Radon Testing for your Home


When you are in the process of buying a home, you will have the option with the inspection to add a radon test.  Is it worth the extra cost?
Our agent Cori Baumann spoke with the inspectors with AAI Inspections to learn more about Radon and wanted to share with us all this month as it is Radon Awareness month.

1. First, What is Radon?

Radon is a radioactive gas released from the normal decay of uranium in rocks and soil. It is an invisible, odorless, tasteless gas that seeps up through the ground.  Many people do not know that it is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. When in the open out of doors, Radon gas usually exists at very low levels. However, go inside to  areas without adequate ventilation (like your basement) and that radon can accumulate to levels that become unsafe and increases the risk of lung cancer. 

Southern Michigan is an area where Radon is naturally occurring, and Jackson is no exception. Every home will likely have some Radon level show up on a test, so it is important to know if in your home it is at a safe level.

2. How can I tell if my home is safe?

Well, really to  know if your home is safe, testing is the best way to know if your home has elevated radon levels. Since you cannot see, taste or smell it, there is no other way to detect it.  Indoor radon levels are affected by the soil composition under and around the house, as well as how easily it can enter the building.  If your neighbor has a high level, you may not! Homes that are next door to each other can have different indoor radon levels.  Some other factors are precipitation, barometric pressure, etc that can cause radon levels to vary from month to month or day to day.  That variance is why at home kits and home inspectors offer  both short- and long-term tests.  Short-term detectors measure radon levels for 2 days to 90 days, depending on the device. Long-term tests determine the average concentration for more than 90 days. 

During the month of January, you can get a Radon kit at a discount as low as $5 or for FREE, depending on your county!   So call your county to find out and get yours! Our friends at AAI Inspections recommend getting 2 test kits, to get a more accurate result.

3. Can I get a certified Radon test?

YES! Most Home Inspectors have a quality Radon test they can conduct for you at an added cost to the standard inspection.  Here is how AAI Inspection describes their radon testing:

“To measure the level of Radon in your home we use industry leading Sun Nuclear CRM (Continuous Radon Monitor) systems to accurately test your radon levels, hour-by-hour, for a period of 48 hours. Our CRM systems are EPA verified, NEHA-NRPP evaluated and approved by the NRSB (National Radon Safety Board) for use in real estate transaction testing. 

The use of a CRM has important benefits over the DIY Radon test kits found at your local Health department or hardware store. 

  1. Fast results.  Do it yourself test kits require that you mail the test canister into the lab for analysis, sometimes waiting weeks for your results.  With our service you will have results in about 48 hours.
  2. Detect tampering.  DIY kits provide an overall average.  Our hour-by-hour monitoring provides peace of mind that the monitor hasn’t been tampered with during the testing period.
  3. Quality Assurance.  In accordance with our certification requirements our CRMs must be annually calibrated by a 3rd party which are NIST traceable and L-A-B accredited (Cert. # L2444) to ensure their accuracy, and your peace of mind. 

4. What if I have unsafe levels of Radon in my home!?

Don’t panic. A radon mitigation system can be installed in your home to make it safe. If the levels are high in a home you are looking to purchase, this can be a point to negotiate with the seller on the costs for a mitigation system.  Use a trusted contractor or inspector to install and measure the results.

Bottom Line

Radon is an odorless gas that you want to make sure are not at dangerous levels in your home.  Be sure to check it out, get a test and mitigate if needed.  

We hope you found this information helpful, as always, we are here to inform our buyers and sellers in everything dealing with a home 🙂

Connect with an Agent today! 517-788-8733. Let’s make your NEXT move, your BEST move!


AAI Inspection – 517-206-2811

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