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New Study on Radon Health Effects

More health effects of Radon gas.

A new article has come out to show that Radon exposure has links to other blood cancers, such as leukemia. Here is a link to this article.
New Radon Article

Please share this information with anyone who has not tested their home yet for Radon. Every home should be tested.
For years we have known that Radon causes lung cancer. Customers always ask me if Radon can cause any other health concerns. I have always said we suspect that it does, because it is a form of radiation, but we don’t know for sure. Now there is more information pointing to the fact that Radon can cause other health effects.

Some types of skin cancer have also been linked to Radon exposure. And no studies have been concluded but scientists were looking in Alzheimer’s disease and links to Radon. The reason, while breathing air in through the nostrils as it passes by near the brain if Radon is shooting off radiation is it changing the brain?

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Radon Training

This is why proper training is so important.

Received a call yesterday. A couple is selling their home, and needed a Radon system. The first company made several trips, used 2 inch pipe, seven suction points and the biggest fan he could get. Still testing in the 20’s. 2nd company replaced pipe with 3 inch, eliminated 2 suction points, and pulled out gravel to make an actual suction point. Same fan. Still testing in the 20’s. Company now plans on installing some drain tile under slab. Did I say there was gravel under it? I asked potential customer if either company did any smoke tests or communication tests with a hand held electronic device. No, they didn’t. So these companies ideas is to Swiss cheese a slab and put on the biggest air fan possible and keep on charging the customer and hope something works but never do any diagnostic tests to see what’s causing the system to not lower levels.

When my manager Brandon arrived he could hear the air leaking at the cold joint. We did a smoke test, some caulking and then started a new test. Levels came down below 4. We saved the customer quite a bit of money by doing the simplest of tests. I think the first two companies should return some money to the customer.

Both companies are certified. This is why we need to require longer hands on training before someone gets certified to mitigate Radon.

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Did you see our last blog?

Did you see my last blog. I just addressed something like this happening.

We were called to check on a system installed by another company because it was not lowering the Radon levels sufficiently. The installing company would not come back unless they were paid up front. Nice. (This goes hand in hand with my last blog) We made an appointment to come back to the home to basically fix everything on it. Look at the quality of work that is being done out there. Using hole saw biscuits to prop up a pipe for pitch? I’m sorry for the strong language here, but this IMG_0347

IMG_5913is just crap. How can you install something like this and take someones money. My brain does not function that way. My installers would never do this because they are trained properly, and would be fired if they did. If you run out of studs to use, you make a trip to the store and get some more. Also, the piping. Clearly not schedule 40. The 90 degree turn is way too sharp and greatly reduces air flow. Not to mention the flimsy pipe will produce a lot more noise. We will post more pics after the system is fixed.

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Paying too little or Paying too much.

Paying to little or paying too much?

I went to a builders show a few weeks ago, as I am also a licensed home builder. Side note… I have built and sold 2 homes in my first year. I am starting my 3rd home in a few weeks. My ultimate goal is to build 20 homes per year and each one will have active Radon systems in them. They will also be very energy efficient and comfortable.
Anyway, at this show a quote was shared by John Ruskin. Here is his quote.

“It’s unwise to pay too much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When
you pay too much, you lose a little money – that’s all. When you pay
too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you
bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The
common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a
lot – it can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well
to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will
have enough to pay for something better.”

― John Ruskin

You can Google John Ruskin. He has more quotes if would like to read them.

The one thing I always strive to do is put in the best possible Radon system for the best possible price while maintaining that quality. If I can build the business, have properly trained employees install the systems, and buy in bulk we can have a good mix of both. I accept that we are not always the least expensive system. That’s not the bottom line here. Just offer the best price you while maintaining the highest quality.

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Happy New Year 2016!

Happy new year! 2015 went by so fast. There were some major events for us in 2015. First,we added our third office in Sun Prairie, WI. We hired another installer for our office in Menomonee Falls. And I built and sold my first spec house in Neenah. And yes, it has an active Radon system in it. It was also a record setting year for us. We installed over 1500 Radon systems. Which is fantastic. My ultimate goal is to get to 2000 per year. Lastly, I was voted to the AARST national board and appointed communications chair person. Very grateful for all that happened this past year. Our main goal is still to provide the best quality systems at a reasonable price. And then to back up our work in case anything happens. All we have is our reputation. I intend on keeping it a good one. We all hope you have a great and happy 2016!

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“They Made Me Cry!”

They mad her cry?

