Frequently Asked Questions
What is Radon?
Radon is a radioactive gas that occurs naturally when the uranium in soil and rock breaks down. It is invisible, odourless and tasteless.
What are the Health Risks?
When radon is released from the ground into the outdoor air, it is diluted and is not a concern. However, in enclosed spaces like homes, it can sometimes accumulate to high levels.
Long term exposure to high levels of radon in indoor air results in an increased risk of developing lung cancer. The risk of cancer depends on the level of radon and how long a person is exposed to those levels (Information Courtesy Health Canada).
Radon gas breaks down or decays to form radioactive elements that can be inhaled into the lungs. In the lungs, decay continues, creating radioactive particles that release small bursts of energy. This energy is absorbed by nearby lung tissue, damaging the lung cells. When cells are damaged, they have the potential to result in cancer when they reproduce.
How does it get into my home?
Radon gas enters the home in any area where the house contacts the ground soil. This includes cracks in the foundation walls & floor, gaps around pipes, support posts, window casements, and floor or sump drains.
Seriously, how important is it to get my home tested?
Very!! Radon gas is the second leading cause of lung cancer, responsible for 16% of lung cancer occurrences in Canada. For smokers, the combined risk with high Radon levels is even greater.
How does a Radon test work?
The Radon test kit is set up in a carefully selected location in your home for a specific period of time. Health Canada recommends a minimum testing period of 3 months.
The Radon test kit is sent to a government certified lab to determine the average annual level of radon gas in your home, and a confidential report is delivered to you with your test results.
What is the cost for a Radon test?
The cost for a radon test is only $50.
What are Health Canada’s guidelines for Radon levels?
Health Canada recommends that the average annual Radon level should not exceed 200 Bq/cubic metre.
Does it matter what time of year the Radon test is done?
Not necessarily, but in the prairies, it’s generally a good practice to test during the months from October to April.
Are certain geographic regions more dangerous than others?
Different soil conditions affect Radon levels, but generally all of Western Canada is considered a “hot spot” for Radon gas.
Does the age of my home affect the Radon levels?
No. Radon concentrations can vary from home to home. Next door neighbours may have completely different levels of Radon.
What do I do if my Radon levels are high?
Don’t panic. If your test results are high, Health Canada recommends that you undertake mitigation or remediation plan to reduce the Radon levels.
A mitigation professional certified with the Canadian National Radon Proficiency Program will determine the best course of action based on your specific home. There is no “one size fits all” solution, so the mitigation plan may range from simply sealing foundation cracks to installing a small de-pressurization pump for the area beneath your concrete basement slab.
Where can I find a Radon Mitigation professional?
You’ve come to the right place. Sun Ridge’s mitigation experts are available to develop your mitigation plan, or provide contracted mitigation system installations.
Where can I learn more, O Radon guru??
Here are a few great options:
Health Canada website: www.healthcanada.gc.ca/radon
Lung Association of Saskatchewan website: www.sk.lung.ca/protect-your-lungs/radon
Take Action on Radon Canada wesbite: www.takeactiononradon.ca