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                                                                                                              Building Radon Out
             Disclaimer
        Acknowledgements
The U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) strives to provide
accurate, complete, and useful
information.  However, neither EPA nor
any person contributing to the
preparation of this document makes
any warranty, express or implied, with
respect to the usefulness or
effectiveness of any information,
method, or process disclosed in this
material. Nor does EPA assume any
liability for the use of, or for damages
arising from the use of, any
information, method, or process
disclosed in this document.

Mention of firms, trade names, or
commercial products in this document
does not constitute endorsement or
recommendation for use.
Building Radon Out: A Step-By-Step
Guide on How to Build Radon-Resistant
Homes was developed by the Indoor
Environments Division in the Office of
Radiation and Indoor Air at the U.S.
Environmental  Protection Agency.  The
lead EPA staff on the document was
Paulina Chen.  Other staff contributing
to the development of this document
were: Greg Brunner, Brenda Doroski,
Gene Fisher, Matt  Hiester, Wendy
Kammer, Jennifer  Keller, Mike Rogers,
and David Rowson.

Much of the description of building
techniques in this  document is based
on training materials prepared by
Douglas Kladder of the Center for
Environmental  Research and
Technology,  Inc., including the book
Protecting Your  Home from Radon by
Kladder, Burkhart, and Jelinek.
Contributions from training sessions of
Dave Murane of Sanford Cohen and
Associates are also acknowledged.

In addition, EPA would like to gratefully
acknowledge the review and
contributions of Terry Brennan,
Camroden Associates; Robert Brown,
International Code Council; Thomas
Dickey, City of East Moline, Illinois;
Ken Ford, National Association of Home
Builders; Douglas  Kladder, Western
Regional Radon Training Center; and
Brad  Turk, Mountain West Technical
Associates.

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Table  of  Contents
                              5 E3uilding the Framework:  Introduction
                              6 Does It Make Sense To Build Homes Radon-Resistant?
                              9 Pigging Deeper: Questions and Answers
                              10 What Is Radon?
                              11 Is Radon a Significant Health Risk?
                              12 Is Radon a Problem In Homes?
                              13 Is There a Safe Level Of Radon?
                              14 How Does Radon Enter a House?
                              15 How Does Air Pressure Affect Radon Entry?
                              16 Does Foundation Type Affect Radon Entry?
                              17 What Can You Do To Reduce Radon New Homes?
                              18 What Are The Radon-Resistant Features?
                              20 Is There a Way To Test The Lot Before Building?
                              21 Would I Incur Liability By Installing The Features?
                              22 Should All New Homes Be Built Radon-Resistant?
                              23 EPA Map of Radon Zones
                              24 List of Zone 1 Counties

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27  Nuts and  [Jolts:  Installation Guide
     PZanrangr
 29  Answer The Question: To Intall Or Not To Install?
 30  Determine What Type Of System To Install
 32  Determine Vent Pipe Location And Size

 34  Installation
 35  Basement and Slab-On-Grade Construction: Sub-Slab Preparation
 36  Gravel
 38  Perforated Pipe
 40  Soil Gas Collection Mat
 42  Plastic Sheeting
 43  Seal Off And Label Riser Stub
 44  Lay Foundation
 45  Crawlspace  Construction
 51  Seal Openings
 55  Install Vent Pipe
 58  Sealing Ducts and Air Handling Units
 59  Install Electrical Junction Box
 60  Post-Occupancy Testing
 62  Activate the System

64  Sold: Working  With Homebuyers
 64  Get An Edge On The Market
 66  Make a Name For Yourself
 68  What To Tell Homebuyers

 72  Appendix A: Architectural Drawings
 76  Appendix B:  Glossary
 78  Appendix C:  For More Information
 80  Appendix D:  State Radon Contacts

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Preceeding Page Blank
               I3uilding  the  Framework:  Introduction
                                                             Should You E3e Concerned About
                                                             Radon?
                                                             Fes.
                                                             Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that
                                                             can cause lung cancer. Your
                                                             customers rely on you to construct a
                                                             high quality, safe home. You can easily
                                                             make a difference in how much radon
                                                             gets into the homes you build. By
                                                             using a handful of simple building
                                                             practices and common materials, you
                                                             can effectively lower the radon level in
                                                             the homes that you build, and build
                                                             most radon problems right out of the
                                                             house.

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Introduction
 Does  it  make  sense  to  build  homes  radon-resistant?
Absolutely. There are a number of
reasons why you should consider
installing radon-resistant features.
You can  gain a  marketing advantage
                                        Offering homes with radon-resistant
                                        features can attract more potential
                                        home buyers, which can translate into
                                        closing more sales and greater profits.
                                        Consumers are becoming more aware
                                        that radon is a health risk, and
                                        building a home with radon-resistant
                                        features could give buyers one more
                                        reason to purchase a home from you.
                                        About one in every six homes is being
                                        built radon-resistant in the United
                                        States every year, averaging about
                                        200,000 homes annually, according to
                                        annual surveys of home builder
                                        practices conducted by the National
                                        Association of Home Builders (NAHB)
                                        Research Center over the past decade.
                                        In high radon areas, about one in every
                                        three homes is built with the features.
                     Industry surveys continue to
                     demonstrate a rapidly growing market
                     for more energy-efficient,
                     environmentally-friendly, comfortable,
                     and healthy homes.  Radon-reduction
                     techniques are consistent with state-of-
                     the-art energy-efficient construction.
                     The features can also decrease
                     moisture and other soil gases entering
                     the home, reducing molds, mildews,
                     methane, pesticide gases, volatile
                     organic compounds, and other indoor
                     air quality problems. When using these
                     techniques, follow the Model Energy
                     Code (or other applicable energy codes)
                     for weatherization, which will result in
                     energy savings and lower utility bills for
                     the  homeowner.

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                                                                                                               Building Radon Out
   It is a good  investment for a
             home buyer
It is cheaper to install a radon-
reduction system during construction
than to go back and fix a radon problem
identified later. On average, installing
radon-resistant features during
construction costs about $350 - $500,
or even less if you already use some of
the techniques for moisture control or
energy efficiency.   (Many builders who
use the techniques have reported
actual costs of $100 or less.)  In
contrast, retrofitting an existing home
will typically cost between $800  and
$2500.
            It \e> effective

A basic radon reduction system, called
a passive sub-slab depressurization
system, effectively reduces radon levels
by an average of about 50% and, in
most cases, to levels below EPA's action
level.  An upgraded system, called an
active sub-slab depressurization
system, includes an in-line fan to
provide even further reductions.


       It \e simple to  install

All of the techniques and materials are
commonly used in construction. No
special skills or materials are required.
         Upgrading \e easy

After occupancy, all homes should be
tested for radon, even those built with
radon-resistant features.  EPA
recommends that homes with radon
levels at or above 4 picocuries per liter
of air (pCi/L) be fixed.   Homes with a
passive system can be upgraded to an
active system with the simple
installation of a special in-line fan to
further  reduce the radon level.
Typically, the passive system includes a
junction box in the attic to make the
future installation of the fan easy. This
upgrade is also used by some builders
to control moisture in basements and
crawlspaces.
                                                                                                                             7

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Digging Deeper: Questions and Answers
                                    This chapter digs deeper into some of
                                    the more commonly asked questions
                                    concerning radon-resistant new
                                    construction.
                                                    9

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Questions and Answers
What  Is  Radon?
                                          Radon is a radioactive gas. It comes
                                          from uranium and radium in soils,
                                          which can be found everywhere in the
                                          world. Uranium is present in rocks
                                          such as granite, shale, phosphate and
                                          pitchblende. Uranium breaks down to
                                          radium, which then decays into radon.
                                          This gas can easily move up through
                                          the  soil into the atmosphere. Natural
                                          deposits of uranium and radium, not
                                          man-made sources, produce  most of
                                          the  radon present in the air.

                                          Radon is in the soil and air everywhere
                                          in varying  amounts.

                                          People cannot see, taste, feel, or smell
                                          radon. There is no way to sense the
                                          presence of radon.
Radon levels are commonly expressed
in picocuries per liter of air (pCi/L),
where a picocurie is a measure of
radioactivity.
The national average of indoor radon
levels in homes is about 1.3 pCi/L.
Radon levels outdoors, where radon is
diluted, average about 0.4 pCi/L.
Radon in the soil can be drawn into a
building and can accumulate to high
levels.  Every building or home has the
potential for elevated levels of radon.
All homes should be tested for radon,
even those built with radon-resistant
features. EPA recommends taking
action to reduce indoor radon levels
when levels are 4 pCi/L or higher.
10

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                                                                                                    Building Radon Out
                                       Is  Radon  A  Significant Health   Risk?
When radon enters a home, it decays
into radioactive particles that have a
static charge, which attracts them to
particles in the air. These particles can
get trapped in your lungs when you
breathe. As the radioactive particles
break down further, they release bursts
of energy which can damage the DNA in
lung tissue. In some cases, if the lung
tissue does not repair the DNA
correctly, the damage can lead to  lung
cancer.
Not everyone exposed to elevated levels
of radon will develop lung cancer, but
your risk of getting radon-induced lung
cancer increases as your exposure to
radon increases (either because the
radon levels are higher or you live in
the home longer). Smokers who have
high radon levels in their homes are at
an especially high risk for getting
radon-induced lung cancer.
The evidence that radon causes lung
cancer is extensive and based on:
human data taken from studies of
underground miners carried out over
more than 50 years in five countries,
including the United States and
Canada; human data from studies in
homes in many different nations,
including the U.S. and Canada; and
biological and molecular studies.
   Radon \e classified ae a
Class A carcinogen (known to
  cause cancer in humans).

    Some other Class A
   carcinogens are arsenic,
   asbestos, and benzene.
                          Radon decay particles
                          are breathed into the
                          lungs
                              Energy released from
                              radon decay products
                                    damages DNA

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Questions and Answers
Is  Radon  A  Health  Problem  In  Homes?
   Radon is the second leading
    cause of lung cancer in the
          United States.

   Radon causes about 20,000
   lung cancer deaths per year.
The following is a sample of
organizations which state that radon is
a health threat in homes:

y U.S. Surgeon General
y American Medical Association
y American Lung Association
y Centers for Disease Control
y National Cancer  Institute
y National Academy of Sciences
y Environmental Protection Agency
The risk of developing lung cancer from
radon has been clearly demonstrated in
underground miners. Did you know
that the average lifetime radon
exposure for the general population is
about the same as the levels of
exposure at which increased risk has
been demonstrated in underground
miners?
A study released by the National
Academy of Sciences on February 19,
1998 called "The Health Effects of
Exposure to Indoor Radon" is the most
definitive accumulation of scientific
data on indoor radon. The report
concludes that radon causes 15,000 -
22,000 deaths per year, making it the
second leading cause of lung cancer in
the U.S. and a serious public health
concern.
        Have You  Heard Of
         Stanley Watras?

Stanley J. Watras was a construction
engineer at the Limerick nuclear power
plant in Pottstown, Pennsylvania.  One
day, on his way to work, he entered the
plant and set off the radiation monitor
alarms which help protect workers by
detecting exposure to radiation.  Safety
personnel checked him out, but could
not find the source of the radiation.
Interestingly, because the plant was
under construction at the time, there
was no nuclear fuel at the plant. They
discovered the source of radiation
exposure when Watras's home was
tested and was measured to have very
high radon levels (2,700 pCi/L).  After
installing a radon-reduction system,
radon levels in the home tested below
4 pCi/L.
12

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                                                                                                   Building Radon Out
There is no known safe level of radon.
As your exposure to radon is increased,
so is your risk for developing lung
cancer. Even radon levels below 4pCi/L
pose some risk.

Homes have been found with radon
levels above 20, 100, and in rare cases
even 2000 pCi/L. High indoor radon
levels have been found in every state.

EPA, the Surgeon General, the Centers
for Disease Control, and many other
health organizations recommend that
action be taken to reduce indoor radon
levels at or above 4.0 pCi/L, which is a
reasonably achievable level of radon in
homes using currently available cost-
effective techniques.

Radon is a significant risk. More
people die from lung cancer caused by
radon each year than from many other
highly publicized causes of death.
                                        \s There  A Safe  level  Of Radon?
Comparison of Death Kisks
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41 ,000



20,000


3,700



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                                                                  data from the National Safety Council, 1999
                                                                                                              13

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Questions and Answers
How  Does  Radon  Enter  A  House?
                -. .r. .-.-,   >; 
         1	1

Common Radon Entry Points
Four main factors drive radon entry
into homes.  All of these factors exist
in most homes throughout the country.

1.  Uranium is present in the soil
nearly everywhere in the United States.

2.  The soil is permeable enough to
allow radon to migrate into the home
through the slab, basement or
crawlspace.
3.  There are pathways for the radon to
enter the basement, such as small
holes, cracks, plumbing penetrations,
or sumps.  All homes have radon entry
pathways.

4.  An air pressure difference between
the basement or crawlspace and the
surrounding soil draws radon into the
home.
14

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                                                                                                      Building Radon Out
                      How  Does  Air  Pressure  Affect  Radon   Entry?
The air pressure in a house is generally
lower than in the surrounding air and
soil, particularly in the basement and
foundation levels. This difference in
pressure causes a house to act like a
vacuum, drawing air containing radon
and other soil gases in through
foundation cracks and other openings.
Some of the replacement air comes
from the underlying soil and can
contain radon.

