Frequently Asked Questions

Testing & Procedures

In most cases it is not necessary to test for radon in water. Generally, you should only test your water if you receive a high test result from your first Short Term test. If you receive your water from a municipal supply the chances are very low that you have radon in your water. For more information, please refer to our flowchart.

For Radon in Water, you will need to capture a sample of your water in the sampling vial. Take the water from as close to the water source as possible. You will want to ensure that the water goes through as few filters and aerators as you can; if you’re able to, disconnect any filter or aerators from the water source, as these release radon into the air and skew your test results. View some more detailed instructions for the Radon in Water test by clicking here!

For Short Term: the test officially stops when the radon sampler gets sealed up in the return mailer envelope (along with your info sheet). Please be sure to seal the kit completely, using tape if necessary. First Alert, LabTech, and Kidde kits use Short Term Radon samplers.
For Long Term (Alpha Track): the test officially stops when the test device gets sealed up in the return mailer envelope (along with your info sheet). Please be sure to seal the kit completely, using tape if necessary.

  • Please be sure that you have exposed your kit for the proper amount of time! You can view our instructions for your specific kit by clicking here.

Be sure to read the instructions about sampler placement before starting the test! This will help you understand how to conduct the test properly. Instructions are on the back of the information sheet that was included in your kit.

  • For both Short Term and Long Term test kits, testing begins once the radon sampler is exposed to air. To begin testing you will need to open the plastic bag and pull out the sampler for placement.
  • Immediately place the sampler in a location that fits the guidelines listed in the instructions.
  • Don’t forget to write the start dates and times on your info sheet! The testing times and dates are important for our lab calculations, and without them we cannot obtain results.

You should place your radon sampler on the lowest livable level on your house at least 2 – 7 feet above the floor. Make sure that it is on a flat surface at least 6 inches away from any wall or large object (anything large enough to impede air flow). You are also able to hang your sampler from the ceiling if you cannot set it on a surface within the 2-7 ft. testing window.

  • Avoid areas and rooms with high humidity. If the charcoal absorbs too much moisture, your test could result in an error (this is also why we recommend a 48-hour exposure). Definitely do not place it anywhere where it could get wet!
  • Make sure that the paper side is facing upwards! This allows air to reach the charcoal and is necessary to obtain accurate results.
  • Typically you should place it near the central portion of the room, but it is fine to place it elsewhere. Gas permeates and fills the volume of space that it’s in, so placing it on one side of the room versus the other shouldn’t be an issue!
  • For real estate transactions, you should place two radon samplers four inches apart, following the other guidelines listed above. Laws can vary by state, so ask your state radon contact about what laws are in place for your state!

For tests being run in areas that have high humidity, the best thing to do is run your kit for the minimum exposure time – 48 hours. This greatly reduces the chances of your kit absorbing too much moisture for us to get a result. If you’d like, you can also run a dehumidifier during testing as well. We do not recommend running any fans/vents

Usually, one test kit is sufficient! All our radon samplers (First Alert, LabTech, Kidde, and Alpha Energy) are good for levels up to 2,000 sq. ft. This does not refer to your entire house square footage; just the level or floor of your home that you are testing! If you are wanting to find out the radon levels for different floors or rooms of your home, then you will need more than one test kit. Each area you want to test needs its own radon sampler!

We recommend testing in the lowest livable level of your house (usually the basement), but it could be a bit up to your preference! Here’s why we recommend the basement:

  • Radon sits a little heavier than the air, so the highest concentration of radon is usually found in the lowest level of the building. By testing in the basement area you are basically testing for the “worst case scenario” of your home’s radon levels. It’s very rare that a house with low radon levels in the basement has high radon levels in the above floors!
  • Radon naturally occurs in the soil, so by testing the lowest level you are also testing closer to the most likely entry point of radon gas.
  • Most real estate transactions require that the lowest livable level is tested. This includes a level that could be lived in or modified to live in, so even an unfinished basement. Tests done for legal transactions or other legal reasons usually require specific testing directions; make sure to follow whatever procedures are set forth for your particular situation. You can find some more info here.