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March 6, 2018
Many Maryland homeowners are aware of the dangers associated with the colorless and odorless gas carbon monoxide; but fewer are aware of an invisible, yet just as harmful gas that could be lurking in the home — radon.
Radon is a colorless and odorless radioactive gas, produced by the decay of uranium in soil and rock. It occurs naturally in the environment in both water and air, and you may even have trace amounts of it in your home. Though safe at low concentrations, it can pose serious health risks at high concentrations.
The Dangers of Radon
Prolonged exposure to high levels of radon is strongly linked with lung cancer. In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, radon exposure is the number-one cause of lung cancer in non-smokers — and the second leading cause of lung cancer overall. This means that if you are exposed to high levels of radon for an extended period of time, your chances of developing lung cancer are higher.
Remember — wherever you live on the Eastern Shore, there is some amount of radon in your home. At low concentrations, you and your family have nothing to worry about. When radon levels rise from the average outdoor concentration of 0.4 pCi/L up to 2.7 pCi/L or more, that is when there is reason to be concerned. Concentrations of 4 pCi/L or more are especially dangerous and must be addressed immediately.
How to Keep Radon Out of Your Home
Radon emanates from fractured bedrock and can enter the home via cracks in the foundation, sump pumps, or loose fitting pipes. If radon levels ever reach 2.7 pCi/L or more, it’s important to take action as soon as possible. To keep you and your family are safe, be sure to have a home performance specialist assess your indoor air quality. In addition, be sure to have a professional seal air leaks and ensure proper radon mitigation in your crawl space.
At Total Home Performance, we offer a number of crawl space services, including encapsulation, to help Eastern Shore homeowners prepare their homes for expert radon mitigation. Our crawl space services will not only improve indoor air quality but also make your home more comfortable and energy efficient. Talk to our experts about how we can improve your home.