In order to properly mitigate or prevent radon from entering your home, we need to install a radon mitigation system that will lower the amount of radon in your residence. We make sure it will be as safe and radon free as possible. The proper system will depend on the construction of the building. A radon mitigation system is referred to as an active system which includes an electric fan. Those without fans are called passive systems, which rely on ventilation and sealing. Sometimes both systems are used.
Generally we come across 3 different types of foundation types that each require a different type of mitigation system. The 3 types are crawl space, concrete foundation slab and of course basements.
We will now go over different ways of mitigation on each type of foundation.
Basement and concrete slab foundations:
The most common active mitigation technique is sub-slab depressurization. Suction pipes are inserted under the foundation or into the soil. The number of suction pipes depends on the number of entry points of radon. Sometimes only one suction pipe is needed and other times many are used. Once the pipes are in place, a suction fan is attached just above the basement or foundation and the radon is ventilated outside where it dissipates into the air and isn’t in its lethal potency.
Passive under slab pipes are installed in much the same way except they use differences in the air pressure surrounding the house to ventilate the radon. Most new homes are constructed this way and while its not as effective as an active system it is usually enough to keep radon out.
Using your existing drain tiles in the footer of your home is another way to direct ground water with high levels of radon away from your foundation. Often times this will involve using your sump pump to help dissipate the radon laden ground water away from your home if gravity can not keep up. Another way to ventilate using either sub-slab suction or drain tiles is to use pipes up through the hollow blocks in your foundation as a way to get rid of the radon or ground water.
Crawlspace or dirt basements.
Crawlspaces and dirt floor basements can seep radon up at many points in the floor. To combat this we put down a high density poly that will essentially stop all radon from coming though except at the point where we have designated to funnel the radon into an active fan system that will expel the radon outside the home. Sometimes this can be achieved by passive methods as well depending on the type of pressurization in and around your home.
Some other methods of mitigation are used alone or in conjunction with the methods above. Sealing cracks can help keep radon from seeping in, or funnel it to another area that is leaking. This will also allow the suction in the second area to get rid of all the radon.
Ventilating outside air into the house and down to the lower areas can also help but doing this can cause other problems that having outside air penetrate your home. Using heating or cooling to move the air around your home more freely is another way to fully ventilate using outside air. Again it will result in higher energy costs. Natural ventilation will always help by opening doors and windows but radon levels will usually return to their previous levels within 12 hours.
It’s important to note that homeowners must make sure they systems are properly maintained after installation and that follow up tests are done every 2 years. Active alarms and warning systems can be installed to help keep your notified of potential problems.
Also make sure to consult us if you do any remodeling that may interfere with the installed radon system so that we can make sure it doesn’t affect the safety of your homes radon defense system.
Contact us today for a free phone estimate.