Radon level question

Good afternoon, I am hoping someone can help me. I am slightly freaked out. I bought my home in 2011. Our home is very drafty… to the point in the winter you can see curtains moving. For whatever reason radon entered my mind so i purchased a digital device that gives short term and long term readings. I placed it in my basement which is finished and just got my reading back which was 67.5 pCi/L. I should note it was the first 2 days I put the heat on in my basement. I felt sick to my stomach. I never thought I would have radon. I have my gym down there and spend about 2 hours a day in that space. I called one radon remediation company and the guy said I should wait until I have a 7 day average and told me not to stress too much that he has seen a reading in the 900’s and the family lived in the house for 70 years with no issues. I am still stressed. As home inspectors do you see many deaths from radon. I am petrified that I will develop lung cancer.

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I see them drop like flies! :grinning:

Seriously, I don’t think you’ll find any Home Inspectors that see any deaths from Radon. You might try the coroner’s office. Think about what you’ve asked. Some people are more susceptible to lung cancer than others. Not that it’s a good thing but some smokers never develop a fatal case of lung cancer. A host of other breathing difficulties but not cancer. Some, like myself and others simply quit smoking. My father smoked and played tennis and lived to be 98. (he did quit when I was young)

The only solace I can offer is that some people develop lung cancer and never smoked or were exposed to Radon. Good luck.

Some people think radon is healthy (not me but some people).

https://radonmine.com/

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Thank you… lol I should have clarified not actually watched them drop over but saw someone sell a house with a high reading and later down the line heard they died of lung cancer. Sorry… I rush when i am worried.

Exactly. Nowadays everyone drops from Covid!!

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First of all, those digital devices can be crap. Also, you need a professional to do a radon measurement. A drafty home can actually increase radon levels in your basement. You should hire a professional to evaluate your situation and do a proper test.

The EPA has tons of info on radon. This page actually has risk charts.

My advice, get a professional measurement. Then follow their advice while fully understanding your risks.

“Health Risk of Radon | US EPA” Health Risk of Radon | US EPA

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You should either do a long term test (90 to 180 days) to figure out the true level of radon or just buck up and spend the $800-$1500 to mitigate the radon.

*Disclaimer the price listed above is purely for a radon fan and some piping in the Denver market installed by a “radon mitigation company”. Your area may be different.

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I had a mitigation company come out today. Talking with him made me feel somewhat better. I live in PA and he said he has been working non stop with the real estate boom. Tons of older homes in my area where people lived for decades went up for sale and with these new sales came radon tests. He is sending me his proposal tonight… and can fit me in within 2 weeks.

I am sure he will be happy to install a system whether you need it or not. Once installed, you will need to test for radon again in 30 days. And not with that cheap home depot thingy that is likely not approved. Radon testing by a professional usually runs around $200 bucks.

I’d like to know more about your radon monitor. 67 is pretty high. I’m in MD and the highest I’ve seen is 24 pCi/L in 6 years. To give you an idea… I use fairly cheap, but trusted monitors. They are between $800 and $900 dollars.Radon gas is radioactive. Radiation does cause cancer, Like said above, I’d get it tested again with a professional, continuous radon monitor. Then go from there.

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Radon Mitigation companies will all tell you that Radon is the Number 2 cause of Lung Cancer. And I’m sure they can demonstrate that in a laboratory. The Number 1 cause of Lung Cancer is tobacco. With that being said, I don’t think anyone has Radon listed on their Death Certificate, and TONS of people have Tobacco listed on their Death Certificate. FEAR is a very valuable marketing tool for Radon Mitigation companies—and they use it! With all that being said, I don’t think Radon is a good thing and I don’t think it’s something to ignore, but it’s not really frightening either. As humans, we’re all naturally afraid of things that we can’t see that are going to kill us. My recommendation is get the Radon mitigated if you need to—and ALWAYS wear you seatbelt when you drive your vehicle (that’s a much more likely place to get killed by something you can’t, or don’t see). All the Best!

Neil,

This is the one i purchased.

I have kept the device plugged in for the last 8 days. My radon mitigation system gets installed next Thursday. The long term average continues to drop on this device. The first reading was 67.5 and currently the long term is at 33 and it seems every day it drops.

Brett,
I don’t know anything about that system. Never heard of it till now. Somet hings to look for in a professional radon monitor is “NRPP, C-NRPP and NRSB approved”. This means it’s been tested by these groups. I’d like to see it up against a factory calibrated professional unit and compare the two measurements.

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I guess a simple question is do you have your monitor set on the appropriate measuring mode. I know some can measure in both pCi/L or Bq/m3. The later will show very high ratings if your looking at a pCi/L scale. Something like 37/1 B to p…

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Agreed, but I do not think he is listening. The high measurement which dropped in half in a few days has him on edge. An EPA average is far different than a daily reading, especially on a device that is likely not approved.

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I just had the system put in yesterday. The mitigation contractor gave me a test to place in my basement for 3 days. I have that down there and kept my digital one plugged in. I do not know how long it should take for the mitigation to work but the digital one is still reading in the mid 20’s pCi/L its been about 30 hours of the system running… so i am def questioning the accuracy of that test.

Didn’t the radon mitigation company tell you to wait a day or so before starting the post-mitigation test?

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It’s running an average. Who knows what those parameters are because it is an over the counter machine. Wait for the mitigation company’s results. Even then, I recommend (as I did from the beginning) to have your radon levels tested by a radon measurement professional.

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You need to hire a Third Party professional to do an unbiased radon test. I’m sure you’ve been told this on this thread two or three times before.

In most states it is illegal for the company that installed the mitigation system to also perform a test after the system is installed.

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