Radon test kits not available at this time – check back in fall 2022
Radon is a cancer-causing, radioactive gas that enters homes through the ground. Forty percent of homes in Garfield County have tested above the EPA limit. Garfield County no longer has free radon test kits available. Please inquire back in fall of 2022.
Sealing up your home during the winter is great for keeping out the cold. But, if your home has radon you could be sealing this dangerous gas in!
Eighty percent of counties in Colorado are at high risk for radon, including Garfield County. Long-term exposure to radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers, and the second leading cause of lung cancer in smokers. It has no color, odor, or taste. The only way to know the level of radon in your home is to use a radon test kit. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has granted funding to Garfield County Public Health to administer a radon awareness and prevention program.
Radon testing is not recommended during warm weather months when homes are “open.” A closed environment is preferred in order to gauge an accurate level of radon in the home.
For more information, please call Garfield County Public Health at 970-665-6383.
Radon is an odorless, tasteless, colorless gas that is believed to result in approximately 20,000 lung cancer deaths per year; indeed, it is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. It results from the radioactive decay of uranium in the soil. Radon, when it enters the body, leaves behind daughter particles that can remain in your lungs and disrupt cell reproduction.
While this gas is naturally occurring and present all around us, it can become concentrated in homes and other buildings and be damaging to human health. Particularly in winter months when doors and windows are closed, pressure differences between buildings and the outdoor air can create a vacuum that actively pulls radon from the soil into a home. Even well-sealed homes can allow radon to enter (see diagram below).
Mountain states like Colorado typically have much higher concentrations of radon than other regions of the US. Cracks and fissures in the rock provide pathways for radon to move to the surface; also, the geologic formations in our area often have higher concentrations of uranium associated with them. Surprisingly, 52 of Colorado’s 64 counties are determined to be at high risk for radon! Garfield County’s 2010 -2011 radon program indicated that 44% of homes tested had radon values above the EPA’s “Action Limit” of 4 pCi/L (pico-curies/liter).
Mitigation typically is less than the cost of a standard home repair. Regardless of whether you have a crawlspace or basement, a mitigation contractor can install piping that will vent the radon from the soil to outside the building.