What is radon?
Radon is an invisible and odorless gas produced by the decay of the element radium. Radium is found in most rock, mostly in uraniumrich granite and alum shale. The spontaneous radioactive decay of radon forms so called radon daughters. These particles adhere to lung tissue where they continue to emit radiation. High radon levels indoors are a contributing factor to an increased risk for lung cancer.
Why is radon gas found in buildings?
Radon has little ability to bind to other substances and can easily penetrate into the buildings together with soil gas through cracks in the foundation. Radon concentration in soil gas can be very high. Soil gas seeps into buildings because the air pressure in the indoor air is often lower than in the ground.
Do I live in a radon home?
The only way to find out is to measure. Track-etch detectors is the recommended and most economical way to measure the radon concentration. Radon Measurements with film traces should be in winter over a period of at least two months. The result of a slot film measurement provides an average radon level over the measurement period.
How does radon affect my health?
Breathing air with high radon gas is proven health hazard. Radon and its progeny are produced by radioactive decay emits radiation. The most dangerous kind of radiation in this context are called alpha rays. These rays can damage the cells in our lung tissue, which can lead to transformation of healthy cells into cancer cells.
How big is the health risk?
The World Health Organization (WHO) says that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Only smoking represents a major health risk with respect to lung cancer. By ca. 1,800 new cases of lung cancer in Norway, due to between 100 and 300 of these radon in indoor air. It must also be emphasized that these are the vast majority of smokers. The risk increases with radon levels and residence time. If one example. live in a house with a radon concentration of 1000 Bq / m³, the risk of lung cancer is the same as an average smoker.
Which radon level is safe?
NRPA recommends that radon levels are kept as low as possible in all buildings, and that action should be performed when the radon level in one or more living exceeds 100 Bq/m3. Radiation Protection emphasizes that measures may also be appropriate under 100 Bq/m3 if as simple measures could have radon levels significantly lower. Also recommends NRPA Now that radon levels must always be less than a maximum limit of 200 Bq/m3. Radiation Protection Authority considers that buildings as workplaces, schools, commercial buildings and rental homes should be required to have proper radon levels through legislation. It is estimated that up to ca. 170,000 Norwegian housing may have radon concentrations higher than 200 Bq / m³.
Is radon present in my drinking water and is this dangerous?
High radon concentrations occurring in the water from wells drilled in the rock. Risks by drinking radon-containing water is normally small, but depends upon the concentration of radon in the water. Top radon levels in indoor air can have radon from water as a contributing cause. NRPA has set an action level of 500 Bq / l You can take a sample of your drinking water by following our instructions. Then send the sample to us. You get a response within a few days.
What is track-etch detectors?
track-etch utilizes the large energy of the alpha rays, which, when they hit some materials leave traces (microscopic damage). Our laboratory using plastics of the type CR-39 track recording. By means of chemical treatment, these tracks are magnified and counted under the microscope. Number of tracks per unit area is proportional to the amount of radon in the air.
How is radon measured with track-etch detectors?
To test for radon, it is recommended to use at least two films per track. residential unit. You can book traces film radonlab.com / track film and get it in the mail. Instructions and a return envelope included with the course. Track films deploys you to follow instructions. It is recommended to measure in all the rooms where you spend a lot (living room, bedroom, basement room, hobby room). To return the exposed track videos after the measurement period (usually a minimum of 2 months in the winter months) is over. After the analysis is completed, you will receive a report with test results. Measurement results are treated confidentially by Radonlab.
Why long-term radon tests?
Radon Level indoors can vary a great deal over time (hours, days, weeks). The variations may be due to differences in temperature, ventilation conditions, winds and other climatic conditions. It is important to measure the average radon level for a long time because it is this value which is important for health. It is common to use track film for long term radon test (over two months). Radon testing should ideally be performed during the winter. Winter Value multiplied by 0.75 to get the annual mean value used for evaluation of the need for action against radon gas. The best choice of the measurement period, however, from mid-summer to mid-winter (or vice versa), ie over 6 months. The result of such a measurement is very close to the annual mean value.
When can I measure over shorter time periods?
