Frank J. Delle Donne Radon Measurement License # MET13186
Brian S. Delle Donne Radon Measurement License # MET14070
The Regal Home Inspections, LLC team has two NJ Department of Environmental Protection (NJ DEP) licensed Radon Measurement Technicians. We often do radon tests as part of the home inspection process and we also do what we call Radon Only Tests.
What is Radon?
Radon is an odorless, colorless gas with origins in the uranium in the bedrock in the soil. If you recall the Periodic Table of the Elements from high school chemistry, radon is one of the elements shown there. The issue with radon is that it’s a radioactive element. Consequently, radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer behind only cigarette smoking. There are tens-of-thousands of deaths per year due to radon.
Should I be concerned living in New Jersey?
Yes, you should. The NJ DEP classifies every part of the state as a, “High radon potential” area, “Moderate radon potential” area and a “Low radon potential” area. I live in Monmouth County and conduct the majority of my inspections in Monmouth, Ocean and Middlesex Counties. Radon is measured in pico Curries per liter of air represented as “pCi/L”. A pico Currie is one trillionth of a Currie which is the measurement of radioactivity. The “Currie” is named after Madam Currie who discovered the element radium and due to her exposure to the radio active elements died from her discovery due to exposure.
Low radon potential means that up to 5% of the homes tested will test at or above the, “Action Level” as the NJ DEP (and other organizations call it) of 4.0pCi/L.
Moderate radon potential means that above 5% and up to 24.999% of the homes tested will test at or above the, “Action Level” as the NJ DEP (and other organizations call it) of 4.0pCi/L.
High radon potential means that up to 25% or more of the homes tested will test at or above the, “Action Level” as the NJ DEP (and other organizations call it) of 4.0pCi/L.
While there are no high areas in Ocean County, I have had a couple of radon tests that have come back high. To that point, please note that the definitions of the levels uses intentionally the word, “Potential”. That means that even Low radon area homes have the potential to test high and some, if not many homes in the High radon potential area will test below. As I tell people, there’s no way to predict. Measurement is necessary to determine where your house is.
In Monmouth County there are a number of NJ DEP classified, “High” areas. For example, Little Silver, Shrewsbury, Holmdel, Colts Neck, Marlboro and Freehold (Twp and Boro), Allentown and others.
In Middlesex County, for example, North Brunswick, Highland Park and Piscataway are high areas as well.
I have had radon test results that have been less than 0.2 and a recent one over 300! Of course everyone wants to hear about the high numbers and in my 1000+ radon tests done I’ve had many from 4.1 to 20. A few over 20. One in the 30s and one, in Somerset County over 50.
Additionally, I have had a few high readings where you might not expect it. A Brick location and a Jackson location at 4.0 pCi/L.
I had a home on a slab foundation in a Moderate radon potential area over 25 pCi/L. And earlier this year one test that came back at 317.0 pCi/L. The 317 was in a home in a High Radon Potential area in a new house in the final stages of construction.
The standard is that NO level of radon exposure is safe. Additionally, radon exists just about everywhere both inside homes and building and outside too! The key, in my opinion is to test. If you’re living or working close to the ground (Not in a modern high-rise office or apartment building) you should know what the radon levels are where you spend most of your time.
When a radon test is part of a home inspection, the radon test fee is usually $50.00. In larger homes multiple test devices may be required therefore effecting the price but $50.00 is common. For a radon-only test (Not in conjunction with a home inspection) the price is $150 – $200 based on how far the property is from my base of operation.