The interest in protecting our homes from Radon Gas continues to increase. Many homes are at present undergoing the 3 month test. In 48 hours after the R.T.E. broadcast the R.P.I.I. (Radiological Protection Institute Ireland) had 500 requests for test kits and 4,000 hits on the web. If using the services of R.P.I.I. you will have the test results back in a week and, if necessary, will be given advice on methods to improve the situation.
One question frequently asked –“is it sufficient to just open my windows to improve the ventilation”. Opening windows will only act if the levels are low and any improvement is only temporary. Once windows are closed again – for security reasons or heating purposes – then the Radon concentrations fill up again within 2 hours. Opening windows upstairs in a two storey house is actually dangerous as the open window acts as a funnel drawing the gas up through the house.
If action is necessary, whatever method is chosen, it is important to realise that it must be a 24 hour a day job, i.e. the sump fan, must run continuously and the wall vents or windows must always be open.
Another consideration is that for the sale or rent of a property one now requires a Building Energy Rating certificate. It is hoped that in the near future a Radon Gas level reading will be part of this.
We would again stress that although this is regarded as a high risk area it does not follow that your neighbour’s high level reading means that you will have a similar one. The only way to be sure is to have your house tested . €65 is a small price to pay for peace of mind.