Is A Radon Test Necessary In Texas?

Radon is considered an environmental and health threat and is commonly detected in homes and other enclosed spaces. In some parts of the country, radon tests are a required part of a home inspection. Testing for radon is not required in Texas, however, and most people choose to skip it. Should you? Read this so you can make an informed decision on whether you want a radon test or not.

Radon is a colorless, odorless, naturally-occrring radioactive gas that is emitted from the ground. It is more present in some regions than others and considered a carcinogen that requires intervention when present in greater amounts. The EPA estimates there are approximately 15,000 deaths per year due to radon-caused lung cancer, and the American Lung Association calls radon the second leading cause of lung cancer deaths.

While it is impossible to prevent radon from seeping out of the soil, it is possible to prevent it from building up in enclosed spaces. Radon remedies include increasing natural ventilation in a structure, adding additional ventilation, and sealing the parts of a structure that are below the ground level. Radon is more of an issue for homes with basements and crawlspaces, but it can be found collecting in any structure that is built on or into the ground.

Texas is in a region that is classified by the U.S. Geological Survey, the official directive on radon and radon testing, as having a low to moderate radon risk. It should still be noted, however, that homes with excessively high radon levels have been recorded in every state in the country including Texas, and many that exceed the EPA’s safety recommendations.

What does this mean for your home inspection? While a radon test is not required in Texas the way it is in some states, doing one anyway could be useful, especially if you or anyone in your family is at risk for lung cancer. The test will add a bit of expense to your home inspection bill, but considering the cost of a new home and the potential for lifelong health issues, some consider it a few hundred dollars well spent. Most tests in Texas will show minimal radon exposure, but the possibility of a higher test result is always there.

Hopefully, this information will help you decide if you need a radon test with your home inspection. Talk to us at TPI, LLC about radon, and whether doing a test is a good idea for your prospective home purchase!