Radon is a gas that comes from the soil and it is colourless and odourless. The gas can spread in our homes and also in the air we inhale. Radon gas was not on many people’s minds when they built or bought a house in the last few decades. When inhaled, lung cancer can be caused by these fine particles. Many modern homes will have radon barriers and vents. But many people don’t know how to get rid of it. Here are some methods used for Radon mitigation.
Methods To Remove Radon Gas
Method 1. Sub Slab Depressurization
SSD systems have been demonstrated to be a reliable, practical, and cost-efficient method. Nowadays these systems are built and operated in residential, commercial buildings. If vapour intrusion is higher than the screening criteria then, a mitigating mechanism should be implemented.
The Sub-Slab Depressurization Solution is the most frequent mitigation system for existing buildings. SSD technology is a system that uses a fan-powered vent to suck air from beneath the slab and create decreased sub-slab air pressure relative to interior air pressure.
Due to this vapours move downward, not upward. Even if there are holes, fissures, or other paths between the building and the subsoil.
The process which you need to know is stated below:
Step 1: Pilot testing – A pilot test of the sub-slab depressurization system is conducted first.
Step 2: Drilling – A hole is drilled through the floor slab into the soil on the ground floor of a structure.
Step 3: Vapor collection – Next collecting pit or sub-slab piping is built. After that, extraction fans are installed.
Step 4: Install Piping – After that, the exhaust and venting pipes are installed.
Step 5: Seal – All plumbing connections to the floor, as well as any external venting sites, must be sealed.
Step 6: Venting – The vent pipe is then routed through the building’s wall or sealed.
Step 7: Exterior termination – The piping must come to a point above the roofline.
Step 8: Monitor – System monitoring gauges, in-line test ports, and a vacuum test need to be installed on the floor.
Method 2. Sealing Cracks
Radon is a gas that can enter a home through any opening in the floor or wall that comes into contact with the earth. Apertures around utility lines, seams between basement floors and walls, holes in the top row of concrete blocks, and tiny cracks and openings are all possible entry points. Other methods when used, sealing cracks and openings is often an important first step.
Sealing alone may be enough for houses with minor radon issues.
Step 1: The holes in the top row of concrete blocks that are in the basement walls should be filled with cement or urethane foam.
Step 2: Flexible polyurethane membrane sealants can be used to seal wall and floor joints.
Step 3: Cracks and utility openings should be expanded. To gas-proof, non-shrinking sealants need to be used to fill them.
Step 4: In-floor drains that link to drainage or weeping-tile systems, a water trap should be built. Water traps allow water to drain away from basement flooring. But also limit or completely cut soil gas intrusion, including radon. To be effective, water traps must be kept full of water.
Step 5: Perimeter drains should be filled with urethane foam. And there must be a backup plan for water drainage.
Step 6: Waterproof paint, cement, or epoxy must be applied on the surface of porous walls.
Method 3: House Or Room Pressurization
This method maintains a higher pressure in the area that is in touch with the soil. This keeps radon out of the house. Blowing upstairs air into the basement is the most popular application in this. But, in some homes, blowing upstairs air into a crawl space may also be appropriate. All of this must be done by a certified professional. A skilled homeowner is also required.
The steps are:
Step 1: Shell between basement area, upstairs, cellar and outdoors, should be tightened.
Step 2: Blow the air from the upstairs into the basement or crawl space.
Step 3: If apertures on the upstairs floor must be built they should have an acceptable cross-section to prevent a significant energy penalty.
Method 4. Heat Recovery Ventilator
An HRV is a dual intake/exhaust fan that transfers heat (energy) from the intake to the exhaust. HRV process is explained below:
Step 1: Determine the amount of air that is required
The volume of fresh airflow is determined using the ASHRAE 62.2 – 2016* national standard which considers both the number of inhabitants and the home’s conditioned floor space. There are online calculators available to find exact values.
Step 2: Energy-Efficient Equipment
Internal fans in HRVs run for many hours a day. Choose a model that produces the appropriate airflow and consumes less energy. The Heating and Ventilating Institute should test and certify HRVs.
Have a look in the HVI directory to choose an efficient model. Look there for the sensible recovery efficiency (SRE) column. This metric illustrates how well the unit transfers heat across air streams. At least 80% of SRE is desirable.
