How to Improve Radon Test Results

Hey Readers,

Occasionally, I’ll take a look at the types of internet searches that bring folks to this page. I’ve recently noticed some people who found via a search similar to the title of today’s post. ‘How do I improve a radon test?’

My first thought was one of shock. On the surface it appears someone may be looking for ways to make their radon levels test better than they actually are.If that is the case, then these individuals should be ashamed of themselves. The deception alone, is troubling, but the person(s) would also be risking the health of people who might unknowingly be moving into a home with elevated radon levels.

Yes, there are ways that people can “alter” the results of a radon test. However, things people might try, such as opening windows and turning on attic fans can actually INCREASE the radon levels in a home. Most attempts to lower the radon test levels are pretty easy to spot by the trained radon technician, and nearly impossible if the technician is using a continuous electronic monitor. These machines are capable of detecting attempts to tamper with the testing. If you are having a radon test run during a real estate transaction, I would highly recommend finding an inspector who uses the continuous electronic monitors for this very reason.

So…If you suspect that you may have elevated radon levels in your home, the right way to improve your next radon test, is to have a radon mitigation system installed in the home. In most cases, these systems are relatively low costs ($800-$1500), are considered a home improvement, have the added benefit of improving the indoor air quality in general (vents soil gases outside), and usually lowers the radon level in the home below 2.0 pCi/L. You’ll also be able to sleep better at night knowing you did the right thing as opposed to trying to alter test results.

Mark Nahrgang is the owner of Kingdom Inspection Network Group – St. Louis and is a professional NACHI certified building inspector in the St. Louis metro area. Mark performs home inspections as well as commercial inspections throughout St. Louis and St. Charles County.


14 Responses

  1. I agree totally.

  2. Radon mitigation should be a buyers option to pay for, if the owner has lived their over 5 years and did without. After mitigation, the home still has high levels, the radon monitor can and will be tweaked to show passing levels.

  3. you should in no way try to ‘cheat’ the meter, and I know that when i bought my home I made the seller of the home pay for my test!

  4. My partner and I stumbled over here from a different web page and thought I might check
    things out. I like what I see so now i am following you.
    Look forward to going over your web page repeatedly.

  5. Hi mark,

    I am not looking to cheat the system, but I did hear that if you are no longer living in the house or if you have been out of the house for some time (example vacation) where the doors and windows are kept closed then the results can end up high when that is not the reality of day to living in the home. Is this true or just a rumor? I am no longer living in the home but requested notice of when the test would occur so I could open doors and windows for a time to circulate air (up until 12 hours per epa guidelines). Again I’m not trying to cheat, but I don’t want to make it appear as though there is a problem when there isn’t.

  6. I had a passive radon mitigation vent that the inspector blocked when he did the test. Isn’t this dirty pool the other way?

  7. Radon testing is crap. It is way for people to make money (installers and testers). You would have to spend 24 hours a day in your basement for years to be impacted.

  8. The people who started blaming radon for issues, are the same people who blame global warming on cattle belching! Sure, if you’re a lab rat, and have the gas pumped into your cells 24 hours a day at 100 times the normal amount present on the earh, then you’re gonna get cancer… there is more concern for cancer and brain tumors from people running around with their cell phones glued to their ears (which emit radiation), and walking around outside with thousands of high frequency radio signals passing through their bodies every day. The crappy food you eat from the grocery store contains a thousand more harmful substances than radon. We have been breathing radon since the dawn of man. And I grew up in coal mining country, we had root cellars, dug basements and all my people lived to their late 90’s. You’d best blame the cancer on other things, like what you’re eating that ‘s processed by the government-controlled crops, like spreading human waste on them, and then you eating it …

  9. Utterly indited subject matter, regards for entropy.

  10. You guys are so full of it. Oh yeah you say the best way to save your health is to give me 1500 bucks and I’ll run done pvc up the side of your house to midigate something that’s not there or even proven to be a health hazard. What a scam. Any one who actually read the bear vi studies know this is fraud. You all should be ashamed and find an honest living instead of scaring people in paying u all for nothing. What a fraud.

  11. Radon is an example created scam, scientists hired by the epa debunked their own theory and were hushed until more paid scientists agreed. Radon levels and lung cancer have an inverse relationship.. Radon rises and lung cancer decreases.. The multi billion dollar radon industry created by the epa with skewed test baselines are all a public scare.. Spend the 800-1500 dollars.. It’s what they want you to do.. Giant scam

  12. OMG the home i’m selling got a read of 74.1. Is this even possible. What would make a test go so high. I did just waterproof the basement would that cause high radon?

  13. Radon risk is predicated on the linear no threshold model which is probably not completely true. It assumes that ANY amount of radon/radiation is harmful. Doesn’t make much sense since we live in a world bathed in radiation. There’s a fair amount of evidence that low levels of radon reduce cancer risk. Aggressive mitigation may be harmful.
    At very high levels and in conditions resembling uranium mines, individuals, especially smokers, have a high risk of cancer.
    At levels found in your home, non smokers have little to fear.
    Even if the EPA figures are correct, which is a big IF, you would have to spend 16 hours a day in your basement for 70 years to realize the less than 1% chance of cancer associated with the EPA action level of 4 pCi/L is.
    I have always wondered why the EPA and WHO have been so aggressively certain of their positions with the science being so flimsy.

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