Exterior of an Older Duplex

with at least one peculiarity:

What is a Certified Master Inspector?

We hope this video helps:

Testimonials? Here?

Did you know we have a testimonials page? It’s like this picture, but with words.

IMG_1973

Check it out here. 

How Radon Enters Homes

You’ve heard the horror stories: “Radon causes lung cancer.” Or, to be more precise, “Radon is linked with lung cancer.” It’s scary; so what can you do?

radon-entry-into-buildings

One easy step is to understand how radon enters homes. There are four ways:

  1. Designed openings in floors and walls: Windows and doors allow air into living spaces by design.
  2. Permeable flooring and wall materials: Materials such as concrete, brick, wood, vinyl, and tile are not airtight.
  3. Structural cracks: Defects in home appear over time, and settling cracks are common.
  4. Gaps in designed penetrations: Improperly sealed pipes, pits, and drains allow air into the living space.

You can deal with #3-4 with repairs, but #1-2 require a radon mitigation system in place.

Why Use a Different Radon Level?

Soils and underground rocks release a radioactive gas called radon, and this radon gas accumulates in indoor structures at various levels. Various studies have linked radon gas exposure with lung cancer and various lung diseases.

radon death comparison

Recently we’ve received a few questions regarding our radon testing standards. Referencing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the United States and the World Health Organization (WHO) in Switzerland and across the globe, one key difference emerges: recommended levels for remediation.

  • EPA = 4.0 picoCuries per liter (pCi/L)
  • WHO = 2.7 pCi/L (also noted as 100 becquerels per cubic meter)

When a testing organization like ours chooses to use the lower WHO standard, this can cause disagreement in local markets where the EPA standard is considered the norm.

Our reasoning for following WHO is threefold:

  1. The WHO is a more broadly researched and well-studied organization, drawing from over 7000 people working in 150 country offices.
  2. The stricter standard level (2.7 pCi/L) for remediation protects clients more than a more permissible standard level (4.0 pCi/L).
  3. The marginal benefit of relying on a the tighter standard is higher for the client. In essence, if we say a testing level of 2.9 pCi/L requires remediation, but another party disagrees, nothing is lost to our client.

For further research, consult the links above.

Safe Home Book

We have a new “Safe Home Book” featured on our CertifiedMasterInspector.org. Download, print, and use freely, with our compliments:

SHB cover

The Dangers of Radon

Radon is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that can be harmful if accumulated inside a building. There are two main ways of mitigating this problem, the passive and the active. In the passive method, a physical barrier is laid between the soil and the foundation and a vent pipe extending from the sub-slab up to the roof.

In active form, there is a setup of electric vent fan, vent pipe extending from sub slab to roof, sealed cracks in the foundation, and a system failure warning device. For detailed information about radon gas and its preventive methods go through this infographic from PropertEco.

propertecoinfographic-1

Garage Interiors

This older garage has storage, outlets, three doors, even a wood stove!

Garage Overhead Door

Here we test a garage overhead door for two safety features:

An Older Chimney and Improper Cricket

Here we inspect from a ranch roof and find an older chimney with an interesting diverter: