You can't see or smell radon, but this silent and odorless gas poses a potential cancer-causing risk to your health. If you're an Oregon homeowner with questions about radon, you're not alone. How do you test your home? Is it at risk? Whether you're a current homeowner or in the market for a new one, this comprehensive guide will address your questions on radon testing and mitigation in Oregon to ensure your home remains a safe haven.
What is Radon?
Radon is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless radioactive gas that can seep into homes, impacting your indoor air quality, and posing a significant health risk. Radon is a naturally occurring gas formed by the decay of uranium in the soil. When released into the air, it can enter buildings through gaps in the foundation, cracks in walls, and other openings. Prolonged exposure to elevated radon levels is linked to an increased risk of lung cancer, making it essential for homeowners to be proactive in testing and mitigation.
How to Test for Radon
Testing for radon is a simple and cost-effective process. The two main types of tests are short-term and long-term. Short-term tests, which usually last between 2 and 7 days, are an excellent starting point for homeowners. Long-term tests extend over 90 days or more and provide a more comprehensive analysis of radon levels.
To test your home for radon, follow these steps:
- Select a Radon Test Kit
- Local & Online Retailers sell radon test kits around $15-$25.
- American Lung Association sells short/long-term radon test kits for $18/$30 (price includes shipping and lab analysis)
- Nonprofit Home Inspections offers a free radon test for qualifying low/moderate incomes.
- Oregon Health Authority offers a free short-term radon test for qualifying zip codes.
- Follow Instructions: Place the kit in the lowest livable area of your home, such as the basement or ground floor. Carefully read and follow the instructions provided with the specific test kit you selected.
- Retrieve Results: After the testing period, seal the kit and send it to the specified laboratory for analysis. Results are usually available within a few weeks.
View Your Risk Level by Zip Code
The Oregon Public Health Division recommends that all homes test for radon regardless of the risk level assigned to the home’s location.
Do you Qualify For a Short-Term Test Kit?
Follow these steps to see if you qualify for a free test kit from OHA:
- Open and view the Oregon Radon Risk Zip Code Table PDF
- You qualify for a free test kit if…
- Your zip code risk level has an *asterisk*
- Your zip code risk level is “Not Assigned”
- Your zip code is not listed (but is located in Oregon)
If you qualify, follow the instructions listed on the Oregon Health Authority’s Radon Risk in Oregon webpage.
If test results reveal elevated radon levels, mitigation is crucial. Radon mitigation systems can be installed to vent radon gas away from your home, preventing its accumulation. Qualified radon mitigation professionals can assess your specific situation and recommend an appropriate system.
Protecting your home and loved ones from the unseen threat of radon is a responsibility that every Oregon homeowner should take seriously. Regular testing, especially in high-risk areas, is the first step toward ensuring a safe and healthy living environment. By following these guidelines and seeking available resources, you can take proactive measures to mitigate radon exposure and create a safer home for you and your family.
Certified Radon Mitigation Companies
The following is a list of radon mitigation companies located in Oregon with at least one technician certified by the National Radon Proficiency Program or National Radon Safety Board. (This list is provided by the Oregon Health Authority for informational purposes only.)
- 3 Rs Construction / Salem
- Absolute Environmental / Portland
- Alpha Environmental Services, Inc. / Beaverton
- Cascade Radon, Inc. / Portland
- Environmental Works / Portland
- Evren Northwest, Inc. / Portland
- John’s Waterproofing / Salem, Beaverton, Eugene, Portland, Northern Costal Region
- JustRadon.com / Lake Oswego
- Soil Solutions Environmental Services, Inc. / Portland
- Xavier Environmental, Inc. / Portland
Our Commitment to You
Whether you're a current homeowner or in the market for a new property, our team is ready to provide guidance, connect you with resources, and help you navigate the steps needed to ensure your home is free from the risks associated with radon exposure. Your safety is our priority, and our commitment to your well-being goes beyond just buying or selling property; it extends to radon testing and mitigation in Oregon, ensuring that your home is a healthy environment for you and your family.