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RADON TESTING APRIL - AUGUST?: 6 MONTH RADON TEST ENCOURAGED  

Thank you for your interest in testing with the Evict Radon National Study

The Evict Radon National Study is a national research study involving researchers and scientific partners from across Canada who are dedicated to solving Canada’s significant and worsening radon-gas exposure problem. Radon is a substantial cause of lung cancer even in non-smokers. By testing your home with our at-cost, research-grade radon test kits and enrolling in our national, public university-based research study, you are helping researchers from across Canada to understand radon exposure and develop new ways to protect ourselves and loved ones.

Common practice stated that winter is the optimal time to radon test. However, as we collect more data, we have determined little difference between winter and spring radon testing. We do, however, encourage our participants to test over seasonal change. At this time, the best and most accurate radon readings obtained during the spring and summer months are those that are longer than 6 months. 

Radon Exposure Calculator

Calculate the Rate and Total Dose of Alpha Particle Radiation You are Absorbing from the Radon in Your Home.

What dose of radiation are you getting from radon?

Using the latest science, the International Commission for Radiological Protection (ICRP) has developed a conversion formula to estimate the amount of alpha particle radiation being absorbed by your lungs from radon. To calculate this, two numbers are needed:

  1. A long-term household radon level in Bq/m3 or pCi/L
  2. The number of hours a person spends per year breathing air in that property. This “activity pattern” is unique to a specific person depending on their lifestyle, and may not be the same for everyone living, learning or working under the same roof.

This calculator will allow you to estimate your absorbed radiation exposure based on these numbers, as an annual rate and total dose, based on the amount of time you have lived in that property.

Radon and your health

Radon is a radioactive, naturally occurring gas, and a leading cause of lung cancer. 

The overall relative risk of lung cancer increases by 16% for every 100 Bq/m3. This is based on over 10,000 lung cancer patients and controls, who had their homes tested for radon using long-term testing devices, across North America, Europe and China.

Testing for radon is simple and cheap. A reliable radon test is:

Health Canada’s maximum tolerated exposure limit for radon is 200 Bq/m3, but increased lifetime cancer risks are evident at anything at or above 100 Bq/m3. The best advice is to have radon levels that follow the ALARA principle (As Low As Reasonably Achievable). We have a detailed page on how to interpret your radon levels here

Radon is an odourless, colourless and tasteless gas and there are no immediate symptoms of radon gas exposure that a person will notice. Although there are no symptoms from radon exposure, the radiation released by radon (alpha particles) will immediately damage the DNA of the cells lining the lungs. This damage increases your lifetime relative risk of the only scientifically verified health effects of radon exposure: lung cancer. The only way to know you have radon in your home is to use a Health Canada-recommended long-term testing device. 

Yes. Combined tobacco use and high radon dramatically increase your lung cancer risks than either alone. Health Canada has some information on this here. If you are exposed to or use tobacco products, testing your home for radon (and mitigating it if high) is one way of lowering your chance of getting lung cancer.

It is important to note that there are other verified causes of lung cancer that when combined with radon exposure, will dramatically increase your lifetime relative risk of getting lung cancer. These are:

Exposure to air pollution such as forest fire smoke and combustion particulates (called particulate matter less than 2.5 microns aka PM 2.5)
Exposure to heavy metals such as Arsenic
Exposure to Asbestos
Previous history of severe lung inflammation (such as pneumonia and tuberculosis)

Radon and where you live

Yes! Unfortunately, Canada has some of the highest radon levels globally and no place in Canada is free from radon. Learn more about radon in Canada here

ALL of Canada has the potential for high radon (there is no radon “free” area). The biggest influencing factor on high radon is how your home is built and used. The only way to know for sure is to test.

Radon and your home

Radon mitigation is the process of preventing a home from pulling soil gases into the living space. This usually consists of an active fan pulling soil gases from under the foundation of a home and venting it outside. When properly installed, these systems are extremely effective at lowering radon in a home. We have detailed information on a blog and a dedicated page on our website.

No, all homes have some method of air mixing and heating effects that mixes air nearly evenly across the home. Based on our peer-reviewed and published research, basements are only 13% higher than the main and upper floors. This means that if your basement is high in radon, so too are your main and upper floors.

Through our research, we see that ALL homes have the potential to be high in radon. But, our research shows that newer homes have an increased chance of having high radon. Whereas 1 in 9 homes built before 1940 are above Health Canada’s limit of 200 Bq/m3, a home built after 2001 has doubled this risk to 1 in 4.5 homes above 200 Bq/m3.

 

Not necessarily. If your home was built after 2010 – 2015 (depending on your province/territory) there will be a “radon rough-in”. This is the beginning of a radon mitigation system but is non-functional. This requires a certified professional to install an active fan and complete the installation of a full mitigation system.

The Evict Radon National Study

There are a few reasons:

  • We offer an at-cost kit and take no profits whatsoever, from radon testing or mitigation.
  • We use the only internationally certified (ISO 17025) radon tester and constantly perform quality controls to ensure the radon reading you get is reliable.
  • Your anonymous, de-identified radon test will be used in scientific research by Canadian scientists to solve Canada’s large and worsening radon problem to:
    • Promote informed changes to building practices
    • Promote policy changes to address those who are affected the most by radon exposure
    • Inform all Canadians about radon and its health effects

The Evict Radon National Study is a Canadian public-sector, university-based cancer prevention study. Our team consists of researchers and other scientists based at universities and agencies from coast to coast, including BC Cancer Agency (BC), Simon Fraser University (BC), University of Calgary (AB), University of Saskatchewan (SK), University of Ottawa (ON), Université Laval (QC), Dalhousie University (NS), Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (ON), the National Research Council (of Canada), and Health Canada.

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