I tested our finished basement twice and the results came back
indicating a slight radon problem. I have installed a french drain in
the basement and have clean outs in three corners of a rectangular
basement. in the fourth corner is a sump pump. I will set things up so
that air is drawn (via small holes in cleanouts) from the four corners
of our basement.
What is a good compromise between getting almost all radon out of the
basement and keeping warm (expensive) air in the basement? Should I
figure on removing the air from the basement once a day, twice, ???
Thank you for any help.
The air exchange idea came to mind for me, but it was quickly shot
down, after reading the epa's standing on it, and local home owners. A
simple negative under floor system can cost only a several hundreds of
dollars and be done in days. You might want to talk to home owners
who have had work done, rather than a DIY solution.
As for a slight problem, what was your readings? Does the level
warrant doing something about it, or investing your money elsewhere?
tom @ www.WorkAtHomePlans.com
That does seem to make more sense. Less heated air is drawn out of the
house. Like I said, as I have a interior french drain it should be easy
to install such a system.
You might want to talk to home owners
I apologize for not having the actual numbers. I just remember it was
higher then recommended and I wanted to take action. Our basement gets a
lot of use. This should take me less than a day and less then 200$
Thank you for your reply.
I suppose in my mind you are clueless to even go to this extent on
Just goes to show how some otherwise intelligent people can be folled
by the Radon scams.
I'm a physicist living in New England, and I wouldn't ever go to the
bother of conducting a Radon test, although my home is predominately
built on granite based bedrock. I've made lab quality radiation
measurement in by basement, and guess what, found nothing. Just for the
heck of it an for a good laugh, I allowed one of those Radon
remediation guys to come into my home and take some measurement. After
placing a few carbon filled container in my home and sending them back
to his uncertified lab, he declare that we had one of the worst Radon
contamination problems that he had ever seen, but could remediate at a
cost of $4,700!!!!
Fun guy that I am, I asked them to run a second series of test which
they did. This time I planted six specimens of Radon emitting isotopes
(some really hot Uranium speciments and a few samples of Radium
compounds) around the basement, which could be expected to drive the
Radon content in the air off the top of the chart, but the report
returned said that although not as high as perviously, the Radon
content of the basement air was sufficient to warrant treatment.
Interesting, by the time the cost of the remediation treatment has
decreased to $2,200 for the $4,700 originally quoted.
I am convince that the entire Radon scare thing, while now undergoing a
slow death is absolutely nothing but a total scam perpetrated to make
money. It is simply a high-tech version of the old Gypsy Curse thing,
in which if you pay someone, they will make the evil thing go away.
Did you every bother to research what those Radon tests that you
purchased amounted to in real quantitative radiation level
measurements. I'd guess not. Realize that you simply got sucked up
into what is today a dying scam, a scare technique designed to cause
you to invest in remediation systems that are both costly and entirely
In short, you got conned!
andy everett wrote:
We used a band of Gypsies to take care of our Radon problem. They camped out
for a week and used lots of wine and cheese, as well as a few BBQ chickens.
After they left, I realized,
WE DON'T HAVE A BASEMENT! They did however, take care of the curse rumored
to be moving through the neighborhood. Now we have a strange garlic odor
that needs attention. Will E.
Your expectations were wrong from the beginning.
To drive the radon content up in a room one must consider the
activity-to-surface are of the specimen. With several kilograms of
Monazite sand it will work, but not really with some hard stones
of ore. Put them into a tin can and you have a "radon cow" which you
can milk every few days to test some equipment. The radon does not
steam off from a stone like smoke from a burning piece of coal.
In an average flat house every inhabitant smokes 5 cigarettes per day,
even when he is a non-smoker. Radon is linked to lung cancer
and the governmental bureaus of statistics have the numbers of deaths.
Nothing to down-play, as you do, OTOH nothing to exaggerate.
Helmut Wabnig wave his hands in the air, and poted"
Helut, get a grip! First, who said anything about cigarette smoking.
Why even bring it up?
