Vancouver Island has Radon gas. It is in the ground, the water and it can get trapped in our homes. When uranium breaks down it creates a radioactive gas, the gas is odourless, colourless and tasteless.
This gas is called Radon and it is the second leading cause of lung cancer in Canada.
When radon gas leaks out of the earth, it becomes diluted by the air. Unfortunately if it finds its way into your home it can get trapped inside the interior and accumulate, this is when radon gas can become very dangerous. One home might have very low radon levels while the home next door may have dangerously high radon levels.
Exposing yourself to high levels of radon gas is a significant health risk. As per Health Canada, radon gas data provides evidence that approximately 16 percent of all lung cancer deaths in Canada are from unaware people exposing themselves. That makes radon gas the second leading cause of lung cancer in Canada.
Radon gas can enter our homes from the:
- Earth, ground, soil
- Basements and crawlspaces
- Concrete (porous)
- Cracks in foundations, floors and walls
- Loose pipes
- Floor drains and sump pumps
- Joints between the framing
- Ground water, high water tables, wells
How do we measure Radon gas?
Radon gas is measured in becquerels, it is a scientific unit used to measure radioactive levels. The British Columbia guideline for radon states that a home should not contain more than 200 units of becquerels per cubic metre (200 Bq/m3).
What do we do?
The home inspector will set up a short term radon test kit during the home inspection. The client is responsible for collecting the sample between 48 and 96 hours post inspection. You will be provided with a pre-paid, pre-addressed envelope with priority shipping to the laboratory. The sample must be systematically collected and shipped immediately after. Laboratory results are typically available in 3 to 5 days after collection.
Yes! we have Radon gas on Vancouver Island
“You will be provided with a pre-paid, pre-addressed envelope with priority shipping to the laboratory”
Short term radon test kit guidelines
Specific conditions are required for best results. Exterior doors and windows must be kept closed except for normal entry and exit. The short term radon test kit cannot be touched or moved during the first 48 hours and it must be collected before 96 hours otherwise the results are invalid. The home inspector is not responsible for any tampering during the testing period.
Short term vs long term radon gas tests
There is short term and long term radon tests. A short term test can last anywhere between 2 – 4 days, alternatively long term radon testing can last as long as 365 days. Radon gas levels can vary depending on type of construction, time of year and or weather conditions. Long term testing provides a more accurate reading with seasonal exposure. Health Canada recommends long term testing.
Lowering Radon gas levels in a typical home may cost between $1000 and $3000 dollars. Radon gas testing is available in Nanaimo, Ladysmith, Parksville, Qualicum, Port Alberni, Ucluelet, Tofino, Comox, Courtenay, Campbell River, Port Hardy and surrounding areas.