I can’t believe I am writing this. We received a call yesterday from a woman who had another company test her home for Radon. The test came back elevated. She knew she had a passive Radon system installed when the home was constructed. So, she only needed a simple conversion of the passive system to make the Radon system active to lower the Radon level. She began to ask the company questions about how this would be done and what if any issues could possibly arise. She admitted that she did not know much about Radon or Radon systems or construction. For whatever reason this other company basically told her she was stupid, belittled her and just plain made her feel terrible. When she called us and started to explain to us what happened, she began to cry. We promised her that the general public did not know much about Radon, that she was not alone,  and that we were here to help. After our conversation, we booked her conversion. I just can’t believe a company that is out there to get business, no matter what industry it is, would treat a potential customer so poorly. We treat everyone the same here, no matter your position in life or your knowledge of Radon. Feel free to ask questions. I will get you the right answers. I will only make you cry because you will be so happy with our work.

 

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Researching Radon Companies Pays Off

Researching Radon companies is a good idea.

An employee from the Fond du Lac county health department called us a few weeks ago regarding a Radon System. Her daughter recently purchased a home and needed a Radon system. This health department is also a regional Radon office for Wisconsin. This employee called us after she had done extensive researching on which company they would like to install their daughters system. I am proud that they chose us to be that company. I believe in quality from the top down and from the bottom up. Each system has to be installed as if our business future depended on it, because it really does. And then be there, and back up the system if anything should happen down the road. If you are in the market for a Radon system, please check us out and really compare apples to apples. Hopefully you will reach the same conclusion as this customer did.

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This is Why Radon is so Dangerous

This is why Radon is so dangerous.

I recently attended the Semi-annual Wisconsin state Radon conference in Green Lake. One of the speakers was a woman who has survived Lung Cancer. What grabbed my attention so much is the events that led to her finding out she had lung cancer. To make a long story short her nagging cough had grown into coughing up blood. Her doctor gave her a chest screening and it came out OK. They saw nothing wrong. So, he sent her home. He thought it would just go away. Well, her coughing up blood got much worse. Finally the doctor agreed to dig deeper and had another doctor perform a scoping of the throat, and lungs. While doing this they found a bleeding tumor that was cancerous. This was lung cancer, but hers was very high in the bronchial area. When Radon does affect you it can be in the bronchial and trachea area which may not show up in a normal chest scan. Radon is dangerous folks and should not be taken lightly. It is a slow acting affect, which is almost bad if you think about it. If Radon caused immediate damage and quick affects every home would be tested and treated if needed. With the colder months coming it will be easier to test for Radon. Do your family a favor this holiday season and give them the best gift possible, peace of mind. Test your home today. Don’t let this dangerous disease creep up on you.

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We’re Growing and Proud of it.

We’re growing. It has been a very busy summer. This is another record year for us. With three offices now, we have installed more radon systems than ever. I have to compliment our staff. Everyone here tries to do the best job they can. I get good comments on a pretty regular basis. I am getting more and more customers, sellers included, telling me they don’t just want the least expensive system, but a good quality one as well. That is my goal. Actually I want to install the best quality system, and give the best price on top of that. With more volume of systems we can achieve that. I can pass on the savings of buying fans, piping, fittings onto the customer. So, to everyone who has used us, I thank you. And if you have not yet, please do. You will be happy you did. And we will keep on growing.

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This is Fraud! No doubt about it.

Fraud. How can anyone live with themselves doing this? A few weeks ago I was asked to evaluate a Radon system that did not seem to be functioning properly. This was for a home that was being sold. It was not our system. The company that installed the system wanted $150 to come take a look at their own system, so the sellers agent gave us a call.

Upon viewing the system we discovered that absolutely no air was coming out of the vent pipe. Fraud.  We then discovered that the fan installed was a RadonAway RP140, which is a very weak fan. It is a good fan, but should only be used on very low resistant situations. It maxes out at 1″ of vacuum draw, which means it would not move any air at that level. That means Radon levels would not be lowered in that case. We then removed the piping from the slab. There was clay directly under the slab, no gravel, no drain tile. There was no suction point either. Simply a hole cut through the slab with a pipe inserted into the clay. A very high resistance situation, which will not allow any airflow. Fraud.

With the clay material directly under the slab, the RP140 (weakest fan on market) fan model installed on the piping, and the resistance on the fan, this system had NO Chance of ever working or lowering the Radon levels. Simply fraud. But somehow the post test originally performed showed the levels had dropped. I thought we better run another test to see where the levels are at. Low and behold the levels were virtually the same as before the Radon system was installed. The homeowner said the system/resistance was the same the day the system was installed and when they moved in.