Second, most people of sufficient age and educated to somewhere between
the B.S. level and the PhD level in the science will share with you
that the Radon Scam is the grandson of the TV Tube Radiation Scam,
where in the 1950s, when television was new, everyone was urged to
purchase a protective shielding screen (manufactured by the Old Gypsy
Products Manufacturing Division of Gypsy Switch Internationale) to
place over the screen of their ancient black and white TV sets. Turned
out that this was a total scam or fraud, and while some of the early
color TV sets could produce an insignificant amout of soft radiation
from their high-voltage rectifiers, that too never amounted to
Then later came that paranoid campaign against the fluoridation of
drinking water, mostly perpetrated by ignorant old ladies and dentists
who didn't want to see any loss of buiness, but that also faded. Today,
most progressive communities fluoridate their drinking water, and you
are hard pressed to purchase a tube of tothpaste that does not contain
Then came the great ozone scare, and up to a few years ago the Radon
scare. Both turned out to be more hype than fact, and were based on
someone getting paid for a service that was completely bogus. What is
not bogus is the fact that uranium and radium elements in natural rock
slowly radioactively decay to produce any number of daughter products,
some of which are radioactive and some are not. Radon is one of these,
but is naturally emitted at such a slow rate that it is incapable of
producing any notable health effects on humans. Thats, a fact, and if
you don't like that fact, then you are a foolish sheep simply waiting
to be sheared by the many (now quite a few lesss) selling Radon
remediation systems for the home. This scam ranks right up there with
those Gypsy Scams that try to sell Carbon Monoide detection systems to
homeowners with electric heat!
With Radon, the Gypsy remediation scam artist will generally tell the
home owner that the Radon can accumulate over a long period of time and
reach health threatening potentials, YET OMIT TELLING THE HOMEOWNER
THAT RADION HAS A HALF LIFE OF ONLY ABOUT 3.8 DAYS, AND SOME OF THE
OTHER RADIOACTIVE COMPONENTS ASSOCIATED WITH THE RADON EMISSIONS HAVE
HALF LIVES MEASURE IN MINITES. Still, once scared into paranoia if not
hysteria, some homeowners immediately write checks in amounts of
thousands of dollars to have this risk eliminated, then return to their
normal routine of smoking and drinking!
Read a textbook covering nuclear or atomic physics and tell me if and
where I am incorrect.
Now regarding smoking. Since the age of 13 I have regularly smoked a
pack of unfiltered Camel cigarettes each and every day, and next year I
will be 70. In spite of the enormous risks and exposures to toxic
chemicals, high level radiation, and smoking, I have already outlived
all of my ancestors and assume that I will likely die at about the age
of 75. After all, some people don't seem to realize that no matter how
careful one is in the conduct of their life, they will eventually die.
That's another fact. I've life my life in such a way that I can
truthfully say that I've enjoyed every day of it, and will continue to
do so as long as possible. Still, I can also tell readers that I would
be unwilling to trade one cigarette or one shot of Single Malt Scotch
Whiskey for one day of life in a nursing home. Given that, like many
older people, I have a foolproof plan and mechanism in place to avert
that unthinkable possibility.
Death will come to each of us individually in many different way,
taking some of our young and many of us older folks. Still, at least to
me, the very worst death of all would be to die realizing that I had
wasted much of my life being scammed into ridicululous cautionary
measures by the hoaxers, scam artists, and Gypsy frauds as some do.
p.s., How would each of you prefer to die? For me, it would be in one
of two ways. The first would be like Slim Pickins in the movie "Dr.
Strangelove". The second would to be being shot to death by a lover,
just as I had climaxed with another woman. OK, this is an adult
newsgroup, and I am a curmudgeon! For me, the worst possible death
would be what those three stupid mountain climber experienced on Mt.
Rainier stupidly climbing the mountain in December -- They paid the
price of their stupidity, and it is too bad that so many others had to
put their lives at risk trying to save them from their idiocy. Make of
that what you want.
Helmut Wabnig wrote:
The Radon exposure in an average ground floor is equalled up to 5
tschicks per day, according to literature.
Radon is responsible for 80 to 40 % of our lifetime dose, they say.
The numbers depend strongly on the date of publication,
getting smaller with time.
One will not easily find a derivation of the numbers on internet.
They are "retro calculated" estimates dating from before ice age.
Anyhow, where Radon is, lung cancer is more prevalent, period.
You are the necessary statistical deviation from the mean,
without you, census would collapse.
The EPA says a non-smoker continuously exposed to 4 pCi/l has a lifetime risk
of dying of lung cancer of 73 in 10,000, ie odds of 139 to 1. At 1.25 (close
to the 1.3 average indoor level) it's down to 23/10K, ie 435:1. At 0.4 (the
average outdoor level), it's 23/100K, ie 4,348:1.