One reason why this pressure
difference occurs is  because exhaust
fans remove air from inside the house.
When this air is exhausted, outside air
enters the house to  replace it. Another
cause for a pressure difference is that
warm air rises and will leak from
openings in the upper portion of the
house when temperatures are higher
indoors than outdoors.  This condition,
known as "stack effect," causes
unconditioned replacement air to enter
the lower portion of the house.
Mechanical systems, such as the
furnaces or central air conditioners,
may also contribute to the difference in
air pressure.  In areas with very short
mild winters, mechanical systems can
                         Warm air rises up
                         and out through
                        leaks in the building
                          envelope. Air Is
                         also drawn out by
                           mechanical
                          ventilation (e.g.
                        bathroom fans and
                        clothes dryers) and
                           combustion
                             exhaust.
be the dominant driving force.  Air
handlers and leaky return ducts can
not only draw in radon, they can also
distribute it throughout a home.
      Replacement air enters
         the house by
       infiltration in lower
      levels.  Soil gases are
       a\so drawn Into the
      home where the house
      contacts the ground.
                                                                                                                  15

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Questions and Answers
Does  Foundation  Type Affect  Radon  Entry?
Because radon can literally be sucked
into a home, any home can potentially
have a radon problem. All conventional
house construction types have been
found to have radon levels exceeding
the action level of 4 pCi/L.
basement
   Radon can enter
   through floor-to-wall
   joints and control
   joints and cracks in
   the slab.
         Slab-On-Grade

             Radon can enter a
             home regardless of
             whether or not there is
             a basement. Slabs
             built on grade can
have just as many openings to allow
radon to enter as do basements.
                                               Crawlspace
                               Manufactured Homes
                                                   The vacuums that
                                                   exist within a home
                                                   are exerted on the
                                                   crawlspaces causing
                                                   radon and other
                                                   gases to enter the
                                     home from the earthen area below.
                                     Even with crawlspace vents, a slight
                                     vacuum is  still exerted on the
                                     crawlspace. Measurements in homes
                                     with crawlspaces have shown elevated
                                     radon levels.
                                        Unless these
                                        buildings are set up
                                        on piers without any
                                        skirting placed
                                        around them,
                                        interior vacuums can
                          cause radon to enter these types of
                          homes as well.
16

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                                                                                                     Building Radon Out
         What  Can  You  Do  To  Reduce Radon  In  New  Homes?
You can easily draw  radon away and help prevent radon from entering the
home by with the following basic steps.
                                        Can  we keep radon out by sealing
                                        the cracks?
You may already be employing many of
these techniques in the homes that you
build.  All of the techniques have
additional benefits associated with
them and they are very easy to install.

Install a sub-slab (or sub-membrane)
depressurization system
The objective of these systems is to
create a vacuum beneath the
foundation which is greater in strength
than the vacuum applied to the  soil by
the house itself.  The soil gases that are
collected beneath the home are  piped
to a safe location to be vented directly
outside.

Use mechanical barriers to soil gas entry
Plastic sheeting and foundation  sealing
and caulking can serve as barriers to
radon entry, entry of other soil gases,
and moisture.
Reduce stack effect
Sealing and caulking reduce stack effect,
and thus reduce the negative pressure in
lower levels in the home.

Install air distribution systems so that soil
air is not "mined"
Air-handling units and all ducts in
basements and, especially, in crawlspaces
should be sealed to prevent air, and
radon, from being drawn into the system.
Seamless ducts are preferred for runs
through crawlspaces or beneath slabs.
Any seams or joints  in ducts should be
sealed.
Sealing large cracks and openings is
important to do when you build a
home, both in the lower portion of the
home to reduce radon entry points,  and
in the upper portion of the home to
reduce stack effect.  However, field
research has shown that attempting to
seal all of the openings in a foundation
is both impractical and ineffective as a
stand-alone technique.  Radon can
enter through very small cracks and
openings. These small cracks and
openings are too small to locate and
effectively seal.  Even if all cracks could
be sealed during construction, which
would be costly, building settlement
may  cause new cracks to occur.
Therefore, sealing large cracks and
openings is one of the key components
of radon-resistant construction, but not
the only technique that should be
employed.
                                                                                                                17

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Questions and Answers
What Are  The  Radon-Resistant  Features?
                                       The techniques may vary for different
                                       foundations and site requirements, but
                                       the basic elements of the passive sub-
                                       slab depressurization system are
                                       shown on the opposite page.

                                       In many parts of the country, the
                                       gravel beneath the slab (gas-permeable
                                       layer), plastic sheeting, and sealing and
                                       caulking are already employed for
                                       moisture reduction.  In these cases,
                                       simply adding the vent pipe and
                                       junction box is extremely cost-effective
                                       for reducing radon, and so cost-
                                       effective that even a cost-conscious
                                       builder like Habitat for Humanity has
                                       been adding these features in many of
                                       its homes.

                                       There are more in-depth  discussions
                                       about installing the features in the next
                                       chapter.
What pulls the eo\\ qae through
the pipe?

If the pipe is routed through warm
space (such as an interior wall or the
furnace flue chase, following local fire
codes), the stack effect can create a
natural draft in the pipe.  Because this
method requires no mechanical
devices, it is called a passive soiZ
depressurization system.

If further reduction is necessary to
bring radon levels in a home below the
action level of 4 pCi/ L or even lower, an
in-line fan can be installed in the pipe
to activate the  system. The system is
then called an  active soil
depressurization system. The future
installation of the fan can be made
easier with a little planning during
16

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                                                                                                               Building Radon Out
A. Gas Permeable Layer
Usually a 4-inch layer of clean, coarse
gravel is used beneath the slab to allow
the soil gas to move freely underneath
the house.  Other options are to install
a loop of perforated pipe or soil gas
collection mat (also known as drainage
mat or soil gas matting).

13. Plastic  Sheeting
Polyethylene sheeting is placed on top
of the gas permeable layer to help
prevent the soil gas from entering the
home.  The sheeting also keeps
concrete from clogging the gas
permeable layer when the  slab is
poured.

C. Vent Pipe
A 3- or 4-inch (recommended) PVC or
other gas-tight pipe (commonly used for
plumbing) runs from the gas permeable
layer through the house and roof to
safely vent radon and other soil gases
above the house.  Although some
builders have used 3-inch pipe, field
results have indicated that passive
systems tend to function better with
4-inch pipe.
              ^ll^npHiw^^ l^''Gravel Beneath slb^^
     Caulking    Sealant  '    Polyethylene Soil-Gas Retainer
D. Junction  E3ox
An electrical junction box is wired in
case an electric venting fan is needed
later to activate the system.
E. Sealing and Caulking
All openings in the concrete foundation
floor are sealed to prevent soil gas from
entering the home.  Also, sealing and
caulking the rest of the building
envelope reduces stack effect in the
home.
                                                                                                                           19

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Questions and Answers
Is  There  A Way To  Test  The  Lot  Before  Building?
Soil testing for radon is not
recommended for determining whether
a house should be built radon-
resistant.  Although soil testing can be
done, it cannot rule out the possibility
that radon could be a problem in the
house you build on that lot.  Even if
soil testing reveals low levels of radon
gas in the soil, the amount of radon
that may enter the  finished house
cannot be accurately predicted because
one cannot predict  the impact that the
site preparation will have on
introducing new radon pathways or the
extent to which a vacuum will be
produced  by the house.  Furthermore,
the cost of a single  soil test for radon
ranges from $70 to  $150, and at least 4
to 8 tests  could be required to
accurately characterize the radon in the
soil at a single building site.  Therefore,
the cost to perform soil testing is very
high when compared with installing the
passive radon system in high radon
potential areas (see page 22 on high
radon potential areas).


2D~
Why not wait to install the
features until after the home \e
completed and a radon test \e
performed?

It is much easier and far less costly to
prepare the sub-grade to improve soil
gas flow before the slab is cast. Also,
the pipe itself can be run more easily
through the house before it is finished.
This  significantly improves aesthetics
and can reduce subsequent system
operating costs by planning to route
the pipe through warm space to
maximize passive operation of the
system.
The best way to determine the radon
level in a home: test the home for
radon after occupancy.

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                                                                                                      Building Radon Out
            Would  I   Incur  Liability  t3y  Installing  The  Features?
New homes built in the United States
are not required to meet a specified
radon level. You are not required to
test a home, nor to guarantee that a
home will meet a specified radon level.
By installing radon-resistant features,
you are proactively offering your home
buyers features designed to reduce
radon levels. Adopting radon-resistant
building techniques should  not
increase your liability risks in any
jurisdiction as long as due care is
exercised in following the proper
construction techniques. Especially in
high radon areas, radon-resistant
features may actually help you market
and sell the homes you build.

Once you have decided to build radon-
resistant, you will want to make sure to
install the  features properly. If your
building code includes provisions for
the radon features, follow your code
requirements. Otherwise, follow the
guidance provided in this document or
in any of the following documents:
 Model Standards and Techniques for
Control of Radon in New Residential
Buildings, EPA, March 1994

 Appendix F:  One and Two-Family
Dwelling Code,  1995 Edition, Council
of American Building Officials

 Appendix D: International One and
Two-Family Dwelling Code, 1998
Edition, International Code Council

 Appendix F:  International Residential
Code, 2000 Edition, International
Code Council

 Standard Guide for Radon Control
Options for the Design and
Construction of New Low Rise
Residential Buildings, E 1465-92,
American Society for Testing and
Materials
  MODEL STANDARDS AND
  TECHNIQUES FOR CONTROL
  OF RADON IN NEW
  RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS
      CABO
   ONE and TWO
      FAMILY
  DWELLING COD
IBID
                                                Sel*tv l*r
                                           Uttlnt d M.t.rl.ll
                                                                                                                  21

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Questions and Answers
Should  All  New  Homes  I3e  Built  Radon-Resistant?
All homes could benefit from having a
radon reduction system. However, it is
especially cost effective to install the
features in homes with the greatest
potential for high radon levels.

The potential for elevated radon levels
is not uniform throughout the United
States.  EPA and the U.S. Geological
Survey have identified areas of the
country with the greatest potential for
high radon levels. The map shown on
the next page is the result of indoor
radon measurements,  local geology,
and population densities in a combined
effort to rank radon potentials in all
counties across the  U.S. The map
indicates three radon potential zones
defined by the likelihood of finding
radon measurements within certain
ranges when a short-term closed
building radon test is performed.
EPA recommends that all
homes  built in  Zone  1  (high
radon potential) areas have
radon reduction  systems.

NAHB also recommends using the
passive system in homes in high radon
potential areas (Zone 1). Zone 1
counties  are listed by state on pages 24
and 25.
If you are building in a Zone 2 or 3
area, the homes you build could still
have high radon levels, particularly if
there is a radon "hot spot" in your
county. According to an annual survey
by the NAHB Research Center, about
60,000 homes in Zone 2  and 3 are built
with radon-resistant techniques each
year. You may want to consider
applying the techniques in these areas
too. Since the map was developed,
many States have acquired additional
information on high radon areas.
Contact your state radon office for more
information.

Consumers have asked for the radon-
reduction features in many different
parts of the country and  in all three
radon zones.
22

-------
Building Radon Out
             23

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Introduction
List of Zone 1
ALABAMA
Calhoun
Clay
Cleburne
Colbert
Coosa
Franklin
Jackson
Lauderdale
Lawrence
Limestone
Madison
Morgan
Talladega

CALIFORNIA
Santa Barbara
Ventura

COLORADO
Adams
Arapahoe
Baca
Bent
Boulder
Chaffee
Cheyenne
Clear Creek
Crowley
Custer
Delta
Denver
Dolores
Douglas
El Paso
Elbert
Fremont
Garfield
Gilpin
Grand
Gunnison
Huerfano
Jackson
Jefferson
Kiowa
Kit Carson
Lake
Larimer
Las Animas
Lincoln
Logan
Mesa
Moffat
Montezuma
Montrose
Morgan
Otero
Ouray
Park
Phillips
Pitkin
Prowers
Pueblo
Rio Blanco
San Miguel
Summit
Teller
Washington
Weld
Yuma

CONNECTICUT
Fairfield
Middlesex
New Haven
New London

GEORGIA
Cobb
DeKalb
Fulton
Gwinnett

IDAHO
Benewah
Blaine
Boise
Bonner
Boundary
Butte
Camas
Clark
Clearwater
Custer
Elmore
Fremont
Goodins
Idaho
Kootenai
Latah
Lemhi
Shoshone
Valley
Counties
ILLINOIS
Adams
Boone
Brown
Bureau
Calhoun
Carroll
Cass
Champaign
Coles
DeKalb
De Witt
Douglas
Edgar
Ford
Fulton
Greene
Grundy
Hancock
Henderson
Henry
Iroquois
Jersey
Jo Daviess
Kane
Kendall
Knox
LaSalle
Lee
Livingston
Logan
Macon
Marshall
Mason
McDonough
McLean
Menard
Mercer
Morgan
Moultrie
Ogle
Peoria
Piatt
Pike
Putnam
Rock Island
Sangamon
Schuyler
Scott
Stark
Stephenson
Tazewell
Vermilion
Warren
Whiteside
Winnebago
Woodford

