Kathryn's Blog


Don't Mess with the Radon Test

Don't Mess with the Radon Test


Recently, I had a listing in which a buyer asked his home inspector to run a Radon test. The home had a two-car garage under the house.  The inspector placed the Radon test device in the portion of the basement that was not garage.  It was an active test device, which provides hourly readings of Radon in the air.  I instructed my seller to keep the basement closed up as much as possible for the entire test period.

Two days later, the inspector returned to retrieve the Radon test kit. The inspector began to print out the results in my presence.  Over the course of 48 hours, there were two points in which the Radon level was much higher than the remaining time of the test.


line graph
(Results graph similar to that of Radon test, not actual.)

The seller was home, and the inspector showed her the graph of the results.  Red-faced, she confessed that she may have "forgotten" to close the garage door when leaving the house for those two periods of time. 

Was she was trying to influence the test? I'll never know, but by leaving the garage door up, she had created a draft effect. This had drawn more Radon gas into the testing area!

Unfortunately, her faulty memory cost her a $1000 credit so the buyer could install a Radon mitigation system. Had the seller remembered to close the garage door, the Radon test would have been well within EPA accepted limits for Radon.

Lesson:  Don't Mess with the Radon Test!

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Text and photos copyright Kathryn J. Acciari unless otherwise noted. 
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Kathryn Acciari, Brand Ambassador

Century 21 Real Estate LLC
175 Park Avenue
Madison NJ 07940

Serving Brokers, Owners, and Agents Throughout New England

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Blog: Real Estate Blog
Twitter: @kacciari

Comment balloon 4 commentsKathryn Acciari • October 12 2016 03:32PM


That is cheap for that kind of a system...I just had a client kick out $8000 for a system

Posted by William Feela, Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No. (WHISPERING PINES REALTY) almost 4 years ago

That's a lesson learned the hard way. I never leave my garage door open unless I'm planning to go back outside right away.

Posted by Donna Foerster, Metro Denver Real Estate Assistant (HomeSmart Realty Group) almost 4 years ago

William: $8000! I have never heard of a mitigation system at that price.


Donna: Yes, tough lesson. Not the first, I am certain!

Posted by Kathryn Acciari, Brand Ambassador and Business Coach (Century 21 Real Estate) almost 4 years ago

it's not something we test for here unless the buyer is from the north and insists.  Have never had high readings in all the times the test has been done.

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) almost 4 years ago