Protect your family and community from radon

 
Submitted by Brian Louie
Updated 1/16/2019 12:24 PM
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  • Any home can have a radon buildup. Simple and inexpensive testing kits are available through the Lake County Health Department.

    Any home can have a radon buildup. Simple and inexpensive testing kits are available through the Lake County Health Department. Courtesy of Brian Louie

Radon gas builds up in homes over time and can't be seen, tasted, or smelled, making it easy for radon problems to go unnoticed.

The Lake County Health Department and Community Health Center recommends that all residents test the radon levels in their homes and apartments during the winter season, when indoor radon levels are highest.

"It is estimated that 1 in 15 American homes have high levels of radon, a leading cause of lung cancer," said Mark Pfister, the health department's executive director. "Simple and inexpensive, testing for radon is the only way to know if your home is exposed."

The health department offers short-term testing kits for $10, available at 500 W. Winchester Road, Libertyville, or for $13 by mail. The cost includes return postage, laboratory analysis and interpretation by health department staff. Test kits are also available from area hardware and building supply stores.

Radon is a radioactive gas naturally found in rock and soil. It typically moves up through the ground to the air above and into homes through cracks and other holes in the foundation.

Homes trap radon inside, where it can build up. Any home may have a radon problem. This means new and old homes, well-sealed and drafty homes, and homes with or without basements.

If test results reveal elevated levels of radon in a home, contact a radon professional to evaluate and fix the problem.

For more information and to request a short-term testing kit, contact the health department at (847) 377-8020 or visit www.lakecountyil.gov/2450/Radon.

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