INDIANA
Adams
Allen
Bartholomew
Benton
Blackford
Boone
Carroll
Cass
Clark
Clinton
DeKalb
Decatur
Delaware
Elkhart
Fayette
Fountain
Fulton
Grant
Hamilton
Hancock
Harrison
Hendricks
Henry
Howard
Huntington
Jay
Jennings
Johnson
Kosciusko
Lagrange
Lawrence
Madison
Marion
Marshall
Miami
Monroe
Montgomery
Noble
Orange
Putnam
Randolph
Rush
Scott
Shelby
Steuben
St. Joseph
Tippecanoe
Tipton
Union
Vermillion
Wabash
Warren
Washington
Wayne
Wells
White
Whitley

IOWA
All Counties

KANSAS
Atchison
Barton
Brown
Cheyenne
Clay
Cloud
Decatur
Dickinson
Douglas
Ellis
Ellsworth
Finney
Ford
Geary
Gove
Graham
Grant
Gray
Greeley
Hamilton
Haskell
Hodgeman
Jackson
Jewell
Johnson
Kearny
Kingman
Kiowa
Lane
Leavenworth
Lincoln
Logan
Marion
Marshall
McPherson
Meade
Mitchell
Nemaha
Ness
Norton
Osborne
Ottawa
Pawnee
Phillips
Pottawatomie
Pratt
Rawlins
Republic
Rice
Riley
Rooks
Rush
Russell
Saline
Scott
Sheridan
Sherman
Smith
Stanton
Thomas
Trego
Wallace
Washington
Wichita
Wyandotte

KENTUCKY
Adair
Allen
Barren
Bourbon
Boyle
Bullitt
Casey
Clark
Cumberland
Fayette
Franklin
Green
Harrison
Hart
Jefferson
Jessamine
Lincoln
Marion
Mercer
Metcalfe
Monroe
Nelson
Pendleton
Pulaski
Robertson
Russell
Scott
Taylor
Warren
Woodford

MAINE
Androscoggin
Aroostook
Cumberland
Franklin
Hancock
Kennebec
Lincoln
Oxford
Penobscot
Piscataquis
Somerset
York

MARYLAND
Baltimore
Calvert
Carroll
Frederick
Harford
Howard
Montgomery
Washington

MASSACHUSETTS
Essex
Middlesex
Worcester

MICHIGAN
Branch
Calhoun
Cass
Hillsdale
Jackson
Kalamazoo
Lenawee
St. Joseph
Washtenaw

MINNESOTA
Becker
Big Stone
Blue Earth
Brown
Carver
Chippewa
Clay
Cottonwood
Dakota
Dodge
Douglas
Faribault
Fillmore
Freeborn
Goodhue
Grant
Hennepin
Houston
Hubbard
Jackson
Kanabec
Kandiyohi
Kittson
Lac Qui Parle
Le Sueur
Lincoln
Lyon
Mahnomen
Marshall
Martin
McLeod
Meeker
Mower
Murray
Nicollet
Nobles
Norman
Olmsted
Otter Tail
Pennington
Pipestone
Polk
Pope
Ramsey
Red Lake
Redwood
Renville
Rice
Rock
Roseau
Scott
Sherburne
Sibley
Stearns
Steele
Stevens
Swift
Todd
Traverse
Wabasha
Wadena
Waseca
Washington
Watonwan
Wilkin
Winona
Wright
Yellow Medicine

MISSOURI
Andrew
Atchison
Buchanan
Cass
Clay
Clinton
Holt
Iron
Jackson
Nodaway
Platte

MONTANA
Beaverhead
Big Horn
Elaine
Broadwater
Carbon
Carter
Cascade
Chouteau
Custer
Daniels
Dawson
Deer Lodge
Fallen
Fergus
Flathead
Gallatin
Garfield
Glacier
Granite
Hill
Jefferson
Judith Basin
Lake
Lewis and Clark
Liberty
Lincoln
Madison
McCone
Meagher
Mineral
Missoula
Park
Phillips
Pondera
Powder River
Powell
Prairie
Ravalli
Richland
Roosevelt
Rosebud
Sanders
Sheridan
Silver Bow
Stillwater
Teton
Toole
Valley
Wibaux
Yellowstone
National Park

NEBRASKA
Adams
Boone
Boyd
Burt
Butler
Cass
Cedar
Clay
Colfax
Cuming
Dakota
Dixon
24

-------
Building Radon Out
Dodge
Douglas
Fillmore
Franklin
Frontier
Furnas
Gage
Gosper
Greeley
Hamilton
Harlan
Hayes
Hitchcock
Hurston
Jefferson
Johnson
Kearney
Knox
Lancaster
Madison
Nance
Nemaha
Nuckolls
Otoe
Pawnee
Phelps
Pierce
Platte
Polk
Red Willow
Richardson
Saline
Sarpy
Saunders
Seward
Stanton
Thayer
Washington
Wayne
Webster
York

NEW
HAMPSHIRE
Carroll

NEW JERSEY
Hunterdon
Mercer
Monmouth
Morris
Somerset
Sussex
Warren

NEW MEXICO
Bernalillo
Colfax
Mora
Rio Arriba
San Miguel
Santa Fe
Taos

NEVADA
Carson City
Douglas
Eureka
Lander
Lincoln
Lyon
Mineral
Pershing
White Pine

NEW YORK
Albany
Allegany
Broome
Cattaraugus
Cayuga
Chautauqua
Chemung
Chenango
Columbia
Cortland
Delaware
Dutchess
Erie
Genesee
Greene
Livingston
Madison
Onondaga
Ontario
Orange
Otsego
Putnam
Rensselaer
Schoharie
Schuyler
Seneca
Steuben
Sullivan
Tioga
Tompkins
Ulster
Washington
Wyoming
Yates

N. CAROLINA
Alleghany
Buncombe
Cherokee
Henderson
Mitchell
Rockingham
Transylvania
Watauga

N. DAKOTA
All Counties

OHIO
Adams
Allen
Ashland
Auglaize
Belmont
Butler
Carroll
Champaign
Clark
Clinton
Columbiana
Coshocton
Crawford
Darke
Delaware
Fairfield
Fayette
Franklin
Greene
Guernsey
Hamilton
Hancock
Hardin_
Harrison
Holmes
Huron
Jefferson
Knox
Licking
Logan
Madison
Marion
Mercer
Miami
Montgomery
Morrow
Muskingum
Perry
Pickaway
Pike
Preble
Richland
Ross
Seneca
Shelby
Stark
Summit
Tuscarawas
Union
Van Wert
Warren
Wayne
Wyandot

PENNSYLVANIA
Adams
Allegheny
Armstrong
Beaver
Bedford
Berks
Blair
Bradford
Bucks
Butler
Cameron
Carbon
Centre
Chester
Clarion
Clearfield
Clinton
Columbia
Cumberland
Dauphin
Delaware
Franklin
Fulton
Huntingdon
Indiana
Juniata
Lackawanna
Lancaster
Lebanon
Lehigh
Luzerne
Lycoming
Mifflin
Monroe
Montgomery
Montour
Northampton
Northumberland
Perry
Schuylkill
Snyder
Sullivan
Susquehanna
Tioga
Union
Venango
Westmoreland
Wyoming
York

Edmunds
Faulk
Grant
Hamlin
Hand
Hanson
Hughes
Hutchinson
Hyde
Jerauld
Kingsbury
Lake
Lincoln
Lyman
Marshall
McCook
McPherson
Miner
Minnehaha
Moody
Perkins
Potter
Roberts
Sanborn
Spink
Stanley
RHODE ISLAND Sully
Kent
Washington

5. CAROLINA
Greenville

<5. DAKOTA
Aurora
Beadle
Bon Homme
Brookings
Brown
Brule
Buffalo
Campbell
Charles Mix
Clark
Clay
Codington
Corson
Davison
Day
Deuel
Douglas
Turner
Union
Walworth
Yankton

TENNESSEE
Anderson
Bedford
Blount
Bradley
Claiborne
Davidson
Giles
Grainger
Greene
Hamblen
Hancock
Hawkins
Hickman
Humphreys
Jackson
Jefferson
Knox
Lawrence
Lewis
Lincoln
Loudon
Marshall
Maury
McMinn
Meigs
Monroe
Moore
Perry
Roane
Rutherford
Smith
Sullivan
Trousdale
Union
Washington
Wayne
Williamson
Wilson

UTAH
Carbon
Duchesne
Grand
Piute
Sanpete
Sevier
Uintah

VIRGINIA
Alleghany
Amelia
Appomattox
Augusta
Bath
Bland
Botetourt
Bristol
Brunswick
Buckingham
Buena Vista
Campbell
Chesterfield
Clarke
Clifton Forge
Covington
Craig
Cumberland
Danville
Dinwiddie
Fairfax
Falls Church
Fluvanna
Frederick
Fredericksburg
Giles
Goochland
Harrisonburg
Henry
Highland
Lee
Lexington
Louisa
Martinsville
Montgomery
Nottoway
Orange
Page
Patrick
Pittsylvania
Powhatan
Pulaski
Radford
Roanoke
Rockbridge
Rockingham
Russell
Salem
Scott
Shenandoah
Smyth
Spotsylvania
Stafford
Staunton
Tazewell
Warren
Washington
Waynesboro
Winchester
Wythe

WASHINGTON
Berkeley
Brooke
Clark
Ferry
Grant
Greenbrier
Hampshire
Hancock
Hardy
Jefferson
Marshall
Mercer
Mineral
Monongalia
Monroe
Morgan
Ohio
Okanogan
Pend Oreille
Pendleton
Pocahontas
Preston
Skamania
Spokane
Stevens
Summers
Wetzel

WISCONSIN
Buffalo
Crawford
Dane
Dodge
Door
Fond du Lac
Grant
Green
Green Lake
Iowa
Jefferson
Lafayette
Langlade
Marathon
Menominee
Pepin
Pierce
Portage
Richland
Rock
Shawano
St. Croix
Vernon
Walworth
Washington
Waukesha
Waupaca
Wood

WYOMING
Albany
Big Horn
Campbell
Carbon
Converse
Crook
Fremont
Goshen
Hot Springs
Johnson
Laramie
Lincoln
Natrona
Niobrara
Park
Sheridan
Sublette
Sweetwater
Teton
Uinta
Washakie































              25

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26

-------
Nuts and  Bolts:  Installation  Guide
                                                              Installation is easy.

                                                     As you'll see in this chapter, installing
                                                     radon-resistant features is simple,
                                                     because you use common building
                                                     practices and materials.

                                                     Proper installation of the radon-
                                                     resistant features is very important.
                                                     Improper installation could actually
                                                     increase indoor radon levels.

                                                     This section gives you step-by-step
                                                     instructions - the nuts and bolts - on
                                                     how to install radon-resistant features.

                                                     The  techniques in this document apply
                                                     primarily to new one- and two- family
                                                     dwellings and other residential
                                                     buildings three stories or less in
                                                     height.
                                                                             27

-------
Step-By-Step Installation Guide

Answer  The  Question:  To  Install  Or  Not To  Install?
To help you answer this question,
consider the following points:
     Do you want to reap the benefits
     of installing the features?
*                                        *
     The features not only protect your
     customer's health, they also affect your
     bottom line: your profit. A small
     investment up front on your part may
     make a big difference in return down
     the road, particularly as home buyers
     are increasingly looking for
     environmentally-conscious builders and
     healthy homes.
Are you building in a Zone 1 area?

Check the radon potential map and the
list of Zone 1 counties in the previous
chapter. Some states and counties
have done further research on radon
potential, and you can check with your
state or county government to find out
whether additional information is
available.

If you are building in a Zone 1 area, you
should install radon-resistant features
in the homes that you build. Some
builders also choose to install the
features in Zone  2 and 3 areas,
particularly if radon-resistant
construction  is a common practice in
their area.
2&

-------
                                                                                                            Building Radon Out
Are you required by code to use
radon-resistant techniques?

Some states and local juridisdictions
have adopted Appendix F of the 1995
CABO One & Two Family Dwelling Code,
Appendix D of the 1998 International One
&, Two Family Dwelling Code, or a
similar code requiring installation of
the radon-resistant features. The
International Code Council's new
International Residential Code,
published in early 2000, also contains a
voluntary appendix for radon-resistant
construction requirements that
becomes effective if the appendix is
adopted with the code. If you don't
already know what is required in your
area, check with your local code official
for more information.
Are other builders in your area
installing  radon-resistant
features?

If so, you may want to find out why they
are installing the features, how much it
costs to install the features in your
area, and what the market response
has been.
Are the home buyers in your area
interested in features that
improve indoor air quality or
energy efficiency?

