What does a radon test of 4 pCi/L and above mean?


Many sophisticated home owners require a radon test as part of the inspection process. But what does it mean when you receive the test results?

Why is radon gas a problem?

Radon gas or more accurately its decay products, radon decays in 3.8 days from the time it is produced, can cause lung cancer.  When polonium decay’s it produces alpha radiation and can cause DNA damage.  When the DNA in the lung cell is damaged hopefully it dies.  However, if your body repairs the cell it can cause a mutated cell. If this happens the mutated cell can be a cancer cell.

If the test is under 4 pCi/L does it mean that there is no danger?

No.  The reason EPA and the state of Illinois has established that level as an action level is that most homes can have the levels reduced to below 4 pCi/L at a reasonable cost.  There is no absolutely safe level. However, the higher the radon level the greater the risk.

How does radon enter a home?

Radon gas enters through cracks in the floor, cracks in relief cuts, open earth areas like crawlspaces and open sump pits. The reason radon gas enters, through the cracks and open earth areas, is ground gas pressure is greater than the pressure inside of the home due to air being removed by: clothes driers, furnaces, central vac systems, range hoods and whole house fans.   When the radon system installation is finished, radon levels will be dramatically reduced.

What does a radon mitigation system cost?

In Illinois the state radon regulations requires a signed contract that includes the total cost of the radon system.

1)  For most homes the cost of a radon system can range between $850 – $2,200 depending on the foundation type, the number of different types of foundations, and the design of the home.

2) For commercial buildings and schools the cost is based on the scope of the project.


For more information about radon gas visit us at www.nelsonradon.com.  If you need a radon system installation contact us at 309-241-8104.