The database clearly displays this value. After that, you’ll need to figure out the efficiency of the device and how well it moves air. It is measured in cubic feet per watt. The efficiency should be at least 1.25 cfm per watt.
Step 3: Determine the Exhaust Points
The stale air exhaust points should be located in each room and other high moisture locations. Since the goal is to drop damp, odorous air from the house. This permits heat to recover from regions of the house with the most humidity and smells. The HRV provides a more pleasant environment compared to the spot ventilation fans.
Step 4: Locate Sources of Fresh Air
Supply points should be placed far enough away from exhaust points. To ensure that fresh air is mixed throughout the house. Bedrooms and living rooms are both fine options. It also has the added benefit of assisting in the maintenance of fresh and clean clothing!
Step 5: Install a Separate Duct System
The majority of experts think that an HRV should have its own specialized duct system. It’s the sole option if the house has hydronic heat or ductless heat pumps.
Step 6: Select an HRV or an ERV
Both HRVs and ERVs may perform well in most climate zones, according to the information above. But what’s the difference between an HRV and an ERV? HRV transmits air temperature between the outgoing and incoming air streams.
But, there is always some water vapour in the air, and that vapour also contains energy. ERV transport heat, water vapour and energy. Between the entering and exiting air streams, a property known as enthalpy.
5. Natural Ventilation
Natural basement ventilation has long been advocated for lowering radon levels in homes. Its effectiveness, however, has never been proven. Natural ventilation was explored for the first time in two research houses.
During summer and winters. Ventilation rates, environmental and home operational factors.
Step 1: Consider the temperature and the location when orienting windows and doors.
A house should be built to take advantage of prevailing breezes. Those breezes vary by location, time of day, climate, and scenery.
Step 2: Determine if you want to direct or deflect airflow. You have to select different window kinds.
Airflow patterns, how air is directed or deflected. This can be influenced by the design and size of openings.
Step 3: Make cross-ventilation holes.
We may believe that wind blows through a structure. But it is actually drawn into low-pressure zones. As a result, openings should be constructed to allow for the passage of winds.
Step 4: Use natural ventilation systems that adjust the openings automatically.
Automatic ventilation systems can open and close window apertures depending on the temperature.
Step 5: Promote the movement of convective air.
Can An Individual Vent The Radon Gas Without Professional Help?
If you’ve tested for radon and discovered you have a problem, you’re wondering, “Can I fix it myself?” Yes, you can. And if you do decide to go forward with it. And professionals would charge around 1500$ for installation. You can do it yourself for 500$. So, if you’re handy and know how to do carpentry, plumbing, and electricity, you can install your own system with proper plans and guidance.
Basic steps to vent manually:
Step 1: Dig a hole
Step 2: Dig beneath the slab
Step 3: Install a pipe from the basement to the attic
Step 4: Insert and secure the pipe
Step 5: Connect the pipe to a fan
Step 6: Install a manometer
Step 7: Put the system to the test.
Steps To Follow Before Starting Radon Mitigation
To install radon mitigation because your radon levels are over recommended levels.
The steps you need to know are:
Step 1: The first step in building a radon barrier is to air the area where you’ll be working.
Step 2: Before you go down there to work, open the windows. Install temporary inlet 5 ft away from the window and turn on the fan for some time.
Step 3: After you know you are suffering from a radon issue, Avoid inhaling it as much as possible.
Step 4: Wear a mask immediately. Also, factor this into any radon mitigation solution specifications.
Step 5: You should contact the Radon mitigation professionals.
Step 6: Professionals can tell you the suitable system to be installed. They do this by looking at the condition of the house.
Step 7: You should review crucial questions with professionals. You should also request a particular proposal.
Step 8: Examine the proposals and get a professional.
Standard Radon Level For House
Any radon level poses some health risk. You can’t make radon levels zero but can reduce them. If the radon level in a home is 4 pCi/L (picocuries per litre) or above, the EPA recommends that it be corrected. There is no safer limit from radon exposure.
The radon mitigation strategies presented here are advantageous. Homeowners get a better understanding of this. Help them know about several options for lowering radon levels in their homes. They shouldn’t be performed by yourself. Radon poisoning in houses is a severe health hazard. Professionals who have experience should handle this.