A sub-slab depressurization system not
only helps to reduce indoor radon levels,
but also may help to reduce moisture
and other soil gases. The techniques
also improve energy-efficiency, which
can translate into energy savings for
the home buyer.
                                                                                                                       29

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
Determine What Type  Of System  To  Install
                                               Passive  System
                                               in Crawlspace
There are three general types of radon-
reduction systems that builders have
installed.
     Recommended Option

Passive sub-slab or sub-membrane
depressurization system

It is cost-effective and recommended to
install a  complete passive sub-slab or
sub-membrane depressurization
system, which would be fully-
functioning as soon as construction is
finished.  The home should be tested
after occupancy, and the passive
system should be activated if post-
occupancy testing reveals radon levels
at or above 4 pCi/L.
                                                                                      Passive System
                                                                                    in Basement or with
                                                                                      Slab-c
30

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                                                                                                       Building Radon Out
  Active System
in Basement or with
  Slab-on-grade
         Upgraded  Option

Active sub-slab or sub-membrane
depressurization system

Activating a passive system by adding
an in-line fan would be an effective
upgrade during construction. Virtually
all homes with an active system have
radon levels below the 4 pCi/L action
level.
Not Recommended
                                                                                 Passive system "rough-in"
                                                                                 Some builders perform only the sub-slab
                                                                                 preparation and stub the vent pipe
                                                                                 above the slab. A vent pipe can be
                                                                                 connected and routed through the home
                                                                                 and roof later if radon levels are high.
                                                                                 This is not the recommended
                                                                                 approach. It is much more cost-
                                                                                 effective to run the vent pipe through
                                                                                 the house during construction rather
                                                                                 than after the walls have been closed
                                                                                 up.  However, if you elect to "rough in" a
                                                                                 radon-reduction system, it is important to
                                                                                 be clear with the home buyer that the
                                                                                 home is not equipped with a functioning
                                                                                 system. Be sure to seal off the riser stub
                                                                                 so that radon is not being vented into the
                                                                                 living space.  Also, label the stub so it is
                                                                                 not used as a plumbing waste line.

-------
Step-By-Step Installation Guide
Determine  Vent  Pipe   Location  And  Size
Route Pipe Through Warm Spaces
The vent pipe exhausts radon collected
from beneath the slab or crawlspace.
One objective of a radon system in a
new home is to install it in such a
manner that a natural draft occurs in
the pipe to draw the radon from the soil
without the use of a fan. To accomplish
this, route the pipe up through a warm
part of the house and exhaust it
through the roof.

Ideally, the vent pipe should be
installed in a vertical run,  with the
least number of elbows  which could
restrict air flow.  A radon vent pipe can
also be run through the same chase as
the furnace and water heater flue.  Do
not tie them together, but  rather allow
for enough room to route the radon
vent pipe up alongside the flues with
proper clearances consistent with local
building and fire codes. This means
that the riser should be brought up
through the slab within the same room
as the furnace or water heater.  This
requires a little planning on your part
to identify this location before the slab
is poured and to allow for sufficient
room  in the chase.

In cold climates, do not route the pipe
up through an outside wall. Routing the
pipe up an outside wall will reduce the
natural thermal stack  effect  in the vent
pipe, reducing its effectiveness.   It will
also make it  difficult to install a fan in
the attic if it  is needed later on.  A
better option is to route the pipe up
through an interior wall.
In hot climates and predominantly air-
conditioned houses, the passive stack
will depend more on wind, a hot attic,
and sun heating the pipe.
32

-------
                                                                                                              Building Radon Out
Discharge Location
                                            Use 4-inch Pipe When Possible
To prevent radon from re-entering the
house or any other nearby buildings,
make sure the vent pipe exhausts:

y a minimum of 12 inches above the
  surface of the roof

y a minimum of 10 feet away from any
  windows or other openings in the
  building

y a minimum of 10 feet away from any
  windows or other openings in
  adjoining or adjacent buildings
If you are routing the pipe through the
same chase as the furnace flue, the
vent pipe needs to exit the roof at least
10 feet away from the furnace flue.
Plan to elbow the pipe away from the
flue in the attic to maintain this
separation  above  the roof.  However,
the additional elbows  and horizontal
pipe length will restrict air flow through
the pipe if the system is activated.  Use
45 degree joints to reduce friction.
When deciding between 3-inch and
4-inch pipe (PVC or ABS), the 3-inch
pipe size is the minimum you should
use. However, 4-inch pipe is the
preferred choice for a couple of reasons.
Field results have indicated that
passive systems tend to function better
with 4-inch pipe. A 4-inch pipe will also
allow for a quieter  system if the system
is activated.
                                                                                                                         33

-------
Step-By-Step Installation Guide
The type of system you install
also depends on foundation type.  Please
see the pages listed below which
correspond to the type of foundation you
will be using.
  basement or Slab-on-Grade
               See page 35
Crawlspace

   See page 45
Combination Foundation
           Treat each foundation
           separately and use the
           appropriate
           techniques for each
           foundation segment.
           Pay special attention
           to the points at which
           different foundation
           types join, because
           soil-gas entry routes
           exist in such
           locations. For an
           alternative, see
           page 43.
34

-------
                                                                                                       Building Radon Out
                Basement  and  Slab-on-Grade  Construction:
                                                         Sub-Slab  Preparation
If the house you are building has a slab-
on-grade or basement foundation, the
radon gas must be able to move laterally
beneath the slab to the location where
the vent pipe collects the gas.  There
are three basic methods for improving
soil gas collection beneath slabs.


              Gravel

This option is generally chosen in
regions of the country where gravel is
plentiful and economical or where
gravel is required by the building code
for water drainage. A continuous  four-
inch layer of Ma-inch to  %-inch clean (no
fines) gravel placed beneath a slab
provides a largely unrestricted path for
radon to be collected. This size gravel
provides a drainage layer and capillary
break for moisture control.
  Perforated  Pipe Alternative
In some regions of the country, gravel
is not a feasible option,  either because
native soils are sufficiently permeable
and gravel is not required for water
drainage, or because lack of local supply
makes gravel very expensive.  One
alternative is to use the native fills
beneath the slab and lay in a loop of
perforated pipe to improve soil gas
movement.  This method is already
employed in some homes with the use
of a drain tile loop. The loop of
perforated pipe works well because the
soil gases need only move to the loop
rather than all the way across the slab
as in the  case of a single collection
point.
    Soil Gas  Collection  Mat
           Alternative

In some areas, the perforated pipe
option may not be feasible if the labor
needed to dig a trench for the pipe loop
is too expensive, or if sub-grade soils
are compacted or frozen.  The third
option is to install interconnected strips
of drainage mats (soil gas mats) on top
of the sub-grade and beneath the slab.
Drain mats consist of plastic material
that resembles an egg crate. Wrapped
around the "egg crate" is a geotextile
filter fabric that allows for the passage
of air but prevents the infiltration of wet
concrete. The mat can be laid directly
on top of the prepared sub-grade, which
should be a uniform layer of sand
(native or fill) a minimum of four
inches thick. The concrete can be
poured directly over the soil gas
collection mat.
For installation guidance, see page 36.
For installation guidance, see page 38.
For installation guidance, see page 40.

-------
Step-By-Step Installation Guide
  Installation Step 1A
Gravel
                 Riser
Place a uniform layer of clean aggregate
under all concrete slabs or floor systems
that directly contact the ground and are
within the walls of the living spaces.
Use  a minimum 4-inch thick layer.
The gravel should be about Va- to %-inch
size. Smaller or fine gravel, or gravel
that is not as uniform in size, will
restrict air movement under the slab.
Grade &eam  Obstructions

A grade beam or intermediate footing is
often installed beneath a slab to
support a load-bearing wall, presenting
a barrier to the lateral flow of air
beneath the slab to the soil gas
collection point.  There are  a few
options that can be used to avoid grade
beam obstructions to soil gas air flow.
Option 1
Use post and beam construction by
setting teleposts that support overhead
beams on pads rather than continuous
footings.

Option 2
Provide a means for air to flow through
the grade beam.  This is can be done by
inserting at least two 4-inch pipe
sleeves between the form boards or
trench and pouring the grade beam over
them.  A minimum of two pipes should
be installed at opposite ends of the
grade beam.  One pipe should be
installed every 10 feet.  Tape the ends
so concrete does not enter the ends of
the pipe while pouring the footing.
Remove the tape when forms are
removed and before connecting to pipe
loop if a pipe loop is used.

Option 5
Add a second riser on the other side of
the grade beam. Tie the riser into the
vertical vent stack or run a second vent
stack.
36

-------
                                                                                                              Building Radon Out
Inserting  Vent  Pipe  In  Gravel

Place a 3- or 4-inch TEE fitting at the
location where you want the riser to
extend through the slab.  The size of
the TEE or elbow will depend upon the
diameter of vent pipe you will be
installing.

Connect a short stub, at least 8 inches,
of 3- or 4-inch PVC pipe vertically into
the TEE.
                                                                                                   Recommended
                                                                                                    Improvement
Soil gas air flow can be
somewhat restricted if the
pipe is inserted into the
gravel, and the gravel fills the
pipe, especially if the system
is later activated. To allow
for airflow over a larger area,
lay 3- or 4-inch perforated
and corrugated pipe
(recommended minimum
length of 10 feet) in the
gravel and connect it to the
radon vent riser TEE fitting.
Depending on the location of
the riser, an elbow fitting
may be used in place of a TEE
fitting when using additional
piping in the gravel.  Make
sure that the concrete does
not plug up the pipe during
pour.
                                                                                                                          37

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
 Pipe  Alternative
Perforated  Pipe
Lay a 3- or 4-inch diameter perforated
drain pipe in a trench around the
foundation perimeter just  inside the
foundation footing.  This could be the
same pipe loop used for under-slab
drainage.  Be sure the pipe is covered
by at least one inch of fill to keep
concrete from filling perforations.
What Kind Of Pipe Works
Perforated and corrugated pipe is
flexible, which makes it easy to lay
down in a trench. The perforations also
allow for good soil gas collection. It is
recommended that the pipe be covered
with a  geotextile cloth to prevent fines
from clogging the holes.
How  Much  Pipe  Do  I Need?

Based on field work, it is recommended
to lay a continuous loop of 3- or 4-inch
diameter perforated pipe in the sub-
grade with the top of the pipe located a
nominal one inch below the concrete
slab, for slab areas less than 2,000
square feet. The pipe loop should be
located approximately 12 inches from
the inside of the exterior perimeter
foundation walls.  For slab areas greater
than 2,000 square feet, but less than
4,000 square feet, the same
configuration may be used but the pipe
size should be a minimum of 4 inches
in diameter.  Slab designs in excess of
4,000 square feet should  have separate
loops for each 2,000 to 4,000 square feet
depending upon the size of pipe utilized
(3-inch or 4-inch).

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                                                                                                            Building Radon Out
                                                                                                   Installation
Install  In  Loops Rather Than
Straight  Sections

The reason for laying out the pipe in a
loop is to allow for the soil gas to enter
the collection pipe from two sides.
Also, if the  pipe is crushed at one point
during the construction, the soil gas
will still be  drawn to the vent pipe.
Connecting  Pipe  Loop To  Riser

Close the loop by connecting the ends
to short pipe stubs and to opposite
legs of a 3- or 4-inch PVC TEE.
Connect a short stub of 3- or 4-inch
PVC pipe vertically into the TEE.
Crossing Grade  E3eams

In buildings where interior footings or
other barriers separate the sub-grade
area, the loop of pipe should
penetrate, or  pass beneath, these
interior footings and barriers.  Lay the
loop before the grade beams are
poured, or lay a length of non-
perforated but corrugated pipe across
the trench before pouring a grade
beam.  If the  latter method is  used,
tape off the ends of the pipe before
pouring the beam, remove the tape
after pouring, and finish connecting the
loop.
                                                           talla-
                                                           1
For a more secure connection, when
3-inch corrugated pipe is used for
the loop, the corrugated pipe can be
inserted into a 4-inch PVC TEE by
securing with  sheet metal screws.
When 4-inch corrugated pipe is
used, 4-inch by 4-inch rubber
couplings can be used to connect the
perforated pipe to the solid PVC pipe
stubs.
                                                                                                                        39

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
  Mat  Alternative
Soil  Gas  Collection  Mat
                                                              Exploded View of Mat
First, install a uniform layer of sand, a
minimum of four inches thick.  Next,
place a layer of drainage matting over
the sand, or lay a loop of matting inside
the exterior perimeter foundation walls
(no farther than a nominal  12 inches
from the perimeter foundation walls).

In buildings where interior  footings or
other barriers separate the sub-grade
area, the matting should penetrate
these interior footings or barriers to
form a continuous loop around the
exterior perimeter.

Slabs larger than 2,000 sq.  ft.,  but less
than 4,000 sq. ft., should have an
additional strip of matting that bisects
the loop, forming two areas equally
impacted by the two halves of the
rectilinear loop.  Slab designs in excess
of 4,000 sq. ft. should have successive
loops of drain mat with one riser per
4,000 sq. ft. of area.
Mat  materia
Use a soil gas collection mat or
drainage mat having minimum
dimensions of one inch in height by 12
inches wide, and a nominal cross-
sectional air flow area of 12 square
inches. The mat matrix should allow
for the movement of air through it and
yet be capable of supporting the weight
of the concrete above it. The matrix
should be covered by a geotextile filter
cloth on all four sides to prevent dirt or
wet concrete from entering the matrix.
Repair all breaches and joints  in the
geotextile cloth prior to the pouring of
the slab.
Some mats that are sold for radon
reduction are only Ma-inch high and only
have one side covered with a geotextile
cloth. If this material is used, use a
minimum width of 24 inches. To keep
concrete from entering the  matrix, it
will need to be covered with geotextile
cloth. Do not cover with plastic strips
because differential concrete drying
can occur and cause a crack in the
concrete along the edge of the plastic.
40

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                                                                                                           Building Radon Out
Connecting  Soil  Gas

Collection Mat  To  Vent Pipe

There is a special adaptor fitting that
will accept the flat mat and adapt to a
round vent pipe (see graphic on right).
This type of adaptor is available from
soil gas collection mat and drainage
mat suppliers, and from radon
mitigation equipment suppliers. The
mat is inserted into the flat ends and
the geotextile fabric is taped to the
edges to prevent wet concrete from
entering the TEE. The top of the TEE is
molded plastic to keep wet concrete out.
After the concrete is poured, the top can
be cut with a hacksaw and a 4-inch
riser inserted and glued or cemented
into place.
Seal  Cloth Tears With
Duct Tape

To insure that wet concrete does not
enter the mat interior, cuts and tears
should be sealed with duct tape.
                                                                       Installation
                                                                           1
Making Splices
When making splices, slit the fabric
of the two ends to be joined. Lay the
core from one end on top of the core
from the other end with a three inch
overlap. Lay the fabric back over the
top of the splice and thoroughly seal
with duct tape to keep the wet
concrete from seeping in. Drive  at
least two 8-inch long staples through
the mat at this point, being sure to
drive them through the point where
the two ends overlap.

