First off, no I am not a radon mitigation installer, I am the marketing guy at Utah Radon Services. I was invited to my first radon mitigation installation at a home in West Jordan that was for sale.
We provided a free radon test to one of our real estate partners on a home he had for sale. The radon test came back for that home at 11.7 pCi/L and since that level would create the same risk for lung cancer that is equal to smoking more than a pack of cigarettes a day, it’s a good thing they were getting this taken care of before the home sold.
The EPA recommends that homes over 4.0 pCi/L get mitigation, so getting this radon system would help the home sell quicker and it would be safer for the new buyers.
I arrived at the home at 7 am and met our installation crew. The first thing the crew did was to put down carpet runners (floor coverings) and made sure that they wouldn’t track any dirt or snow from the outside.
The realtor guessed the best way to install the radon system would be in a closet on the east end of the basement. Our installer noticed that the closet was facing the fireplace and drilled a test hole and found out that the fireplace would block our access to do an exterior radon system.
The radon mitigation installation crew contacted the realtor and told him that we would need to install the system in another closet across from the room and go out through to the garage and install an interior system. The realtor agreed to the new location and plan.
The crew checked the new area with another drill test and found a good location that would hide the system, and give easy access to the garage.
Our crews use commercial core drilling equipment so we can cut a clean access hole down through the concrete floor for the new radon system without creating any dust. I then watched the crew proceeded to cut into the foundation and cut a perfect circle. I was amazed at how little dust the core drill machine made with the water lubrication system and vacuum attached and how easy it cut through the concrete floor.
Once they reached dirt, they had to hand dig and pull the dirt out. Unfortunately for our crew, this ground was full of clay and made it more difficult to remove the dirt. I asked how much they had to dig and they said they needed to fill three 5- gallon buckets. Even though this is a lot of work, I learned most radon companies don’t take out this much. We have found that it is well worth the extra work and produces the best performing radon systems with the lowest levels of radon after the installation is completed.
I helped hold the ladder as one of our installers braved an icy roof and attached the radon vent to the roof. Luckily this wasn't his first rodeo and he got off the ladder without incident. After he got down, the radon exhaust matched the other exhaust on the roof and I couldn't tell which one was the radon exhaust.
The installers put a bushing over the hole that they dug and stuck a 4" PVC pipe through the opening from the garage. They turned the radon fan on and I was shocked how loud the fan was before it was connected. Once they connected it, I couldn't even hear the fan.
The entire installation took about two hours and the installation cleaned up and afterward, you couldn't tell they were there. This photo is what the installation looked like in the closet. Be sure to order your Free Radon Test.