I then asked the agent if they had record of the initial post test performed by the installing company, because he was the original agent when the home first sold 3 yrs. ago. He did. The results were cut and pasted onto a word document, not on the original printout. When a test is downloaded from a Radon monitor it produces its own text document. It should always be sent as an attachment. There is no reason to cut and paste it, unless your want to commit fraud. Also if you look at the first post printout, it looks like the numbers were manipulated. There is no Protocol average shown which is printed out automatically. If it’s not on there it had to be physically taken off on purpose, or they forgot to put one back on after manipulating the printout.  If you look at the initial test and our first test, you can see how the tests are printed out in 12 hour blocks. Lastly, if the system was actually working, why would levels go up the last 24 hrs of the test? Compare our post test printout. Levels go down and stay down. I think the first 24 hrs numbers on their test were changed on the computer to get a fictional low average. All of these tests were performed by a Sun Nuclear model 1027. They should all look the same, all have the same format, but with different test numbers.

I have been told by more than one agent that this company has claimed to have never had to go back to fix a system because they are so good. Well, this could explain why. If I was willing to commit fraud on the numbers I wouldn’t have to go back either. But, if you are in this business you will have homes that don’t pass right away, and will need additional work. It is inevitable. You just deal with it, make adjustments until levels get below 4. Some older homes are hard to fix.

We ended up fixing the system and were able to get levels down below 2. It is in my opinion, and I think the physical evidence speaks for itself, that the installing company manipulated the actual post test to show levels below 4.  This was a certified company in the Green Bay/ Appleton area. They were willing to let a family live in a home with elevated Radon levels for 3 years. Obviously they don’t believe that Radon can actually harm you.  My advice is to anyone out there with a system installed in the last 1-8 yrs is to perform a Radon test to ensure that you actually have low Radon levels. If this company did this once, they certainly have done it on other homes.

Attached is the original test printout which came in at 7.4 from a home inspector. Then directly under it the post test from the installing company, which came in at 3.7. Click on the document so you can open it up and see it clearly. Then, our first test of the home, with the system operating and our post test after the repairs were made.  Notice how the tests printout on the initial test and our tests compared to the installing companies printout. Buyer beware of companies willing to commit fraud!

 

 

 

Test Comparrisons 001

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our initial Test

Radon Specialists of WI Inc
1072 Rock Ledge LN
Neenah WI 54956

————————
Professional
Radon Monitor

Start Date : 5/13/2015
Start Time : 10:30:00 AM
End Date : 5/15/2015
End Time : 09:30:00 AM
Serial # : 31511075
Location : Basement

Data in pCi/l
Time Interval 1 Hr

2.1    3.2   3.2
10.6 4.7    4.7
7.3   4.7    8.0
6.5   8.7    7.6

6.9   9.1    5.1
8.0   5.1    7.6
10.2 6.9   5.8
6.9   7.6   4.0

8.0    6.5   5.5
4.7    5.8   9.1
11.0  6.1   6.5
6.1    4.3   9.5

6.1    6.9   6.1
6.5    9.1   4.3
5.8    5.8   9.8
9.1    8.0

Overall Avg.= 6.8
EPA Protocol Avg.= 6.9
Our post test

Radon Specialists of WI Inc
1072 Rock Ledge LN
Neenah WI 54956

————————
Professional
Radon Monitor

Start Date : 5/29/2015
Start Time : 11:00:00 AM
End Date : 6/01/2015
End Time : 11:45:00 AM
Serial # : 80599143
Location : Basement

Data in pCi/l
Time Interval 1 Hr

3.2   3.2   4.7
2.9   5.5   2.1
2.5   2.1   1.0
1.4    1.0  1.8

1.8    1.4  2.1
0.0   1.4   0.7
1.0   1.8   1.8
1.4   0.7   1.8

2.1   1.0   1.0
1.4   1.4   2.1
1.4   2.5   1.0
0.7   0.7   1.0

0.3  2.5  1.4
1.4  0.3  1.0
2.5  2.5  0.3
0.7  0.7  2.1

1.4  0.7   0.7
0.7  0.3  1.0
1.0  0.7  1.4
0.0  0.7  1.4

2.1  1.8  1.0
1.4  0.0  1.4
0.7  0.0  0.7
1.0  0.7  1.0

0.7  1.0

Overall Avg.= 1.4
EPA Protocol Avg.= 1.3

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