What Is Radon Gas and Why Is It Dangerous?

Building in the construction process

Radon is a naturally occurring element that is derived from the decomposition of uranium in soil. As a gas, radon percolates through the soil to reach the earth’s surface, entering your home through small cracks or gaps, dirt crawlspaces, and cellars. It is important to understand the dangers of radon gas and have your home checked for hazardous radon levels.

Where Does Radon Come From?

Radon gas comes from the soil. Some soils are naturally high in uranium, which decomposes into more stable elements like radon. Next, radon rises through natural openings in soil, but tends to settle in the lowest part of a home, such as a basement, because it is a gas heavier than air. Radon has no smell or taste, so you wouldn’t know that it is in your home or that you are breathing it in.

How do People get Exposed to Radon

If you live in a place with higher than average radon levels, you could be exposed simply by spending time in the basement of your home. Homes with below-grade family or game rooms, laundry rooms, or workshops mean that you are constantly breathing in the radon while in that space. Radon testing can be done to determine the level of radon in your house, which is especially important if you live in a zone with known high radon levels. You can install radon mitigation systems to ventilate your home and dissipate the radon gas to the outdoors where it is simply mixed into the air.

Dangers of Radon Exposure

Radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer overall, and it is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. Each year, about 21,000 people are diagnosed with lung cancer caused by radon. Radon exposure can cause other lung diseases, including chronic breathing problems.


At Straight Shooter Property Inspection, we offer professional radon inspections. Contact us through our website or call us at (216) 659-5435 to schedule a radon inspection for your home or a property that you are considering buying.

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