented from entering the building, venting can be done to reduce
the level of radon.
These may include using fans, blowers, and suction devices to remove radon in the air in crawl spaces, basements, and other areas.
Use an EPA-qualified contractor with proper training in radon reduction to help with this work.
After radon reduction or prevention procedures
are done, the home or building should be retested. You may need to retest more than once. It is usually safe to live in
the home or building while the radon is being vented, but you may want to
confirm this with your local EPA office.
For general information about removing or reducing radon in your house, you can call the Radon Fix-It Hotline at 1-800-644-6999. If you
live outside the U.S., you can call your regional environmental protection
office for more information.