According to the EPA, radon gas is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Radon is a radioactive gas that is odorless and colorless. It comes from the decay of small amounts of uranium that naturally occurs in the soil under the house. The radon gas collects in the house and the concentration increases; the very things that save us money with energy (air sealing and insulation) can elevate radon levels.
Fortunately, it is easy to reduce the level of radon to acceptable levels for about $750-$1200. Having us test for radon in your home will allow you to make an informed decision about whether or not to mitigate.
Mold exists in every house. What is the source and is it a concern? If the mold inside a house is similar in type and amount to the molds naturally occurring outside, then that is considered normal. Unusual mold species or high levels inside the house when compared to the outside are normally caused by moisture from some source. This is most commonly seen in homes that have a problem with moisture in the basement. Mold testing typically involves swab and air testing. If there is visible evidence of mold, a swab can be used to take a sample from one-square inch of the material.
Swab Test: In the lab, an industrial hygienist evaluates the swab and qualitatively identifies the type of mold. A swab does not provide any quantitative information about the mold.
Air Test: An air test is used to determine what is in the air that you are breathing. A 150-liter air sample is filtered and the mold spores are deposited on a microscope slide. The lab analyzes the slide and determines the number of spores per cubic meter of air for each species. This information is then compared with the mold levels outside. For this reason, an air sample requires at least two samples: one inside and one outside.