Should I be worried about Radon?

Radon may be one of the things greeting you when you walk in the front door and you might not ever know it

/ Colby Gallagher

October 15-21 is Radon awareness week -- but many people are unaware of what this dangerous gas is and how it can affect you.

Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that occurs during the breakdown of uranium and the soil and earth.

This gas can come into your home without warning and is the second leading cause of lung cancer says Ginger Bennett, a Radon educator with the University of Georgia.

Bennett says Radon levels aren't regulated in Georgia therefore builders, realtors and contractors don't have to check for it when selling property.

To ensure your home doesn't have Radon in the air, there are do-it-yourself test kits available at Home Improvement stores.

Flo Renau, a Home Depot representative says the kit is under $10 and is simple to use. To make sure you get a correct reading, close all windows and doors for 12 hours.

Then take the caps off the two test kits and allow them to sit for 96 hours or 4 days.

Then the kit must be sent to a lab to be read and analyzed for $30 -- a price Renau says is worth knowing your family is safe.

If your home tests positive for radon, there are ventilation systems available that filter the air before it comes into your home from the ground.

These ventilation systems can cost around $1,500 to $2,500 but Bennett says when you compare the price to the cost of lung cancer, it's immeasurable.