Making TEEe in  Mat
If you need to connect a length of
mat in the middle of another length
of mat, make a TEE by: cutting back
the geotextile cloth, overlapping the
interior matrix,  replacing the cloth,
securing with nails or landscape
staples, and using duct tape to seal
openings in the geotextile cloth.

Securing  the Mat
To keep the mat in place while the
concrete is being poured, the mat
should be nailed down with 8-inch
landscape staples, or 60 penny nails,
about every seven feet.
                                                                                                                       41

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
   istallation Ste
Plastic  Sheeting
Laying plastic sheeting between the gas
permeable layer and the concrete slab
or floor assembly serves several
important purposes.  The sheeting can
prevent concrete from flowing down
and clogging the gas permeable layer.
It can also bridge any cracks that may
develop in the slab or floor assembly,
thereby reducing soil gas entry.
Finally, the plastic sheeting can act as
a vapor barrier to reduce moisture and
other soil gas entry into the home.

Prior to pouring the slab or placing the
floor assembly, lay a minimum 6-mil
(or 3-mil cross laminated) polyethylene
or equivalent flexible sheeting material
on top of the gas permeable layer.  The
sheeting  should  cover the entire floor
area.
Separate sections of sheeting should be
overlapped by at least 12 inches.  Below
a slab, it is not necessary to seal the
joint between overlapping sheets of
plastic.
Below: Thomas Dickey of the East
Moline, IL Health Department inspects
plastic sheeting installed for a group of
townhomes.
                                           The sheeting should fit closely around
                                           any pipe, wire or other penetrations.
                                            Repair punctures or tears in the
                                            material.  Duct tape may work for
                                            small, uniform tears or holes.  For
                                            larger tears, cover with an additional
                                            piece of overlapping sheeting.
42

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                                                                                                        Building Radon Out
                                                             Seal  Off  And  Label  Riser Stubs
Regardless of the sub-
grade collection method
used, you will have a
short stub of pipe
sticking up to which the
vent piping system will
later be attached.  Care
should be  taken to
cover the end of the
pipe so that it does not
become filled with
concrete when the slab
is poured.

Label this stub so that
someone does  not
mistakenly think it is
tied to  the sewer and
set a commode on it.

Support the  stub,
perhaps off a wall, so that
it stays vertical as the wet
concrete is poured.
Alternative For Combination
Foundations

   Some builders have found it
   to be more economical to tie
   the different foundations
   together into a single riser.
   Place a pipe to connect the
   sub-grade area to the crawl
   space in the trench of the
   intervening footing prior to
   pouring the foundation walls.
   This pipe should be 4-inch
   perforated and corrugated
   pipe to prevent accumulation
   of water, which could block
   air flow. Cover with
   geotextile cloth.  Tape the
   ends of the cross-over to keep
   from getting debris in it until
   the pipe can be connected to
   the slab and crawlspace
   systems.
                                                                                                                    43

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
    itallation  Step 1D
 Lay  Foundation
Foundation walls and slabs should be
constructed to reduce  potential radon
entry routes.  In general, openings in
walls and slabs should be minimized,
and necessary openings and joints
should be  sealed.

Foundation Walls
In poured concrete walls,  all control
joints, isolation joints,  and any other
joints should be caulked with  an
elastomeric sealant such  as
polyurethane  caulk.

Hollow block masonry  walls typically
have cavities that can allow radon
movement.  To prevent this,  hollow
block walls should be topped with a
continuous course of solid block or  be
grouted solid on the top. Alternatively,
use a solid concrete beam at or above
the finished ground level or a full sill
plate.
Dampproof foundation walls, and seal
any penetrations through the walls.

Slab
Pour a strong slab, and take steps to
control cracking.  Although concrete
slabs will almost inevitably crack,
control joints can help the concrete to
crack in planned locations. As with the
foundation walls, all control joints or
other joints should be  sealed with
polyurethane caulk to  reduce radon
entry.

Do not deliberately puncture holes in
the plastic sheeting prior to pouring the
slab. Some contractors will do this to
allow excess water to drain from the wet
concrete.  Putting holes in the plastic
sheeting  decreases (but does not
eliminate) its effectiveness as a soil-
gas retarder.  It is preferable to use
concrete  with a lower water-to-cement
ratio (low slump concrete).
Similarly, some contractors will put a
layer of sand on top of the polyethylene,
both to protect it and to absorb water
from the concrete mix. This practice is
not recommended. The sand may
become wet, from the concrete or rising
ground water, and would have to dry to
the interior through the concrete.  The
presence of the polyethylene sheeting
during this drying process may  cause
moisture problems above the slab.

Trap any condensate or floor drains
which pass through the slab, or route
them through non-perforated pipe to
daylight. Mechanical traps should be
used rather than "wet" traps which can
dry out.

Sump pits which are open to the soil or
fed by drain tile loops should be
covered with a gasketed lid.  For more
information on sumps, see page 52.
44

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                                         Building Radon Out
Craw\e>pace  Construction
                    Crawlspaces are best treated by
                    covering the entire crawlspace floor
                    with plastic sheeting, laying a
                    perforated collection pipe beneath the
                    plastic sheeting, and connecting the
                    pipe to the radon vent riser.
                    Crawlspaces should be constructed
                    consistent with applicable building
                    codes.
                    Access doors and other openings or
                    penetrations between basements and
                    adjoining Crawlspaces should be
                    closed, gasketed, or otherwise sealed
                    with materials that prevent air
                    leakage.
                                                    45

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
 orawispaces Lot
Location Of Riser

The riser can be located anywhere in
the crawlspace. It does not need to be
in the center, so plan on placing it
anywhere in the crawlspace that will be
convenient for crawlspace access and
for routing the pipe up through the
house.

Install Pipe

Lay a length (usually five feet or more)
of 3- or 4-inch diameter corrugated and
perforated pipe or a strip  of geotextile
drain matting on the soil at the location
where you will run the radon vent pipe
up.
Install  Plastic Sheeting

Clear the crawlspace area of objects
which may puncture the plastic
sheeting.

Lay a continuous layer of minimum
6-mil (or 3-mil cross-laminated)
polyethylene sheeting or equivalent
membrane  material to cover the entire
crawlspace area.
Amount Of Plastic

Plan enough plastic to allow you to
overlap seams by 12 inches.  The
edges should also be  brought up on
the foundation walls about 12 inches
to allow for proper adhesion.  It is
critical to allow for enough excess
plastic so if a vacuum is drawn
underneath the plastic, the plastic can
conform to the surface of the
crawlspace floor (like vacuum
packaging).  If the amount of excess
plastic is insufficient, the plastic may
stretch over  a depression in the dirt
like a trampoline.
46

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                                                                                                                Building Radon Out
                                                                                   Optional
                                                                                Improvement-
          Precautions
It may be necessary to take special
precautions to ensure that the plastic
sheeting will not be damaged  after
occupancy.  In high traffic areas, the
polyethylene should be overlain by
heavier material along expected traffic
routes.  Various materials  have been
used for this purpose, including roofing
felt, EPDM rubberized roofing
membrane,  and drainage mat.  Also, if
there may be foot traffic over the entire
crawlspace floor, or if the crawlspace
has very irregular floors, such as sharp
protruding rocks, it may be advisable
to use thicker cross-laminated plastic
sheeting or  to lay a heavier material
underneath the  polyethylene, between
the sheeting and the crawlspace floor.
Type Of Plastic

   The minimum thickness of plastic is a 6-mil polyethylene sheeting.
   However, this material is not very durable if the crawlspace will be accessed
   frequently or if occupants would like to use this area as storage. Regular 8-
   to 10-mil sheeting would provide better puncture resistance. High-density,
   cross-laminated polyethylene has even greater puncture resistance and is
   stronger and more durable. Unlike the regular polyethylene sheeting, which
   can be torn by hand even with a thickness of 10 mil, the high-density cross-
   laminated material cannot be torn by hand, even though its thickness may
   be only 4 mil. Due to its significantly increased puncture resistance, the
   cross-laminated polyethylene is recommended.  The high-density sheeting
   is also available in white, making the crawlspace brighter and most suitable
   for use as storage space.
                                                                                                                            47

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
Optional  Improvement:   Sealing   seams
and  edges  of plastic  sheeting
Sealing  The Sheeting

Although not required in current radon-
resistant construction building codes,
increasing the air-tightness of the
seams in the plastic sheeting may
enhance the system's effectiveness and
integrity.  Sealing should be sufficiently
durable to withstand anticipated traffic
through the crawlspace.  To effectively
seal the plastic sheeting, use a Va-inch
wide bead of caulk.

Type  Of Caulk

Polyurethane caulk will provide some
adhesion to the polyethylene sheeting.
However acoustical sealant, butyl
rubber, or butyl acrlyic caulks form a
more durable bond with the plastic.
Field work suggests that other
proprietary sealants are also effective,
such as Proflex by GeoCel.
Sealing  Seams

Seams between adjoining sheets of
sheeting are usually sealed by
applying a continuous bead of sealant
between the sheets in the 12-inch strip
where the sheets overlap.  Firmly press
the overlapping sheets together.

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                                                                                                              Building Radon Out
Sealing  Edges And  Seams

Brush the walls with a wire brush at 6
to 12 inches above the crawlspace floor
to remove any dirt or loose deposits.
Make
sure the
sheeting
lays flat
on the
crawlspace
   Plan on using one
11-ounce tube of caulk
 to attach an fi>-foot
 length of plastic to
       the wall.
floor right
up to the wall.  Leave several inches of
slack on the vertical section of the
plastic rising up the wall to help prevent
the plastic from pulling on the seam
due to foot traffic or by the system itself
when it is functioning.

Secure plastic to the wall at 6 to 12
inches above the crawlspace floor with
a Ma-inch wide bead of acoustical
sealant or butyl caulk along the wall.
                                For a more durable connection,
                                consider using mechanical fasteners,
                                such as strapping, to hold the plastic to
                                the wall.  If there is an obstruction to
                                the wall within six to 12 inches of the
                                floor, such as a crawlspace access door,
                                                 trim the sheeting to pass beneath the
                                                 obstruction and caulk the sheeting to
                                                 the wall around the obstruction. At
                                                 corners, cut and tuck plastic sheeting
                                                 neatly,  and make sure that the sealing
                                                 is also airtight.
       Keeping Plastic In Place
          While the caulk is curing, use duct tape along the seam to hold the sheets
          together.  The tape can secure the seam to keep the seam from breaking
          during the cure as workers complete the installation. When sealing edges,
          it is also a good idea to temporarily tape the free edge of the plastic so it will
          stay in place as the caulk cures.  Place weights on the plastic to keep it from
          being pulled off the walls as you work on the balance of the crawlspace.

       Vertical Pentrations
             The sheeting needs to be sealed around posts and plumbing lines. It is
             easier to seal a large sheet to a flat apron section than to try to fit it
Installation arouncj the obstacle. You can use scraps of plastic to form an apron to fit
     'i 'I P      around these obstructions. Also, try to plan your seams along rows of
             piers.  When sealing around plumbing risers, make sure that the clean-
             out is accessible.
                                                                                                                          49

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
 orawispaces Lot
Riser Installation
                                         Label Riser And  Plastic
The vent pipe needs to be connected
to the perforated pipe beneath the
plastic in a manner that prevents air
leakage.  The plastic sheeting can be
wrapped around the vent pipe and
taped to the pipe securely.

Another way to prevent air leakage
around the joint is to use two roof
flashing hoods.  One roof flashing goes
below the  plastic and one is placed
above the  plastic to provide a flat area
to which the plastic can be sealed.  The
riser is sealed by the rubber grommet
on the roof flashing.  The two roof
flashings are  then  secured by sheet
metal screws.  Depending on the
location of the riser,  there may be
either a PVC TEE or an elbow beneath
the plastic that has a short 4-inch stub
of pipe to  which the  corrugated and
perforated pipe will be connected.
                              j,  Roof Flashing
Screw
                                        fla&tlc Sheeting
                                         It is a very good idea to label the riser
                                         within the crawlspace so it is not
                                         confused with any other plumbing.  It
                                         is also a good idea to label the plastic
                                         to state  that the plastic should not be
                                         removed and, if cut, it should be
                                         patched or replaced.

                                         After home construction is  completed,
                                         inspect the sheeting for damage and
                                         repair as necessary.
50

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                                                                                                            Building Radon Out
                                                                                                Seal   Openings
After you pour the slab or place the floor
assembly, seal major openings in the
slab to retard soil gas entry through
openings in the slab or floor assembly.

