Whether you’re moving into a new home, doing renovations, evaluating your home’s current condition, or selling it, there’s one important action item you should include on your to-do list: testing your house’s radon levels.
Radon is an invisible, odorless, and tasteless gas that naturally occurs in the air we breathe. In homes, buildings, or areas with less ventilation, radon can build up, increasing people’s exposure to the gas.
When you breathe in radon, radon breaks down very quickly, leading to many radioactive particles in your lungs. Over time, prolonged exposure to high levels of radon and radiation from these particles may damage the DNA in the cells that line your lungs, leading to lung cancer.
While there is no “safe” level of radon exposure, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends that if your home has radon levels of 4.0 picocuries per liter (pCi/L), that you take action. This level is the equivalent of smoking eight cigarettes a day. The EPA also recommends considering taking action for radon levels between 2 pCi/L and 4 pCi/L. Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers, and is the second-leading cause of lung cancer among those who smoke.
The EPA estimates one in 15 Arizona homes has high radon levels. Due to the natural makeup of the Arizona rock and soil, the state has high levels of elements that lead to radon.
The Arizona Department of Health Services’ Indoor Radon Surveillance Program is available to help you protect yourself and your loved ones. In the past ten years, ADHS has distributed more than 4,000 free radon testing kits to the public.
Visit the new Radon Surveillance section for informational and testing resources you can use to help protect yourself and your loved ones.
Request a free radon test for your home today. If your home does test high for radon levels, the Bureau of Radiation Control offers professional remediation resources that can help you lower the level of radon in your home.