Radon Air Purifier Filter and a Detector For Your Home
Radon is a real serious potential problem for your health. It is invisible. Odorless. Radioactive. It can cause lung cancer. Common questions about it include, “How do I know if there’s radon in my home?” “What radon levels are considered bad?” “What’s the best radon air purifier / filter?” “When should I hire a professional?”
Does an air purifier filter even work for radon? My research says yes, to an extent. However an air filter for radon should not be your permanent fix to reduce or eliminate radon gas in your home.
What kind of air purifier works to remove radon from the environment?
The best air filter / purifier for radon in your home must have an activated carbon filter. It’s the only kind of air filter that can catch radon gas.
Important – Air filters aren’t as good as “radon reduction systems”. If you have a serious problem with radon, consult a radon specialist.
Radon Air Purifier With Activated Carbon Filter
It is the carbon that soaks up the radon. Just be sure your air purifier of choice has activated carbon as part of its overall filtration. The more the better.
There are many very good reasons to run an air purifier in your home. I do.
Have you ever been sitting there with the sun streaming into the room “just right” so you could see all of the dust (and other) particles floating in the air?! It can be surprising!
[ Read: What is a HEPA Air Filter and Which is Best? ]
Continue below for a great radon detector for your home. I have this one, and it sure provides peace of mind.
How do you know if there is radon in the house?
First, know your risk. Look at a map of the United States which shows color-coded Risk Zones 1, 2, and 3 (the highest risk for radon). You can also view greater resolution radon maps of individual states, sourced from EPA.gov
The only conclusive way to know if there’s radon in your home is to test the air. There are a number of ways to do this. You can hire a professional. Or you can buy a test kit which you send to a lab afterwards. And now there is a home radon detector that you can leave on all the time (developed in Norway by a spin off of CERN of Geneva, Switzerland).
What is Radon Gas and Why should I be concerned?
According to EPA estimates, radon is the number one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. Overall, radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Radon is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths every year. About 2,900 of these deaths occur among people who have never smoked.
Radon comes from the natural (radioactive) breakdown of uranium in soil, rock and water and gets into the air you breathe. Radon can be found all over the U.S. It can get into any type of building—homes, offices, and schools—and result in a high indoor radon level. But you and your family are most likely to get your greatest exposure at home, where you spend most of your time.
Nearly 1 out of every 15 homes in the U.S. is estimated to have elevated radon levels.
What Radon Levels Are Bad?
The EPA recommends that you should consider fixing if radon levels are between 2 and 4 pCi/L. However your really must fix if levels are above 4 pCi/L.
They also say that reducing radon levels below 2 pCi/L is difficult.
The average indoor radon level is 1.3 pCi/L.
The average outdoor radon level is 0.4 pCi/L.
Radon Detector for your home
Traditionally, consumers only had two options: call a professional to test their radon levels, or purchase a single-use charcoal test which was then sent to a lab for the results.
However I’ve discovered a radon detector product line from a company with scientists working together at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research). Their mission, “to offer accurate, user-friendly radon detectors to the masses, making them as common as smoke detectors.”
Theirs is my personal choice. Rather than spending money on one-time tests, I prefer the continuous “always on” radon detector from a product I trust. I am comfortable with its design, manufacture, and method of detecting and quantifying radon gas in the home.
Interesting article Ken. To market our home my state requires radon water and air testing, test results are reported tom the state government. We tested and had both water and air (basement air) results that exceeded standard. Once reported the home owner has to mitigate the air and water to passing. For us, we had an independent company install air mitigation, basement cement floor has a 4-5 inch hole bored and pc piped above the roof line powered by a continuous outdoor blower to exhaust the ground/underground radon gas.