... 4 was picked as a reasonable level to obtain for a reasonable cost
for a reasonable number of homes without panicking the public or busting
the budget... not that based on the hazard and the risk and the cost of
mitigation to that level... we should be controlling it to below .4 pC/l
for the average public.
The NSC gives 2:1 (men) and 3:1 (women) odds for contracting heart disease,
3:1 for contracting diabetes, 228:1 for death as a car occupant, 1,310:1
for death by medical complications, 4,857:1 for death as a bicyle rider,
12,417:1 for legal intervention involving firearm discharge, 55,597:1 for
death by legal execution, 56,439:1 for death by lightning, 286,537:1 for
ignition or melting of nightwear, 372,498:1 for death by contact with
venemous spiders, 413,887:1 for death by flood, and 1,241,661:1 for death
by contact with venemous snakes or lizards.
WITH mitigation to the recommended level, we are a lot more likely to die
of radon than to die in a auto accident. So why do we spend so much more
money and effort protecting ourselves from auto accidents?
EPA has a nasty habit of extrapolating hazard curves straight to zero
where in real life this does not happen.
Then they will add a safety factor - maybe 10X. Woe to the areas where
radon levels get written into the housing codes ;(
Frank, I ingest more Radion with one deep draw on a Camel cigarette
than I would from living in a "Radon plagued" home over 50 years.
Still, remember that I was not the one that injected smoking into this
Then too, the proponents of this pathological science and hysteria have
already demonstarted in this thread their incapability to distingush
one hypothetical fear from another. Here.
I believe that the problem is that the terminally dumb get the same
vote as do the educated folks, and that Bumsky from Dismal Seepage, WV,
has a perfect right to offset the informed vote of Howard, a professor
That's the United States' system...it called democracy. Given that,
thank God for the Electoral College!
Nick, nice post, but now tell me:
Do you know of even one case where the EPA has not fudged, biased,
exagerated, or taken the scientific evidence out of context? Perhaps
you're better informed than me on such political subjects, but I cannot
remember even a single case where the EPA conclusions did not
significantly depart from the scientifically researched facts rather
than being based on their own rather bizarre political agenda.
The Radon thing is similiar to the case EPA, FAA, or some other federal
agency made claim against smoking aboard airplanes. The motivation was
entirely political and was lobbied by the airline industry, because
simply by prohibitiing smoking on airplanes, the air replacement rate
could be sharply reduced. Since replacement air cost fuel the to heat
the external air to acceptable cabin temperaturs, a significant fuel
savings resulted to the airlines by prohibiting smoking.
On the downside, recirculation of ambinet air inside the cabin spreads
microbes thoughout the aircraft, which is today why many people become
ill only a few days after a having taken a long airline flight. One can
only hope that among the passangers is no one with antibiotic immune
TB, or worse.
Only the naive believe that federal regulation are created out of
totally altruistic intent -- Where in fact most are created as the
result of special interest lobby groups operating out of purely profit
Ask yourself this question: Who profited most from the anti-smoking
legislation and resulting lawsuits. Dhuhh, not surprisingly Hillary
Clinton's brother, Hugh Rodham. How many live did this legislation
save? My guess would be none, although a fun and profitable time was
had by all its promoters! My gues is that both Hugh and Hillary smoke,
but they are very guarded in doing so. Just my guess, simply because I
don't know anyone in a high pressure, responsible position that doesn't
smoke, at least in secret.
Then sanity check on any new legislation or regulatory restrictions is
first to determine who would profit and who would loose if such
legislation or regulations to be enacted. In most cases you'll find
that who would benefit most are the promoters and supporters of such
legislation or regulations. Secondary benefits, if any at all, are
generally pretty accidental.
While I am not particularly interested in the drug culture within the
US, the Harrison Narcotics Tax Act, 1914 stands out in my mind as the
perfect worst case example of personal profit interests impacting
federal legislation. This particular bill was heavily lobbied for by
the major ethical drug producers in the US, to simply increase their
profit margins by eliminating the then existing over-the-counter and
street competition. Then end result was to create an uncontrolled,
$400,000,000,000 (if I have that right it should be $400 billion)
illicit drug market that exist in the US through today. Similarly, the
Volstead Act, promoted by some well meaning but ill informed religous
enthusiasts, let to the creation of major crime syndicants such as
those of Al Capone and others.