Use materials that provide a
permanent airtight seal such as non-
shrink mortar, grouts, expanding foam,
or similar materials.  When caulking
slab openings, it is best to utilize a
polyurethane caulk which has
excellent adhesion characteristics for
concrete.  The following are some
examples  of locations to be caulked
after the concrete slab has cured and
before framing is installed.
Seal  Floor-To-Wall-Joints

Floor-to-wall joints are critical places to
seal.  Brush debris away from the joint
before applying caulk.  Apply enough
caulk so when smoothed with a piece of
cardboard cut in a convex form, the
caulk will come out onto the floor and
up on the wall about 3/8-inch. The
table on this page indicates the
approximate length of joint that an
11 -ounce tube of caulk will cover.
 Joint Type


 Cold
 Expansion
Feet per
11 oz. Tube
                                                                12
                      Seal  control joints

                      Control joints in the concrete slab,
                      whether they are saw cut or made with
                      grooving tools, should be cleaned and
                      filled with caulk.  Even if they are not
                      cracked initially,  they will likely
                      develop cracks in the future and
                      caulking them before the floor finishes
                      are in place makes sense. A gun-grade
                      polyurethane or a flowable polyurethane
                      can be used. This seal does not
                      interfere with the expansion of the
                      control joint, but does block radon entry.
                                                                                                                        51

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
             Step 3 Continued
Seal Open Sumps
An open sump may allow radon into the
house from beneath the  entire house
foundation. Make sure to cover and
seal the sump.  The sump cover, which
must be removable to allow for regular
maintenance and inspection of the
sump pump, is usually sealed by bolting
it directly to the slab or sump-liner lip
and made airtight through the use of a
gasket or silicone-caulk  seal.


If the sump is intended as a floor drain,
make sure  the lid is equipped with a
trapped drain to handle surface water
on the slab.
Alternative: Tie Into Sumps


The sump can also be incorporated
into the radon system.

If the sump is used without a drain
tile loop, install a sump pit cover
specifically designed to
accommodate a radon vent pipe and
run the vent pipe directly from the
sump.  These sump covers are
available from numerous building
supply stores, as well as catalog
firms dealing in equipment and
supplies for radon migitation
contractors.

If the sump pit where the radon vent
pipe will be located also includes a
pump, a cover can be ordered that
includes both an opening for the
radon vent pipe as well as holes for
the pump's water discharge line and
electrical connection.  Because
sump-cover removal and resealing is
required every time pump
maintenance is performed, consider
using a sump cover with a
transparent "door" or see-through
viewing window. These doors, which
are usually screwed into the cover
and sealed with a gasket, are
generally large enough to permit
limited access to the pump switch
without removing the  sump cover
and breaking the seal. Windowed
sump covers are available for less
than $50.

If the sump is connected to a drain
tile loop, the radon vent pipe could be
inserted directly into the sump or
into any convenient section of the
drain tile loop (then cover and seal
the open sump). Although installing
the radon vent pipe in a remote
section  of the drain tile loop is
slightly more difficult  than directly
into the sump, it may offer a better
exhaust route through the  home's
interior spaces and may offer the
homeowner simplified access to the
sump.
52

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                                                                  Building Radon Out
Other  Places To Seal The Slab
And  Foundation

Use a polyurethane caulk around
locations where plumbing and other
utility service lines pass through slab
and below-grade walls.

Use a full sill plate over the upper row of
block walls in basements or make the
upper row solid block.
Seal hollow block foundation walls at
the top.  Use at least one continuous
course of solid masonry, one course of
masonry grouted solid, or a poured
concrete beam at or above finished
ground surface.  Where a  brick veneer
or other masonry ledge is  installed, the
course immediately below that ledge
should  be sealed.
                                            Caulk joints, cracks, or other openings
                                            around all penetrations of both exterior
                                            and interior surfaces of masonry block
                                            or wood foundation walls below the
                                            ground surface.  Penetrations of
                                            poured concrete walls should also be
                                            sealed on the exterior surface.  This
                                            includes sealing wall tie penetrations.
                                                                              53

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
            Step 3 Continued
Other Considerations
Placing air handling ducts in or
beneath a concrete slab floor, or in
other areas below grade is not
recommended unless the air handling
system is designed to maintain
continuous positive pressure within
the ductwork.  This is to prevent radon
from being drawn into the ductwork and
then distributed throughout the house.
If ductwork does pass through a
crawlspace or beneath a slab, it should
be of seamless material or sealed
tightly.  Where joints in the ductwork
are unavoidable, seal to prevent air
leakage.
Placing air handling units in
crawlspaces, or in other areas below
grade and exposed to soil gas, is not
recommended. However, if they are
installed in these areas, make sure
that they are designed or sealed in a
durable manner to prevent  air
surrounding the unit from being drawn
into the unit.
Avoid using floor drains and air
conditioning condensate drains which
discharge directly into the soil below
the slab or into the crawlspace. If
installed, these drains should be
routed through solid pipe to daylight or
through a trap approved for use in floor
drains.  Mechanical traps should  be
used rather than "wet" traps which can
dry out.

The bottom of channel-type (French)
drains should be sealed with a backer
rod and caulking.  Water drainage
should be directed to a suitable drain.
54

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                                                                                                             Building Radon Out
                                                                                            Install  Vent  Pipe
Be sure to run the pipe up through the
roof before the roofer installs the roof
system. This will allow the roofer to
properly flash around the pipe.  Avoid
angles in the pipe, if possible, to
increase air  flow through the vent pipe
and maximize radon reduction.
Type Of Pipe
Use Schedule 40 PVC or ABS pipe.
The pipe does not  need to be pressure
rated, so a pipe rated for Drain, Waste
and Vent (DWV) applications will be the
most cost effective. Do not use a pipe
thinner than Schedule 40.  Do not use
sheet-metal ductwork due to the
likelihood of breakage or leaks at joints.

All joints should be primed and glued
in a similar manner as indoor
plumbing.
Do Not Trap Pipe

Plan your pipe routing to minimize the
length of pipe and fittings and to
contain no traps.

Do not install traps, intentional or
accidental, in the pipe that will collect
water and restrict or stop air
movement.  Air from the soil will have
some moisture in  it.  As this air moves
through sections of the vent pipe
located in cold spaces, such as an attic,
some moisture can condense. It is
important that this water can drain
back down to the soil.  Insulating the
pipe in the attic will reduce moisture
condensation and maintain upward
thermal draft in the pipe as it passes
through unconditioned space.

Piping should also slope back to the
suction pipe at a minimum angle of
1/8 inch per foot.
        Installation
           1
Use either PVC or ABS pipe,
not both. The two types of
pipe  require different
cleaners and cements.
                                                                                                                        55

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
        rt\on Step 4 Continued
Allow  For  Future  Installation
Of  Fan

Although passive radon systems are
effective for reducing radon levels by
an average of about 50%, it is always a
good idea to plan ahead in case adding
an in-line fan is needed for further
radon reduction to bring indoor levels
below 4.0 pCi/L, or in case the future
occupant wants to lower the radon
levels as much  as possible. During
installation of the vent pipe, consider
these criteria for locating a future fan:
y Fan cannot be inside the living space
  of the house.
if Fan cannot be in the crawlspace
  beneath the  home.
y Fans are most often located in attics
  or garages (unless there is living
  space above the garage).
y Fans require a 30-inch vertical run
  of pipe for installation.
y Fans require an unswitched
  electrical junction box.
Maintain  Fire Resistive Rating
Of  Walls And Ceilings

If you route your vent pipe through the
wall between the house and the
garage, you  will need to put a fire-
barrier around the pipe (on the inside
of the garage) to maintain the integrity
of the wall.  Install a fire barrier with a
rating equal to the wall.

Note that some ceilings are also fire
rated ceilings and will require fire
barriers as well.
Label Radon  Vent  Pipe

Label the exposed portions of the pipe
so other people will know that the pipe
is not part of the sewer system during
construction.  It is recommended that
the radon vent system  be labeled in a
conspicuous location on each floor
level.  Also, occupants  and future
occupants will know that it is part of a
"radon vent  system."

Places to label include:

y Where riser exits slab
y Where pipe  is seen in closets
y Pipe run through attic

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                                                                                                  Building Radon Out
                                                                                        Installation
RainCp
PVC Suck
Support*
Attaching
Rain Cop
to Suck

           AnlnHn.Slda.ol
          V Cap, Dvlpa Out through
           Annuhil between Cap
          \ and Stack
Recommended Improvement:
Screen On  Discharge

It is a good idea to put a 1/4-inch mesh
screen on the discharge to keep birds
from nesting in the pipe.

Rain caps can reduce radon flow and
can force radon (if the system is
activated) back down towards the
openings into the living spaces.  In
most areas, they are not needed.   For
very high rainfall areas, use alternative
special devices which prevent large
amounts of rain from entering the
system while still allowing the air  to
vent up and away from the building.
These devices are available through
radon mitigation supply distributors.
Another design option, which is more
commonly used with commercial
applications than with residential
installations, is an annular rain cap as
pictured  here.
                                                                                           i
                                                               Support the pipe
                                                                  Support the pipe using
                                                                  plumbers strapping at least
                                                                  once  every 6 feet in
                                                                  horizontal runs and once
                                                                  every 8 feet in vertical runs.

                                                               Insulate the pipe
                                                                  In cold  climates, insulate the
                                                                  pipe where the pipe is routed
                                                                  through unheated spaces,
                                                                  such as the attic.
                                                                                                              57

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
Seal  Ducts  and
Air-Handling  Units
                                       HVAC systems should be carefully
                                       designed, installed and operated to
                                       avoid depressurization of basements
                                       and other areas in contact with the soil.
                                       Ideally, ductwork should remain in the
                                       conditioned space of the home. It is
                                       very important to seal joints in air
                                       ducts and plenums passing through
                                       unconditioned spaces such as attics,
                                       crawlspaces, or garages.

                                       In addition to avoiding problems with
                                       unwanted air distribution, sealing ducts
                                       can save energy, make homes more
                                       comfortable, and lower heating and
                                       cooling costs.

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                                                                                                         Building Radon Out
For Future Installation of  Fan
                                                               Install  Electrical  Junction  Bex
Although in most cases the passive
system alone is enough to keep radon
levels below 4 pCi/L, occasionally the
homeowner will want or need to
activate the system by adding a fan to
further lower radon levels in the home.
To prepare for this possibility, pre-wire
the attic when installing a passive
system. An unswitched electrical
junction box should be installed in the
attic or garage within 6 feet of the vent
pipe.  (See page  56 for a discussion
about fan installation location.)
For attics with interior access, many
building codes require a light in the
attic.  In these cases,  if the junction
box for the light is located at an
appropriate location for the fan,
another junction box will not be
necessary.  If not, wiring the additional
outlet will be simple.  The fan outlet
does not require a dedicated circuit; it
may branch off the existing circuit for
the light.
                                                                                                                    59

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
Post-Occupancy  Tasting
Note: The above figure illustrates one example
of a radon testing device. There are many
other types of radon testing devices available.
                                           Testing is simple and easy.

                                           After the home is complete and
                                           occupied, it should be tested to
                                           determine whether or not the passive
                                           system needs to be activated.  You
                                           should recommend to the home buyer
                                           that they test the home after they move
                                           in and activate the system if the radon
                                           level is at or above 4 pCi/L.

                                           Some builders  installing passive
                                           systems are testing the homes they
                                           build and activating the passive radon
                                           systems if radon levels are at or above 4
                                           pCi/L. In all cases you should advise
                                           the homeowners to retest sometime in
                                           the future to confirm radon levels
                                           remain low.
Obtaining a  Test  Kit

Radon test kits can often be obtained at
your local hardware store.   There are
                                           many kinds of low-cost "do-it-yourself
                                           radon test kits you can get through the
                                           mail and in hardware stores and other
                                           retail outlets.  Coupons for short-term
                                           and long-term radon test kits are also
                                           available from the National Safety
                                           Council's web site at
                                           www.nsc.org/EHC/indoor/coupon.htm.
Types Of Radon Tests

Short-term Tests

The quickest way to test is with short-
term tests.  Short-term tests remain in
the home for two days to 90 days,
depending on the device.  Because
radon levels tend to vary from day to day
and season to season, a short-term test
is less likely than a long-term test to
give the home's year-round average
radon level. If you or the homeowner
need results quickly, a short-term test

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                                                                                                                Building Radon Out
followed by a second short-term test
may be used, or two short-term tests
may be performed simultaneously.

Long-term Tests

Long-term tests remain in a home for
more than 90 days. A long-term test
will give a reading that is more likely to
give  a home's year-round average radon
level than a short-term test.
How To  U&e  a Test  Kit

Follow the test kit instructions.  For
short-term tests, close all windows and
outside doors and keep them closed
throughout the test, except for normal
entry and exit.  If you are doing a short-
term test lasting just 2 or 3 days, be
sure to also close windows and outside
doors at least 12 hours before beginning
the test.  Do not conduct short-term
tests lasting just 2 or 3 days during
unusually severe storms or periods of
unusually high winds, because these
conditions can affect the test results.

The test kit should be placed in the
lowest lived-in level of the home, for
example, the basement if it is to be
frequently used, otherwise the first
floor. It should be put in a room that is
used regularly, like a living room,
playroom, den or bedroom but not the
kitchen or bathroom. Place the kit at
least 20 inches above the  floor in a
location where it won't be disturbed and
away from drafts, high heat, high
humidity, and exterior walls. Leave the
kit in place for as long as  specified in
the device instructions. Once the test
is completed, reseal  the package and
send it to the lab specified on the
package right away for analysis.  You
should receive test results within a few
weeks.
Steps For Testing
If you are conducting the radon test
prior to sale of the home, you will likely
want to get results as quickly as
possible by following these testing
steps.  If a homeowner is testing the
home for radon, he or she should
follow the longer steps on page 69.

