Is Radon Testing Required In Virginia?

If you are wondering, “Is radon common in Virginia?” The answer is radon is one gas that is present virtually everywhere, and Virginia is no exception. Therefore, radon testing is required for every place, no matter where in the US you live. There are radon zones showing radon levels all over the US by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency). 

Hundreds of people are turning to Virginia radon testing services for their homes. The scare is real because radon is a threat inside your homes instead of the outdoor environment. Radon is responsible for 15000 to 20000 deaths a year since it is the second biggest cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. The number of deaths is not very far behind smoking which is the number one cause. It is a fact that radon can take as little as five years to develop cancer and a maximum of  25 years within people with a high level exposure. This time frame in which cancer is developed is co-dependent on two factors:

  • The concentration of radon in homes
  • The length of exposure to radon gas

This fact concludes that being in the radon 1-zone or radon zone-3 doesn’t save you from this deadly disease, and it is only a matter of when it will happen in case your home has it. A person exposed to high radon levels may develop cancer in 5 years, whereas someone subjected to an environment with lower levels but exposed nonetheless may develop it in ten. This determines that there is no denying the importance of radon testing in homes all over Virginia.

Radon Testing Virginia:

 Even though radon testing is not required in Virginia, having your home tested for radon is highly recommended. Virginia has three radon zones at exceptionally high risk for radon. You can check them out in the Virginia radon map here. You will notice the cities in red are marked at high risk and are considered zone-1, the ones in orange are at moderate risk and makeup zone-2; lastly, the low-risk cities are in yellow and marked as zone-3.

Is Radon A Problem In Virginia?

Northern Virginia, unfortunately, is a radon problem area and majorly marked under the zone-1 as 56% of homes tested are at radon levels higher than the acceptable levels from what is recommended by the EPA.

Radon Levels By Zipcode In Virginia:

Find out which radon zone your zip code falls in by following this map provided by EPA for the convenience of the residents of Virginia. What surprised me was that places like Fairfax and Frederick, which I stayed in as recently as a year back and was in total awe off, are rated as the best places to live in Virginia; these sadly fall in the radon Virginia zone-1! This makes me wonder, is there anyone safe from Radon?


What Are The Acceptable Radon Levels In Virginia?

So what exactly are the acceptable radon levels? Here is some information I will share to make you more informed about the acceptable levels and share more details about this radioactive gas.

Radon is produced from the soil below the ground as a result of the breakdown of naturally present radioactive elements, mainly uranium and thorium; radon gas is produced as part of their decaying radioactive process. 

No matter how well-sealed your home is, radon always finds a way in. This deadly gas enters your homes mainly from below, where the house comes in contact with the ground’s surface. This can be through cracks in the foundation, water pipes or sump pumps. It doesn’t really matter whether your home has a basement or not; if it’s new or old, sealed or drafty, chances are it has radon in it, and probably at higher levels if you are in Northern Virginia.

Radon Testing Northern Virginia:

Northern Virginia is close to Washington, DC, and has many beautiful mountains and beaches. It has many independent flourishing beautiful cities like Falls Church, Arlington, Old Town Alexandria, Fairfax, Chantilly, and Loudoun County, to name a few. It’s a pity that despite their popularity and beauty, all of these are at high risk for radon. ‘Radon testing Northern Virginia’ is a trending search because more people are becoming aware of this gas’s lethal repercussions and are desperate to have their homes tested in order to keep their loved ones safe.

Is Radon Only In The Basement?

The myth that radon is present only in the basement of a home is not true. Any surface of your home, whether in contact with the earth below or not, may have radon gas. It does not matter what level it is; since radon rises upwards from the soil below. Basements on the other hand may have higher radon concentration levels than other areas, although this is not always the case.

How Much Does A Radon Test Cost In Virginia?

Radon testing can cost between $150 to $350 for readily available test kits; however, a thorough radon testing from a certified radon inspector might cost you $400. There is a vast difference between a home test kit and professional radon testing. Home radon testing kits may be the answer if you are on a budget and don’t want to spend more. A ‘Radon testing Virginia’ search on Google’s search engine will provide you with endless resources to get information regarding radon inspection services and Virginia’s radon test kits, their prices, and how to use them. In addition, you can schedule an appointment with a reliable and well-reputed radon inspection company to know the accurate radon testing cost. 

Internet search engine results show large numbers of people searching for ‘Radon Testing Virginia Beach’; this only shows residents’ concerns even in areas like Virginia Beach, which has potentially low radon levels compared to other parts of Virginia.

Is A Radon Home Test Kit Accurate?

There is a never-ending discussion about which radon testing process is more accurate and efficient. There are two types of home test kits available in the market, a short-term test kit (1- 5 days) and a long-term test kit (90 days testing duration), the long-term kit being more expensive.

Many people often ask if a $15 home radon test kit can provide accurate results, then why go for radon testing, which costs, let’s say, $450? Choosing one of the two solely lies at the homeowners’ discretion, and common sense should prevail. Why would you buy a pair of pumps from Nordstrom when you can buy a pair off the rack from Walmart at a fraction of the cost. To some, this comparison may seem ridiculous but to get my point across, when you pay more, you pay for quality. Then again, just like an expensive purchase gives you a sense of contentment, so does a quality inspection and a professional inspector’s service, which comes with a guarantee. 

To validate my point further, I will give you factual evidence from Science Daily, which reports a University of Calgary research where researchers put two home test kits, a 5-day radon test kit, and a 90-day radon test kit in the same home during summer and winter seasons both. The findings showed that the short-term kits were inaccurate 99% of the time compared to the long-term home testing kits.

Is A Long-Term Home Testing Kit Worth Your Time And Energy?

Now that we know short-term testing kits are not worth it because of their inaccuracy, let’s shift our focus to comparison of a long-term testing kit in contrast to getting a professional home inspection. If you want to know about home inspection cost, then visit our website.

Suppose you are searching for home radon testing in Northern Virginia; what do you do? Start with a google search, shortlist testing kits according to their prices, availability, and accuracy levels? To get to this point, you will probably read endless reviews on each company’s kit, make comparisons, and analyze whether it is worth buying. Then, the trip to the local hardware stores, getting more information from the storekeepers and still trying to figure out which kit is the most suitable; oh, did I forget to mention the fuel and time expense. Then again, this is only the beginning of a 90- day long journey for home testing, where you will set up a device after you figure out a perfect place for it (after much research again) and follow the radon test kits instructions. Then you will place the kit after much deliberation and ensure the instructions enclosed are followed diligently for 90-days. 

Well, I got tired just writing that, and we aren’t even halfway there; let us just admit home testing is not a cakewalk, I feel that way, and I’m sure many others would agree with me. The convenience of picking up the phone and calling a home inspector to come over and get done with the testing without me having to stress about a thing is worth the price i pay for a professional radon inspection—testing myself for something lethal enough to cause cancer and thinking if I did it accurately and whether I’m breathing safe air is just not worth a few hundred dollars. For radon testing in Charlottesville, where I live, I will just call an experienced Virginia inspector I got referred to by a friend and get it off my chest. If you need radon testing or mitigation information, Book a certified professional and ask for assistance. The wellbeing of your loved ones lies in informed decisions that you take today, and as I mentioned earlier, let common sense prevail.

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