Decorate the basement, or for other reasons simply can not wait for 2 months? Then you can make an indicative measurement of trace film over shorter time. You can use our tracks films to measure over 20 days or longer. Do you have even less time, then you must use our electronic radon monitors . The cheapest electronic meters that can be used over a long time Canary radon monitor and Ramon 2.2 . Remember that radon concentrations vary widely and therefore can not calculate the annual mean from a short-term measure. Such measurements can in most cases provide an indication of elevated radon levels in individual rooms or places where radon seep. Such measurements are made in connection with the testing of measures against radon, but can not replace tracks film measurements.
Radim 5 and Radon Scout - when can I use these devices?
Radim 5B and Radon Scout is logging instruments in the price range that has very good precision, features, and low energy consumption. Batteries last up to 6 months. The instruments record hourly values. They work by diffusion, without pump and therefore without any noise. Windows software is included.
RAD7, RTM 2100 and 1688 - what are these devices for?
RAD7 is very solid professional equipment for continuous measurement of radon with fast response, high accuracy and many opportunities. The enhancement can be used for measurement of radon in water and in soil. The instrument measures both radon and thoron, and can be used for quick sniffing. Briefcase, mini printer and Windows software included. For more information see here.
RTM1668 is a new instrument in the middle price range that meets most requirements for short-term radon measurement. The instrument is supplied with air dryer that significantly increased sensitivity, which enables quick measurements. Thermal Printer can be connected directly to RTM 1688 (optional). Windows software is included. For more information see here.
RTM2100 are professional equipment that is particularly well protected against external influences and can be used in all weather conditions both outside and inside. With additional equipment can be used for measurement of radon in water and in the building ground. Windows software is included. For more information see here.
Where can I find more information about continuous radon measurement?
Which radon measures should I take?
It is impossible to give advice that would suit any building. Measures solutions must be adapted to each building. Yet experience has shown that moderately elevated radon levels can often be prevented by relatively simple measures. In buildings where radon concentrations are between 200 and 400 Bq/m3, housing owner try to reduce radon levels with some simple steps:
1. Interior sealing of air leaks in floor and foundation walls and around pipes and cable ducts.
2. Improving the ventilation of indoor air in a timely manner will also help to reduce radon levels. If the radon level in the building exceeds 200 Bq/m3 technical assistance should be sought for appropriate measures can be selected. You can book consulting with us which includes some observations and action plan for your building. Radonlab also performs complete radon surveys on building construction .
Can I get government grants for radon measures?
Housing Bank subsidy has ceased as of 2004. For details call the Housing Bank (tel. 815 33 370).
Sealing - does it help?
Interior sealing of air leaks in floor and foundation walls and around pipes and cable ducts can reduce radon ingress. It is recommended to use elastic sealers (such as Sikaflex etc.) to withstand movement, particularly for sealing cracks around pipes and floor / wall transitions. Aging of materials is also important. If lightweight aggregate blocks are used in the foundations of the sealing of all leaks can be very difficult because the blocks are porous and can transport radon.
MINI VENT - when can I use it?
Balanced ventilation reduces the pressure inside and is a good solution to high radon levels. Radon Labs MINI VENT system is a little ventilation system effectively reduces radon levels in the air, improve air quality and using the built-in heat exchanger saves energy. Mini Vent system combines low noise and power efficient fans with highly efficient heat recovery. The system is based on the exchange of air flow direction through an accumulator (heat exchanger) made of corrugated aluminum. Indoor air is blown out in 30 seconds and heat exchanger warms up. Then pull fresh air into the same amount of time. The cold air is heated as it flows through the heat exchanger. When two such devices are connected (dual mode) and airflow in the units have always opposite direction, air pressure balance. This is particularly beneficial when it comes radon decontamination. MINI VENT available in four variants: Lunos, Alfa quiet, Lossnay, and Air Green. For more details please see here.
RADONSUG - what is it?
The effect of a radonsug is based on changing the air pressure difference between the indoor air and the air in the ground. It is desirable that the pressure in the ground is lower than the pressure inside, so that radon gas from penetrating into the building. This is achieved by installing an electric fan (50 - 100 W) through a pipe sucks the air from the ground and transfers it through the outer wall. For optimal function, it is important that the tubes and conducting tubes are gas-tight. Rigid plastic pipe often works best. For a radon well to work well, there must be a permeable layer (such as gravel) below the concrete slab. The area around the building should be covered with relatively dense masses eg. soil or clay.
Where can I find more information on measures against radon gas?
We recommend our radon courses held several times each year. For more information read here ...