Frequently Asked Questions

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Testing Process

Canada is now at the stage where it is no longer sufficient to just promote person-by-person radon testing, we need system-wide change. Basic radon testing programs have been in operation for decades, from many, many organizations, yet homes continue to be constructed containing more and more radon, and cases of never-smoker (radon-attributable) lung cancers continue to rise. By testing your home with one of our Evict Radon study test kits, you’re automatically enrolled into the largest Canadian multi-university research study operating today. Each participant is helping public university-based researchers across Canada understand radon exposure and develop new ways to protect ourselves and our loved ones. The Evict Radon national study team embraces research strategies across disciplines to gain the information necessary to:

  • Learn how to engineer radon out of our buildings (before they are even built).
  • Identify who are the most at risk from radon exposure in society, and how to support them.
  • Make meaningful changes to radon reduction policies across sectors.

This must be done by strictly adhering to national research ethics standards, as well as best practices for controlled studies that will pass academic peer-review and, ultimately, very close scrutiny from the public and experts. Achieving this is very possible and, if successful, will transform the ability to prevent lung cancers caused by radon.

Generally we advise retests under these conditions:

  1. If you’ve done some renovations or related things that may have altered the way your home “breathes” and air flows within it. Things like this would include, for example, a new furnace, developing a basement, getting new windows or changing the level of window glazing, adding or removing a window/door/wall, adding or decommissioning a chimney, adding new roof insulation, getting a new roof, getting AC, adding HRV to the heating system… and things like that.
  2. Health Canada recommends a retest every 5 years. If you wish to retest your home with Evict Radon, our kits are sold year-round. 

For detailed instructions on the return process, please visit click here.

This is only relevant for participants who purchased their radon detection kit(s) before November 26th 2021. 

For all participants who purchased their radon testing kits from our study before the end of November 2021, these versions of our kits do not include pre-paid return shipping and use a slightly different device and process (that was not available prior to this date).

If you have one of these kits (the easiest way to tell is if you have a round, ‘hockey puck’ shaped device) then, when your testing period ends (whenever that might be), you will have to ship the device to the to the North American collection hub (which is in Illinois, USA) using the address provided in your kit or here.

Just as a reminder, NONE of your data is held in the USA, and your test is not going to be ‘read’ in the USA. All data is held on either Canadian or EU servers, both subject to incredibly rigorous data privacy regulations. 

Please see our returned shipping details here.

 

No problem, it happens. 

Once you have completed the 90+ day test, you’ll need to end your device by visiting www.evictradon.org and clicking ‘end my test’. Once you have done that, you are ready to send the device back to the lab. The device is durable and can be placed as is, into a shipping box or padded envelope. Ensure you tape the box or seal the envelope. Follow the return instructions and take the device to the nearest post office.

We advise that new homes should only be tested in the second winter from the time the foundation was built. That is because the foundation will continue to “cure” (shrink) for 18 months from the time it was poured. As it cures, the gaps between the foundation and the walls of the basement will change, impacting how radon enters the home.

Generally speaking, if you are carrying out major renovations to the property, you should wait until they are completed before testing for radon. These include things such as: developing a basement, replacing the roof or windows, installing new furnaces or air conditioning units, installing or removing fireplaces, installing or removing fans, installing or exchanging building insulation and other major changes that may impact how air is leaving, entering or being retained in the property. Minor renovations, such as painting walls, changing carpets, or replacing appliances will not impact a radon reading and so are not a reason to delay testing.

Place your test device on the lowest regularly occupied level of your home. We have detailed placement advice here.

Most frequently, this is because something went wrong when you registered your device or your email has blocked the email from the lab with your report.

If you still have your commission ID & password, you can check for yourself. Click ‘end my test’ at the top of our website to access the log-in to the lab website directly. Log in using your ID and password. If your lab report is available, you will see a button with ‘download report’. 

It can take 4-8 weeks to get your results depending on a number of factors such as shipping time. If it has been longer than that, send us an email at [email protected] and we will do our best to track down your results. 

 

Our scientists perform hundreds of control tests to ensure quality and accuracy. These tests include blanks (un-exposed tests put through the whole process to ensure the quality), duplicates (you may receive a second test device at no cost, which must be placed side-by-side with the first test so we can ensure reproducibility of readings) and spiked positives (tests we send to labs to be exposed to known amounts of radon, to ensure that devices are accurate).

Health

Radon is carcinogenic, and exposure to radon has been shown to increase the risk of lung cancer. The objective of this study was to quantify the proportion and number of lung cancer cases in Alberta in 2012 that could be attributed to residential radon exposure. In June 2017, the U of C published a study “Lung cancer incidence attributed to residential radon exposure in Alberta in 2012”. Click here to read the research. 

Mitigation

We have detailed a guide on how to interpret your radon results. To find out more, please click here.

The 2010 National Building Code for Canada mandated that homes should be built with both a vapour barrier between the foundation and washed gravel underneath, and a portal for a future radon mitigation device. Different provinces adopted this code at different times. In Alberta, only homes built from early 2016 onwards are likely to have this rough in. In Saskatchewan, homes built mid 2013 onwards are likely to have this. In BC, only homes built early 2013 onwards and in the interior are likely to have this. Homes on the BC coast are still not required to have this. A radon mitigation rough-in is not an active mitigation device. It is there to make it easier and most cost-effective to install a future device.

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