January is National Radon Action Month and a reminder of what you can do to protect your home and family.
Radon is an invisible, odorless, tasteless, radioactive gas. While no immediate symptoms will signal its presence, exposure at high levels can cause cancer. Testing is the only way to know a home’s radon levels.
Laws that went into effect in 2023 apply Montgomery County’s home energy disclosure and radon testing laws to the sale of single-family homes and townhomes in Rockville and require specific rental properties to be tested for radon. The laws provide residents with access to important home health and energy information. The goal is to protect public health from radon exposure and promote home energy efficiency, an objective of the city’s Climate Action Plan.
The City of Rockville is giving away a limited number of radon test kits to city residents. Reservations for a free test kit, a link to discounted $3 kits and more can be found at www.rockvillemd.gov/radon.
The test involves placing a small measuring device in the middle of the basement or lowest level of your home, raised 3 feet off the ground for two to four days, then following directions in the kit for mailing the device to a laboratory for results.
The city’s building code requires all new single-family construction to include passive radon mitigation, such as subfloor preparation, installation of a soil-gas retarder, the closure of potential radon entry routes and the installation of vent pipes, all of which are verified through required city inspections.