Is it simply me, or are the people of this country so ill-educated that
they really don't realize this is how things have worked out in the
above directions, for at lest the 20th century. After all, how ignorant
can America be?
Hopefully, one of the role of the Internet, and its potential will to
be during the 21st century, to eliminate this sort of ignorance, which
if anything should put the Gypsy Scams and their fear promotions in to
their coffins and be buried forever. Hopefully, this will include the
govenment endorsed scams as well.
That person expresses true wisdom!... REPEAT THAT OFTEN!
Green shits take notice:
----- The green Bible & its enviro Theology that says: -------
= "It doesn't matter what is true ... it only matters what people
= believe is true ... -- Paul Watson, Greenpeace, and ......
= "A lot of environmental [sci/soc/pol] messages are simply not
= accurate. We use hype." -- Jerry Franklin, Ecologist, UoW, and...
= "We make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little
= mention of any doubts we may have [about] being honest."
= -- Stephen Schneider (Stanford prof. who first sought fame as
= a global cooler, but has now hit the big time as a global warmer)
-------- The 40 year old scheme of the Green Scam ----------
Modern, attributal definitions of enviro classifications:
========= enviro Class (1) --- the Green shit(s):
...are the ones who advocate, promote, support, legalize,
institute and extort the permit charges, the user fees, the
enviro surtaxes and the CO2/Carbon tax, all reflected in
HIGHER PRICES of goods and services!, ...and being
responsible for much of the OUT-SOURCING!
========= enviro Class (2) -- the Green turd(s):
... are the ones who are recipients and beneficiaries from
the lootings of (1), directly or indirectly.
========= enviro Class (3) -- the Little green idiot(s):
.. are the unpaid, well-meaning ones, in "environmental
groups" who think they do something for the "environment",
when in fact they are only the enablers and facilitators for
(2) who are harvesting the green $$$ that (1) has extorted.
A lot of class 1 & 2 enviros are calling themselves no
longer "environmentalists" but *"conservationists"* now,.
such as foundations, corporats, lawyers, celebs & RICH fat
cats who are conserving those lands for future generations:
Their OWN descendants only, of course, while all the little
green idiots do the hard and dirty work for them & pay!
---------- Views after 40 years of green criminality --------
=1= In June 05 USDA/FDA aired/published that they will
no longer endorse green products that are labeled "organic"!
=2= The FBI and Homeland Security/DHS has declared
enviros to be the number one terrorist threat to the nation.
=3= Myriads of good, rational & HARD WORKING folks had
enough from environmentalism and began to raise their voices
as did E. Gisin in
wherein it sounds like this: "Fucking greens should be shot...."
...and as an encore do never forget that
= Pure politics is driving dozens of public health issues, notably
= global warming, green shit, tobacco & meds now. Great lies
= in service for/of a "noble cause" do trump now truth & fact.
= Enviros use the same great lies of yore. Only the color changed.
= (A) Environmentalism is Communism in Green...
= (B) Environmentalism is Nazism in Green...
= (C) Environmentalism makes the Poor poorer and the Rich richer.
Environmentalism is nothing but green pornography,
pimped by green orgs like NRDC, Sierra club, Green Piss, etc.,
whored and hookered by green bureaucrats from EPA down,
johned, pole- and lapdanced by the hordes of little green idiots
and paid for by extorting the money from hardworking taxpayers.
Environmentalism is a malignant, parasitic socio-pathology,
promulgated by opportunistic ex-communists and misogynic,
unemployable perverts, who have succeeded in generating
enviro taxes, permit fees and user surcharges, from which these
useless, enviro-pushers and eco-fanatics draw their welfare checks
and demand grants to generate more enviro shit.
ahahahaha... BTW, do copy and use these above clarifications
often and profusely. There is no permit charge or user fee
associated with it. and nobody will accuse you of plagiarism.
It's a free public service announcement... Use it. Have fun!
I just wonder if the air in your basement was regularly removed by a
furnace or a dryer? Was the test done during the heating season? Our oil
furnace is used for short periods during the winter (wood heat) and my
wife primarily dries cloths outside so our basement air could accumulate
If that is the case sounds like a physicist could ge a grant to study
this if it has not already.
I took their word what the recommended level should be and my results if
correct were higher then they should be. It probably would have made
sense to use two different companies to see if they got similar results.
Thanks for your time.
I'd guess not. Realize that you simply got sucked up
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