Water mitigation involved a 55 gallon tank piped into our well water after the well holding tank, water then flows from the well holding tank into the radon tand and is aireated (sp?) as it enters the radon tank, radon gas goes out the pvc radon air pipe-sucked out by the radon air blower. The radon water tank has a 6 gallon per minute well pump with low and full tank sensors, uouse water pressure is 55 to 60 pounds. The water inlet has two filters, one 5 micron for any drilled well sediment, radon water tank outlet has a large 1 micron filtDr. And we have a water softener system after theradon water system, with a two foot tall wall mounted filter. About $6,000
So, looked for another house for 2 years, market was and still is stupidly over priced for houses that are a handyman’s dream (thanks to people running away from cities). Decided not to move, will when too old to take care of the place. Least the air and water are “to standard”, just more yearly maintenance and cost, never ends.
Thanks for the info. With winter weather, most homes are closed up with little fresh air exchange and toxins can build up.
I hadn’t thought about radon until we ALMOST bought a beautiful little house in Wallace, Idaho, where radon testing is required. During the home inspection, the radon levels in the basement were found to be 21pCi/L! The inspector would not allow anyone into the house nor continue the inspection until a fresh air fan was installed to evacuate the stale basement air. His recommendation was an expensive basement forced air venting system.
I like the idea of a continuous radon monitor and it would be interesting to see how the levels change with the seasons (open windows vs closed) and if certain rooms were prone to having higher levels.
Have been in our N. Ohio home for a while now. Noticed the radon mitigation system thru the basement when we purchased the place and got one of the Corentium meters shortly after that. Have noticed that once or twice we will get a spike for a day or less of up to I guess 15 or 18 pci/L, then right back down to less than 2 pci/l. These spikes usually show up spring and fall when the heavy rains come for some reason. Was wondering if maybe the gasses are being forced out of the ground by the water soaking into the earth?
For anybody interested, the (3AA) batteries in the Corentium meter do actually last for 3 years. So it isnt drawing much of anything power wise. We leave the meter in different areas in the basement and monitor it when we go down there. Just a quick check when we pass by. It cycles between 1 day and 7 day readings every 15 seconds or so and gives a constant long term average reading in the large numbers at the upper portion of the screen.
As long as the radon is mitigated it really should not be a concern other than your due-dilligence in educating yourself about it. From what I understand it really is everywhere. I have not had any problem with the fans (2) on my system and they have been installed and running 24/7 365 for 8 years and running. Now if that doesnt cause one or both to fail, I dont know what will. LOL
I can say for me personally that ozone air filters give me an instant headache. Not sure if the above are related to that or not.
I would be much more comfortable with a standalone radon detector than a proprietary test from the company that also does the remediation…
We had a company come to us, tell us that we “must” do radon testing, blah, blah, blah. They would provide the test, which they would send to their labs, and tell us if we needed their services.
Right. Sounds similar to somebody with a baseball bat coming to my door and saying I have broken windows, then offering to fix them for a price.
Since radon is an alpha emitter, most people disregard it’s low dose particle effect as dangerous. As an internal dose, via the lungs, a single alpha particle through cell nuclei is highly mutagenic. Internal alpha radiation may have a higher mutagenic effect at low doses than predicted by the linear exposure model. This is due to the particle’s high energy of about 5Mev discharging over it’s short specific ionization path.
Not so sure,
Where you are really screwed with radon is if you are a smoker. They showed that with the uranium miners. Seems smokers have tar in their lungs that radon bonds with, a big radon trap in the soft tissues. Same with radon in homes of smokers. Yes. As I said earlier, you do need a way to measure alpha, that way you can guard against inhalation or ingestion .
I recall back when radon gas first became a concern. Reporting said that it has always been present, naturally emanating from the soil, but had never been considered a problem until modern construction practices geared toward making homes air-tight for greater energy efficiency. By limiting the exchange of outside air and indoor air, radon gas was more likely to be allowed to concentrate in living areas.
People were told that if they lived in older, less energy efficient homes, radon would most likely not be an issue for them.
Would be interesting if one of the followers who lives in a high radon county, and has a meter, would test inside their home…then outside in a less sealed off structure and share the comparison of readings.
The most effective way you to take when radon testing reveals its presence is to have a radon system installed in your home.
Regular testing and a working radon mitigation system should be in place for your safety.