Step 1
Conduct a short-term test for at least
48 hours. After the first test has been
completed, conduct a follow-up short-
term test for at least 48 hours.

Alternatively, take two short-term tests
at the same time in the same location
for at least 48 hours.

Step 2
If the average of the two tests is
4 pCi/L or more, activate the passive
radon reduction system.
                                                                                                                            61

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Step-By-Step Installation Guide
  Optional
       Activating  the  System
                                           This section provides basic guidelines if
                                           you decide to install an in-line fan to
                                           activate the system. Some states
                                              require that in-line fans for radon
                                                  reduction be installed by a
                                                       certified radon mitigation
                                                            contractor.  Call your
                                                              state radon contact
                                                              for a list of certified
                                                              contractors (see
                                                              Appendix D for a list
                                                              of phone numbers).

                                           Location
                                           The fan and all positively pressurized
                                           portions  of the vent pipe should be
                                           located outside habitable space in the
                                           building.

                                           The ideal location is in the attic, or,
                                           perhaps, in an attached garage, where
                                           the fan housing and vent pipe can be
                                           sheltered from the  elements,  yet be
                                           outside the building's conditioned
                                           spaces.  Sheltering the fan maximizes
its efficiency and life expectancy by
minimizing exposure to extreme
temperatures and  moisture.
Placement in a non-conditioned space
prevents the accidental pumping of
radon directly into a home should a
leak occur in the fan housing or at the
vent-pipe joints.

Building designs that call for a flat roof
or cathedral ceiling, or some other
design feature that makes the attic
installation unworkable, may
necessitate placing the fan on the roof
or in an exterior venting pipe.

Appropriate fan locations:
if Unoccupied attic
if Outside the house
if In garage

Inappropriate fan locations:
X In crawlspace
X  In basement
X In occupied attic
62

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                                                                                                                Building Radon Out
Type Of Fan
Although various types of fans are
suitable for this purpose, the most
commonly-used fans  are centrifugal
fans often referred to as "in-line,"
"tubular" or "tube" fans.

The size and air movement capacity of
the vent pipe fan should be sufficient
to maintain a pressure field beneath
the slab or crawlspace membrane that
is lower than the ambient pressure
above the slab or membrane.  Most
contractors have found 90-watt in-line
fans to be adequate for most home
styles, locations and sizes. You can
also look for a fan capable of moving
100 cubic feet of air per minute at
one inch of water column, which should
be sufficient for most  applications.
How To  Install

Install the fan in a vertical run of the
vent pipe.  This will prevent outdoor
precipitation from accumulating in the
fan or fan housing. Do not use an
angled portion of the  pipe.

To reduce vibrations  and noise
transmission,  use flexible air-tight
couplings instead of rigid couplings.
Secure couplings tightly to the fan
using circular hose clamps.

In regions with prolonged or extreme
cold, both fans and attic vent pipes
should be insulated to reduce
condensation  and the possibility of
vent exhaust "freeze up."  Freeze-up is
most often found in regions with
extremely cold winters and in systems
having high air-flow rates as well as
high moisture levels in the sub-slab
soil.
Install  A  System  Failure
Warning Device

A system failure warning device should
be used to alert occupants to any
malfunction of the system or drop in its
suction flows. Types of warning devices
include pressure gauges, manometers
and visual or audible alarms. Unless
the indicator is integral to the fan
power supply, the audible or visual
alarm should be connected to a
separate circuit so that it will activate
if power to the fan is interrupted.
                                                                                                                           63

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Working With Homebuyers
 Sold:  Working   With   Homebuyers
Get An
Edge  On
The  Market
      Make The Radon System
      A Custom  Feature
      Include A  Brochure On
      Radon Systems In All
      Sales Information
All homebuyers want to know that they
are buying a quality home.  There are a
few simple things that you can do to
educate your homebuyers that radon-
resistant features make sense both
from a health and from an investment
standpoint.

The activities suggested here are
inexpensive and easy to implement.
Doing them will make your company
stand apart from the other builders in
your area by demonstrating your
commitment to customer satisfaction
and healthy homes.
Prominently list the availability of a
radon system as a custom feature in all
your sales, promotional, and
advertising materials.  Emphasize the
desirability of a radon system in the
same way you would hardwood floors,
nine-foot ceilings, upgraded
appliances, master bedroom suites,
etc.  These are all features that
enhance the value of the house and
make it more enjoyable to live in.
Stress the economic advantage of
adding a radon system while the home
is being built, thereby avoiding a more
expensive, retrofit installation.
Provide a pamphlet on the basics of a
radon system in all hand-out sales
materials. You might include radon
maps from your specific geographical
area, as well as easy-to-understand
information on why a radon system is
important, how it operates, the costs
involved, and other questions that
home buyers might ask when
considering a radon system. A number
of useful consumer-oriented
publications are available to be
ordered in bulk, such as the brochure
"Buying a New Home? How to Protect
Your Family From Radon" and radon
maps. See Appendix C for more
information.
64

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                                                                                                             Building Radon Out
        Educate Your Sales Team
        Use  Your  Model Home As
        A Promotional  Tool
        Generate E3uyer
        Awareness
All sales associates should be as
knowledgeable and positive about the
value of a radon system as they are
about every other feature you offer.
Have them stress not only the
amenities you provide, but also the
solid construction techniques you
offer, including a radon system.  Help
your sales staff understand the radon
system and how it works, so that they
can explain its benefits to sales
prospects.  An on-site review of the
system by a construction supervisor is
an excellent way to start. In addition,
have your sales  personnel become
familiar with your radon information
materials  and ask them to go over
these materials with prospective home
buyers.
Install a radon system in your model
home. Advertise it as another, must-
have feature that is desired by many
new home buyers.  Consumers expect a
builder to include the "latest and
greatest" product offerings in the
model home; make  a radon system one
of those special elements and promote
it accordingly.
        Post  Signs
Highlight the value of a radon system by
placing an explanatory sign in the
basement or near the crawlspace area
of your model home. This will make
prospective home buyers aware of the
system's  availability, function, and
benefits.  As you prepare to install
radon systems in your new homes,
increase the interest of "drive-by"
prospects by placing a "Radon System
Being Installed" placard on the site.
To increase home buyers' awareness of
radon, consider the following
promotional activities.

Print Media
Prepare a news release on the
availability of your new homes.  This
can include a complete discussion of
features, size, location, floor plans, etc.
Prominently mention that you are the
"only builder  in your area" to offer
radon systems (if this is appropriate and
accurate). Explain why you have
chosen to provide this important
feature to members of your community.

Website Promotion
More and more consumers are  relying
on the internet for information about
buying a new home. Develop a special
web  page on radon systems  to
integrate with your existing  website.
                                                                                                                         65

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Working With Homebuyers
Make  A  Name  For  Yourself
One of the most effective ways of
marketing radon systems is to
establish yourself as a knowledgeable
builder concerned about radon and
equipped to do something about it.  By
providing consumers with general
information about radon and radon
systems, you will establish yourself as
a socially-responsible builder who is
attentive to the health and well-being
of community families.  This reputation
is likely to give you an edge over your
competitors by making your homes
more desirable to today's
health-conscious consumers.

The following marketing activities are
simple ways to build your reputation in
the community as a knowledgeable
builder of quality, radon-resistant
homes.
        Inform Newspaper
        Readers
A well-conceived "letter to the editor" on
the importance of safe indoor
environments, and the contribution
that radon systems can make, may
spark increased demand for radon
systems and highlight their availability
in your homes.
       Alert Local  Realtors
Many realtors are familiar with the
radon issue as it relates to existing
homes.  Consider holding a seminar or
informal gathering of local realtors to
discuss the importance of including
radon systems in new construction.  Let
them know that you are a builder who
offers such systems in your houses and
that you are willing to work with any
client they may have that is concerned
about the possibility of radon in their
home.
66

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                                                                                                             Building Radon Out
        Consider A Public Service
        Announcement
        Offer Community
        Education Materials
        E3e A Television Star
A radio public service announcement
about radon's health effects and the
value of a radon system in protecting
people is a relatively inexpensive, but
highly effective, means of increasing
community awareness about radon
and expanding the demand for radon
systems.  Your 30-second
announcement can conclude by
identifying your company as the
sponsor of the information and a
builder who is interested in protecting
people from radon.
Brief, informational brochures or fact
sheets on radon and radon systems
can be developed for free distribution
in grocery stores, schools, libraries,
banks, community centers, etc.  These
materials  can help increase awareness
of radon's impact on the community
and the value of radon systems in
reducing radon exposure.   Display
your company's name and logo on  all
educational materials you distribute.
Community television programs on
"moving up" or "buying your dream
home" are always of interest to
consumers.  Use these programs to
promote radon systems. Arrange to
appear on a community-based
television program and use the
opportunity to talk about why you offer
radon systems in your homes.  Local
cable stations are especially good
outlets for this type of activity.
                                                                                                                         67

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Working With Homebuyers
What  To  Tell  Homebuyers
Once you have sold the house, there
are a few key items to tell your
homebuyer about the radon features
that you have installed in their new
home.
What Features Have  E3een
Installed?

Let your home buyer know whether
you have installed a passive radon
system, an active radon system, or a
rough-in for a sub-slab depressurization
system. Explain what the features are
designed to do.

Passive System
If you have installed a passive system,
let the homebuyer know that they
should test their home for radon.  Tell
the homeowner that if the tests
indicate a radon level at or above the
action level of 4 pCi/L, it is
recommended that they hire a radon
mitigation contractor to activate the
system, or you could offer to activate
the system.

Active System
If you have installed an active system,
recommend to the homebuyer that they
conduct a radon test after they have
occupied the home.  Let the homebuyer
know where the system failure warning
device is located and inform the
homebuyer that if the device indicates
a system failure, the fan is  no longer
working to vent radon out of the home.
The homeowner should then contact a
radon mitigation contractor to check
the system.

Rough-In For Sub-Slab Depressurization
If you have installed a rough-in for sub-
slab depressurization, it is very
important for the homebuyer to be
aware that the house has not been
equipped with a functioning radon
system.  Explain that the home would
need to be tested for radon. If the tests
indicate a radon level at or  above the
action level of 4 pCi/L, it is highly
recommended that the homebuyer hire
a radon mitigation contractor to install
the rest of the radon system.

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                                                                                                             Building Radon Out
Does  This  Mean  This House
Has  High Radon?

Some homebuyers may be concerned
that you have installed the radon
system because the house has high
radon levels.  Simply explain that there
is no way of knowing whether or not a
home has high radon until the home is
completed and a radon test is
performed. Tell them that a passive
system will reduce radon levels on
average by about 50%.  Also tell them
that the home should be tested, and
that the system should be activated if
further reductions are desired or if
radon levels are at or above 4 pCi/L.  If
the radon features had  not been
installed, it could cost $800 - $2500 to
fix a radon problem after construction
has been completed.
How DOG& The  Homebuyer Test
For  Radon?

The following are recommended steps
for the homebuyer to test for radon
once they have moved into the home.
These steps are slightly different from
the steps outlined for builders on page
61, because the homeowner has more
time to perform long-term tests.

Step 1
Conduct a short-term test for at least
48 hours.  If the result is 4 pCi/L or
higher, take a follow-up test (Step 2)  to
be sure.

Step 2
Follow up with either a long-term test or
a second short-term test. For a better
understanding of the year-round
average radon  level, take a long-term
test. For faster results, take a second
short-term test.
Step 3
If you followed up with a long-term
test: activate the passive system if the
long-term test result is 4 pCi/L or
higher.  If you followed up with a
second short-term test: consider
activating the system if the  average of
the two short-term tests is 4 pCi/L or
higher.  The higher the short-term
results, the more certain you can be
that you  should activate a passive
radon system.  Once a system has been
activated, the radon testing  should be
repeated  with a short-term test
(preferably between 24 hours and 30
days after activation).
                                                                                                                        69

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Working With Homebuyers
70

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                                                                    Building Radon Out
Hopefully, you now see the benefit of
building homes with radon-resistant
features, and you are familiar with the
techniques for installing the features.

The following pages contain additional
information which you may find useful,
including architectural drawings, and
information about how to order a video
by the National Home Builders
Association to view the features being
installed.

Become one of the many builders
nationwide who are helping to reduce
the risks of radon!
                                                                                 71

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Appendix
Architectural  Drawings
On the following pages are three
architectural drawings of the passive,
active, and crawlspace radon reduction
systems to help you visualize the
complete radon features as they
should be installed.

These drawing are available in  a larger
format as EPA document 402-F-95-012,
free through the National Service
Center for Environmental Publications.
They are also available electronically
on the EPA website in .PDF files and as
CAD drawings.  For more information,
see Appendix C.
72

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                                                                                                                                                          Building Radon Out
Architectural   Drawing

Passive Sub-Slab

Depressurization System

Used for basement and slab-on-grade

construction
 PASSIVE SUB-SLAB DEPRESSURIZATION RADON
 CONTROL SYSTEM FOR NEW  CONSTRUCTION

 NOTES'
 1. ALL CONCRETE SLABS THAT COME IN CONTACT WITH THE GROUND SHALL
   BE LAD OVER A GAS PERMEABLE MATERIAL MADE UP OF EITHER A MIMMUM
   4- THCK UMFORM LAYER OF CLEAN AGGREGATE, OR A MNMUU 4" THICK
   UNIFORM LAYER OF SAND. OVERLAIN BY A LAYER OR STRIPS OF MANUFACTURED
   MATTING DESIGNED TO ALLOW THE LATERAL FLOW  OF SOIL GASES.

