Winter brings families closer as they spend more time indoors together, but that indoor time can lead to a significant increase in dangerous radon gas exposure. Testing your home for radon gas during the winter is an important part of keeping your family safe. The lack of airflow and increased time indoors that many families experience all winter long can greatly increase the levels and exposure time to radon gas, creating a danger in homes all over the world.
Why Is Radon More Dangerous In the Winter?
* Homes Are Sealed – Radon levels go up in the winter because people close up their homes to keep out the cold. When your windows are closed and sealed for winter and air stops moving in and out of your home on a regular basis, radon gas has a chance to build up with no way to escape. This sealing makes winter the most dangerous time of the year when you’re worried about what may be leaking into your home. Carbon monoxide deaths go up during the winter, and silent radon exposure that can lead to lung cancer goes up right alongside it.
* People Stay Indoors – Winter months bring inclement weather in with them, leaving your family stuck indoors when they would otherwise be out. When you stay in your home for the winter, you increase the exposure time you and your family have around anything in the air inside your home. Radon gas mitigation buildup is higher in the winter, and you and your family are spending more time in the house breathing it.
How Does Radon Get In During the Winter?
* Cracks – Homeowners often have small cracks in the floor and walls of their home that end up being vulnerable to the elements. Radon present in the dirt around and under your home can leech in through cracks and joints throughout the house. While this radon would simply disappear into the atmosphere outdoors, it builds up in the air inside your home when windows are closed and areas are weatherproofed for winter.
* Gaps And Cavities – The gaps under your floor and in the walls can be a simple vector for radon gas looking for a way into your home. Radon built up in the dirt around and under your house can seep in through the external openings and cracks in your siding, getting caught in the insulating gaps between your home’s exterior and interior. This gas will slowly leak into the living areas of your home, exposing you and your family to danger. The sealed atmosphere of most homes during winter makes it easier for radon gas to seep in and get stuck.
* Concrete Foundation – Concrete is a porous material, and radon gas can pass through the concrete foundation because of this. The radon gas is small enough to pass through even the smallest of voids and openings, even small enough that they may not be visible without magnifying equipment.