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Radon Testing

High levels of radon are found throughout Multnomah and Clark County.

Radon is second only to smoking as a leading cause of lung cancer. It is estimated that radon is responsible for over 21,000 lung cancer deaths each year.  The presence of radon in your home can pose a serious danger to your family's health. Fortunately, testing for radon could not be any easier. So is the ability to reduce radon levels within your home. Live Healthy and Green.

The Clark County, WA Health Department emphatically supports Radon testing: “Residents urged to test their homes for radon. Radon levels are believed to vary throughout Clark County WA, with higher levels expected in areas bordering the Columbia River. Because of these varying radon levels, we encourage all residents to get their homes tested.”

The U.S. Surgeon General and EPA recommend that all homes be tested for radon.

That’s where we come in. Associated Inspection Firm performs short term initial radon testing for real estate transactions.

In Oregon and Washington where high levels of radon have been found, there are various ways to test for it, including do-it-yourself kits. Associated Inspection Firm distinguishes itself by testing for Radon with state of the art radon testing equipment (CRM) continuous radon monitor. Rather than using radon testing charcoal canisters that require laboratory analyses, our radon monitor will produce immediate results following the radon test, eliminating waiting for radon test results to come back from a laboratory. Our radon test report will show hourly radon levels and give an accumulative average radon level over the period of the test. This easy to read and understand radon report also displays the radon levels in a graph form. We choose this type of high tech monitor for two key reasons: First, with the possibility of current occupants disturbing the testing device, the monitor will detect any movement or disturbance during the test. This sensitivity helps ensure accuracy. Second, with the limited time in a real estate transaction, we can typically get radon test results within 48 hours.

What is Radon and why is it harmful?

Radon forms naturally from the radioactive decay of Uranium in rock, soil, and water.  Radon is emitted as a cancer-causing natural radioactive gas that you can’t see, smell or taste. When radon decays it produces radioactive particles that are inhaled then trapped in the lungs and damage tissue. Elevated, unsafe levels have been found throughout Clark and Multnomah County.

Radon causes no immediate, detectable health symptoms. Over time, however, exposure to high levels of radon increases a person's risk of developing lung cancer. Lung cancer is currently the only known health effect. For someone who smokes this lung cancer risk is even higher. It takes many years of exposure to radon before the onset of lung cancer. The higher the exposure, the greater the risk of lung cancer and the sooner it may occur.

How does Radon get into my home?

When radon gas is formed, it migrates through the soil to the air above and into your home where it becomes trapped allowing the radon to rise to unsafe levels. Radon enters Portland and Vancouver homes through existing cracks in concrete floors or walls, open soil in crawl spaces, improperly or poorly sealed floor drains, or where pipes enter through floors. Without significant ventilation and air exchange in crawl spaces or under concrete floors, radon builds up and enters the living spaces of homes and other structures. Radon is found in varying concentrations throughout the United States with moderate to high levels found in Oregon and Washington.

What if high levels of Radon are found and how much does radon mitigation cost?

Reducing radon levels within your home is actually quite simple; however it should be performed by a radon mitigation company that specializes in reducing radon levels. There are various ways to mitigate the problem: one way is to prevent radon from entering the home, another is to reduce the radon level once it is there.

Generally, the radon mitigation process includes installing a small, quiet fan that creates suction under a thick, sealed, plastic barrier in the crawlspace and vents the radon gasses out from under the home. Homes with basements or built on a concrete slab are more susceptible to high radon levels. In this case all of the cracks and crevices are sealed. Then a hole is put in the slab to install the small fan and create sub-slab suction. The average Radon mitigation cost in Portland, Oregon, or Vancouver, Washington is between $800 to $2,500 with an average of $1,200. Generally, the fan system requires little to no maintenance once installed.

How much radon is too much radon?

We have tested hundreds of homes throughout Portland and Vancouver for radon, while we inform you of the levels found, we have to rely on the government agencies that perform the scientific tests and laboratory studies. Currently the EPA recommends that homes be fixed if the average level is 4 pCi/L (pico Curies per Liter) or higher. Because there is no known safe level of exposure to radon, if levels are found between 2-4pCi/L, you should consider radon mitigation. It can often be difficult to reduce levels below 2pCi. The average radon concentration in the indoor air is about 1.3. The average outdoor air is 0.4

Call or email the professionals at Associated Inspection Firm. Live Healthy and Green, test for radon today.

Information on this page is provided in conjunction with the EPA, CDC, Oregon Health Department and the Clark County, WA Health Department.