If we all lived in tents, radon gas wouldn’t necessarily be a problem.
But, most of us don’t. Our sealed-up homes are great at keeping out rain, insects, and thieves, but they are also great at keeping radon in.
One question many people face when they decide to test their homes for radon is – “What type of monitor/device do I use?”
There are many devices out there, and most can be categorized into two groups: passive and continuous.
Although generally more expensive, continuous monitors come with a slew of benefits. Some of these benefits are magnified when these monitors are used in real estate transactions. When working to prevent cancer in your community, it is worth it to use the best devices to find out if a problem exists.
Benefits of Continuous Radon Monitors:
#1 – Hourly readings display an accurate portrait of the diurnal cycle of radon levels…and point out if something was amiss during the radon test.
Radon levels in a home are not steady and fluctuate daily based on factors such as temperature and opening windows. When a technician views hourly readings from a continuous radon monitor, they expect to see a wavy cycle that repeats every day, producing an average radon level for the home. If the radon level shows increases over the entire testing period, this points to several factors that might include house conditions where the doors and windows were not closed or to unusual weather conditions.
#2 – Additional readings are taken on the device besides radon levels.
Most continuous radon monitors are monitoring other things, such as barometric pressure, humidity, temperature, if the device was unplugged or lost power during the test, and if the device was tilted during the test. These readings add fine detail to the portrait of hourly radon levels and allow a technician to really see what was happening during the radon test. Was there a big storm that coincided with unusual radon levels? Was the monitor unplugged and moved during the test? Were all the windows left open and the temperature left to escalate uncontrolled? These are important things to know for finding out an accurate radon level for a home.
#3 – Anti-tampering is usually included.
As mentioned in #2, many of these devices register if they are unplugged or if they are tilted. In the case of real estate transactions, it is sometimes in the seller’s best interest that a low radon level be observed. In the case of a meddling seller, the technician will have clues on the report for whether the device was tampered with during the test. This may lead to a re-test of the home.
If you would like a more accurate radon test for your home, ask your local home inspector what type of radon device they use and investigate if it meets your standards. Prevention of cancer is key and having an accurate radon test is the first step in protecting your family and community.