Many customers have expressed a desire for us to check their Radon system from time to time to make sure everything is running properly, kind of like a furnace check up.
The fan comes with a five year manufacturer warranty and we offer a lifetime warranty on the rest of our system. With over 6,000 systems installed to-date, we’ve only run into two situations not covered by warranty: The vent pipe can become covered with ice during the winter, and bug larvae can accumulate on the fan fins, throwing off their balance, in the summer. Neither of these issues can be accounted for under warranty because neither is a manufacturing or installation related issue.
Moisture venting from the vent pipe can freeze rapidly from very cold temperatures and wind blowing across it. This can cause the vent pipe to be covered with a frost cap, which blocks the air flow. When this happens, the U-tube in the basement shows a 0-0 reading, meaning no air or Radon is being vented. This can cause the fan to overheat, which will cause the fan to switch off, not switching back on again until the fan has cooled down. Once the fan turns off, moisture in the pipe can fall down into the fan and freeze, preventing the fan from working at all. Previously, your options were to remove the frost cap yourself or to pay us to come out and do it for you.
In the last year or so, a strange type of bug larvae (a type of millipede) has been prevalent in northeast Wisconsin. It lives deep in the soil, about the level of the basement slab. Because the Radon system pulls air and moisture toward the suction point, these bug larvae can be pulled up the pipe and accumulate on the bottom side of the fan fins. When this happens, it can throw off the balance of the fan, causing it to get loud and possibly fail prematurely. Spraying for bug larvae does not help because the system will suck the chemicals out with the Radon. Putting a screen under the fan won’t work because it just gets plugged up, overheating the fan and shutting it off. We’ve been charging $150 to replace the fan (if it is ruined) plus a trip fee when this happens.
The best scenario is to have these situations prevented. Keep in mind that a non-warranty service call to inspect for or solve the problems described above will normally result in a minimum $75 service fee. But now you have a more affordable option.
Customers in the Fox Falley, Green Bay, Oshkosh and Fond du Lac areas can purchase a four-year maintenance package for a one-time fee of only $200. The maintenance includes an annual inspection to check your fan for bug larvae and to make sure all the clamps and pipes in your installation are tight and in good order. By catching problems early, we can likely avoid the problem.
This fee also covers an unscheduled trip once per year to clear or clean an ice cap from your vent, if needed. If your U-tube shows a 0-0 reading while you hear the fan running, and if it’s been very cold out, you’ll know you need this service. You may also see the vent covered with ice.
It’s great if you’ve never experienced either of these issues, but if you want peace of mind and would like us to check your system every year, this package is for you.
This service package will not guarantee against a premature fan failure, but will go a long way toward avoiding the situation. Also, keep in mind that all homes should be tested at least every two years to ensure that Radon levels have not risen. When we come to your home, we can offer you a home test kit for $25, which includes shipping and the lab fee.
For your convenience, payment may be made by phone with either a check or credit card. We’ll send you a paid receipt and our service agreement certificate showing when service was purchased and the date through which it is valid. This will give you proof of purchase to schedule up to one visit per year for four years.
All customers are responsible for calling us to arrange for a date and time to visit. We recommend that you try to schedule the visit on your installation anniversary. There should be an install date on the sticker by the U-tube. All customers remain responsible for checking the U-tube on the vent pipe to make sure their system is working properly. This should be done once per week, if possible.
If you have an older Radon system installed by a company no longer in business, we’d be happy to check your system for a fee, and will recommend any changes or upgrades you may need.
For more information on what to do if something just doesn’t seem right with your system, visit the “Is Your Radon System Working Properly? ” page.
As always, if you have additional questions, feel free to call or email.