GREENSBORO, NC -- Testing for Radon can be done for as little as $8 and as much as $200. What's the difference besides price? 2 Wants To Know lists the pros and cons of each. The NC threshold for Radon level is a 4. Anything 4 or above is considered dangerous and in need of mitigation.
Radon System Canister (RSC)
Consumer Reports tested Do It Yourself tests and found the Radon System Canister the most reliable. It costs $50 for the test and that includes the shipping back to the lab and the testing itself.
The Airchek came in second for Consumer Reports. It is just $8 and is usually available at home improvement stores. Again, you will ship it off to get results.
DIY Testing & State Help
With both of the DIY tests, you must follow the directions exactly. A minor change can affect the accuracy of the tests.
The state offers do it yourself kits as well. They have a Radon Program page you can check out. The recommendation is to use the long term test which is $8. Also, they suggest doing one of the DIY tests first. If the results come back with a three or higher, then pay for the professional test.
The Professional Radon Test
Home inspectors and Radon testing companies can charge anywhere from $100 - $200. It is pricey, but the findings are more detailed, and instant and there shouldn't be any operator error.
What To Know About All The Tests
They take several days, as in two to seven. In that time, your windows must remain closed, no fans can be in use in the house, the tests can't be moved or bumped.
Mitigation: How To Get Rid Of Radon
Mitigation is a fancy way of saying you suck the bad air out and ventilate it outside. A mitigation system includes PVC pipes, a fan, a and guttering.
Home Inspector Scott Dampier shows you the one in his home. The radon reading in his house was a 10! A system costs anywhere from $800 - $2500. His advice, the company that does the radon test should not be the company that puts in your system. Always have a third party so you know you're getting what you need and not paying for what you don't.
Why can't you simply just open up your windows and let the Radon out? Scott says you could lessen the Radon gas, but you would have to keep the windows open ALL the time. When it's 85 degrees and when it's 20 degrees. He says, most of us won't do that.