How Does Radon Enter My Home?

Radon is a radioactive gas. It comes from the natural decay of uranium that is found in nearly all soils. It typically moves up through the ground to the air above, then into your home through cracks and other openings in the foundation. Your home traps radon inside, where radon levels can build up. Any home may have radon problems. This means new and old homes, well-sealed and drafty homes, and homes with or without basements.

Radon from soil is the main cause of elevated radon levels but sometimes radon in homes may enter through well water. And in a small number of cases, home building materials can even give off radon. However, building materials rarely cause radon problems by themselves. Some of the more common ways Radon can enter your home include: cracks in solid floors, construction joints, cracks in walls, gaps in suspended floors, gaps around service pipes, cavities inside walls, and the water supply.

How does radon enter home?

It has been estimated that nearly 1 out of every 15 homes in the U.S. have elevated radon levels. Elevated levels of radon in homes have been found in every state. Contact your state radon office for general information about radon problems in your area. The EPA maintains a list of radon information contacts for each state on their web site.

While problems with radon in home may be more common in some areas, any home may have a problem. The only way to know for certain is to use a radon test kit.

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