2. ALL CONCRETE FLOOR SLABS SHALL BE DESIGNED AND CONSTRUCTED
   N ACCORDANCE WITH LOCAL BULDING CODES. ADDITIONAL REFS*
   AMERICAN CONCRETE NSTITUTE PUBLICATIONS, "AO3O2.1R" V
   "ACI332R", OR THE POST TENSONNC MSTITUTE MANUAL. "DESIGN
   AND CONSTRUCTION OF  POST-TENSIONED SLABS ON GROUND".

3. ALL OPENINGS, GAPS AND JONTS IN FLOOR AND WALL ASSEMBLES IN
   CONTACT SOL OR GAPS AROUND PPES. TOILETS. BATHTUBS OR
   DRAWS PENETRATNG THESE ASSEMBLIES  SHALL BE FILLED OR CLOSED
   WITH MATERIALS THAT PROVIDE A PERMANENT AIR- TIGHT SEAL.  SEAL
   LARGE OPENMGS  WITH NON-SHRINK UORTAR, GROUTS OR EXPANDING
   FOAM MATERIALS  AND SMALLER GAPS WITH AN ELASTOUER1C JOINT
   SEALANT. AS DEFNED IN ASTM C920-B7.

4. VENT PPES SHALL BE INSTALLED SO THAT ANY RAINWATER OR
   CONDENSATION DRAMS DOWNWARD INTO  THE  GROUND BENEATH  THE
   SLAB OR SOIL-GAS-RETAROER MEMBRANE.

5.  ORCUJTS SHOULD BE A MMMJM  15 AMP, 115 VOLT.
                                                                                                                                    EXH.'LIST (10- FROM OPCMNGS MTO
                                                                                                                                           CONDITIONED SPACES OF BUU.ONG1

                                                                                                                                         12" UN. ABOVE ROOF
                                                                                                 INTERIOR PARTITION


                                                                                             FLOORING
                                                                                              CAP BLOCK OR OTHER SEAL
                                                                                              ON HOLLOW BLOCK WALLS
                                                                                              WATERPROOF SEALANT APPLED

                                                                                              TO EXTERIOR WALLS
                                                                                              SOI. -GAS-RET ARDER MEMBRANE (UN.

                                                                                              S-MI. POLYETHYLENE SHEETING OR
                                                                                              EQUIVALENT)! OVERLAP SEAMS 12" UN.
                            SEAL OPENINGS IN SLAB AND
                            AROUND PENETRATIONS: NOTE 3
                                                                                ELECTRICAL JUNCTION BOX

                                                                                FOR FUTURE NSTAUATON

                                                                                OF VENT FAN: NOTE  5.


                                                                            ELECTRICAL JUNCTION BOX
                                                                            FOR FUTURE INSTALLATION

                                                                            OF WARNMG DEVICE: NOTE 5.
                                                                                                                                                 If MM. 4" THICK LAYER
                                                                                                                                                //   OF GAS PERMEABLE
                                                                                                                                                ft   MATERIAL:  ~
                                                                                      RIAL: NOTE 1
                                                                                                                                              PVC T-FITTING (OH EQUIVALENT)
                                                                                                                                              TO SUPPORT VENT PIPE
                                                                                                                                                                           73

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Appendix
  Architectural   Drawing
  Passive Sub-Membrane
  Depressurization System
  Used for crawlspace construction
PASSIVE RADON CONTROL  SYSTEM M
CRAWL  SPACE FOR NEW CONSTRUCTION

NOTES
L WALL A LENGTH OF J" OR 4" DIAMETER PERFORATED DRAM
  TIE HORIZONTALLY BENEATH THE SHEETMC AND CONNECT
  TO THE "T" FIT T WC WITH THE VERTCAL STANQPFE TtAOUCH
  THE SOL-CAS-RETAROER MEMBRANE, THS HORIZONTAL !
  SHOULD NORMALLY BE PLACED PARALLEL TO THE LONG
  OUENSION  OF THE HOUSE AND SHOULD EXTEND NO CLOSER
  THAN 6 FEET TO THE FOUNDATION WALL,

2. VENH.ATE CRAWL5PACES M CONFORMANCC WITH
  LOCAL CODES: VENTS SHALL BE OPEN TO THE
  EXTERIOR AND BE OF NONCLOSEWLE DESIGN.

J. CKOJIS SHOULD BE A MNMUM 15 AMP. (15 VOLT.
                                                                                                                   EXHAUST fWFSOM OPENMCS MTO
                                                                                                                         CONDITIOMED SPACES OF BWLONG!
                                                                                                                        ir UN. ABOVE HOOF
                                                                                  MTEAOR PARTITION

                                                                               LtVWG AREA
                                                                                   SEAL MOUND
                                                                                   FLOOR PENETRATIONS
                                                                              -CAP BLOCK OR OTHER SEAL
                                                                               ON HOLLOW BLOCK WALLS
                                                                                                     CRAWL SPACE
                                                                                                     NOTE 2
                                                                           r
                      SOL-GAS-RETAROER MEMBRANE SEALED ACAMST
                      WALL AND AROUND PENETRATIONS CUN. E-UL
                      POLTETHTLEME SWETINC OR EOUVALENT)
                                                                      -ELECTRICAL JUNCTION BOX
                                                                       FOR FUTURE NSTALLATION
                                                                       OF VENT FAX NOTE J.

                                                                   -ELECTRICAL JUNCTION BOX
                                                                    FOR FUTURE MSTAUATKW
                                                                    OF WARNWC DEVICE: NOTE 3.
 - 3"-4* BA. VENT
  CPVC OR EOUVALENT)

  :SEAL MEU6RAHE AROUND
  PFE PENCTRATGN

~JONNC  SICETS OF
MEiQRANE OVERLAPPED
MC SEALED-
                                                                                  |=||=H=U=;U=||=ll=|l=tl=][=||=||=||=|i=||=:  safes = =| =ll=i|
                                                                                                                    dltastdi
                                                                                                                           PVC T-FTC (OR EQUIVALENT)
                                                                                                                           TO SUPPORT VENT ft*

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                                                                                                                                    Building Radon Out
Architectural  Drawing

Active Sub-Slab  Depressurization
System
Uses fan to mechanically draw air from
beneath the slab (or membrane)
through the vent pipe.
ADDITIONAL COMPONENTS REOURED FOR ACTIVATION
Of PASSIVE SUB-SLAB OEPRESSURIZATION OR
CRAW.SPACE RADON CONTROL SYSTEM

NOTES
I MSTALL THE VENT FAN M THE VERTICAL RUN OF TIC VENT  PK.
  THE SIZE AM) R MOVEMENT CAPACITY OF THE VENT FAN SHALL
  BE SUFFCENT TO  CREATE AM) MAMTAM A PRESSURE FCLO
  BENEATH THE SLAB OR CRAWLSPACE MEMBRANE THAT  IS LOWER
  THAN THE PRESSURE ABOVE THE SLAB OR MEMBRANE.

2. ALL POSITIVELY PRESSURED PORTIONS OF THE VENT  PP AND
  FAN SHALL BE LOCATED OUTSDC THE HABITABLE SPACE OF
  THE BULDMC.

3. PROVDE A V6BLE OR  AUOBLE WARMNG STSTtM TO
  ALERT THE 6UR.OMC OCCUPANT F THERE IS A LOSS
  Of PRESSURE OR AR FLOW M THE VENT WE.
                                                                                                          EXHAUST ( FROM OPEMNGS WTO
                                                                                                                COMXTONEO SPACES' OF 8ULDMC)
                                                                                                               12- MM. ABOVE ROOF
FAN COUPLNG TO PPE

      ROOF BRACE
                                                                            WTEROfi PARTITION	M

                                                                         FLOOHM6 i           I

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Appendix
Glossary
Active System
Passive system with the addition of a
fan to more actively draw radon from
the soil into the stack where it
dissipates into the atmosphere.  A
system-failure warning device (alarm)
is also installed to alert the occupant if
the system is not working.

Action level
Home owners should take action to
lower radon levels indoors when levels
are at or above 4 pCi/L.

Aggregate
A coarse material, such as gravel,
placed below the slab.

ASTM Standard  Guide 1465-92
A guidance booklet published in 1992
by the American Society for Testing
and Materials according to their
consensus  process for deciding on the
content.

Building  Code
Criteria or requirements (i.e., minimum
standards)  set forth and enforced by a
state or local agency for the protection
of public health and safety. Is usually
based on a model code  (see below)
and/or Model Standards published by
acknowledged organizations or
associations.
Condensation
Vapor in the air turns into water on
cold surfaces.  Beads or drops of water
(and frost in extremely cold weather)
accumulate on the inside of the
exterior covering of a building when
warm, moisture-laden air from the
interior  reaches a point where the
temperature no longer permits the air
to sustain the  moisture it holds.

Condensate drains
Drains which  remove condensation
from air-conditioning or other
equipment, frequently empty into the
sump or below the slab.

Dampproofing
Sealing  the foundation walls to prevent
outside  moisture from entering the
basement, although not as tightly as  in
water-proofing.

Drain Tile Loop
Typically refers to a length of
perforated pipe extending around all or
part of the  footing perimeter for
draining water away  from the
foundation of a home.

Flashing
Material for reinforcing and
weatherproofing the joints and angles
of the roof and penetrations through
the roof.
Footing
The supporting base for the foundation
walls of a house.

Gas-permeable
A material through which gas passes
easily.

International Codes
Model codes published by the
International Code Council (ICC) to
combine all four model building codes
into one. The International Residential
Code was published in early 2000.

Junction Box
An enclosed box used to connect or
branch electrical wiring.

Map of Radon Zones
EPA's Map of Radon  Zones assigns
each of the 3141 counties in the
United States to one  of three zones
based on radon potential:

    Zone 1
    Counties have a  predicted average
    indoor screening level greater than
    4pCi/L

    Zone 2
    Counties have a  predicted average
    indoor screening level between
    2and4pCi/L
76

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                                                                                                                Building Radon Out
    Zone 3
    Counties have a predicted average
    indoor screening level less than
    2 pCi/L

Elevated radon have been found in all
counties (Zone  1, Zone 2 and Zone 3).

Model Codes
Documents specifying requirements for
building, mechanical, plumbing,  and
fire prevention  installations.  Often the
basis for state and local building
codes.

Model Standard
A document that has been developed
and established to connote specified
consensus and approval of certain
techniques and standards.  A prescribed
level of acceptability or an approved
model used as a basis for comparison.
Voluntary technical guidance until
adopted into a building code. EPA has
published one for radon-resistant new
construction, called Model Standards
and Techniques for Control of Radon in
New Residential Buildings.

Passive System
Short for passive sub-slab
depressurization system.  Features to
reduce radon levels by utilizing barriers
to radon entry and stack effect
reduction techniques and the
installation of a PVC pipe running from
beneath the slab to the roof. Works by
using natural pressure differentials
between the air in the pipe, and the
rest of the home and the outside air.

Picocuries per liter (pCi/L)
A unit of measuring radon levels.

Polyethylene Sheeting
(used as soil-gas-retarder)
Plastic sheeting, about drop cloth
weight, used over gravel and under the
concrete slab to prevent soil gases from
entering a home.  The sheeting also
prevents the concrete from flowing into
the gravel and blocking air flow beneath
the slab.  Also used as a moisture
barrier.

PVC Pipe
A hollow plastic pipe generally used for
plumbing in home construction.

Slab
The concrete "floor" poured over the
ground between the foundation walls,
either at ground floor or basement
level.

SoiZ Gas
Any gas emanating from the soil,
including radon, methane, and water
vapor.
Stack Effect Reduction Techniques
Features that prevent or reduce the
flow of warm conditioned air upward and
out of the building superstructure. If
not reduced,  stack effect can actually
draw soil gas containing radon into the
lower levels of the house. Most of
these techniques are part of the
International Code Council's Model
Energy Code.

Sub-Membrane Depressurization
A system designed to achieve lower
sub-membrane air pressure relative to
crawlspace air pressure by use of a vent
drawing air from beneath the soil-gas
retarder membrane.  May be a passive
system (without fan) or active system
(with fan).

Sub-Slab Depressurization
A system designed to achieve lower
sub-slab air pressure relative to indoor
air pressure.  May be a passive system
(no fan) or active system (with fan).

Sump / Sump pit
A hole going below the slab  into which
water is drained in order to be pumped
out. Should  be sealed to prevent
radon from entering the home.
                                                                                                                            77

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Appendix
For  More   Information
Hotlines
National Safety Council
1-800-55-RADON
Answers consumers' specific questions
dealing with radon

Consumer Federation of America
Foundation's Radon Fix-It Program
1-800-644-6999
Answers questions for consumers with
high radon levels about how to fix the
problem

lAQInfo
1-800-438-4318
Answers specific indoor air quality
questions
Literature referrals

National Hispanic Indoor Air Quality Hotline
1-800-SALUD-12
Bilingual health  information specialists
provide answers about radon and
provide test kits to consumers with
bilingual instructions
7&~
EPA  Website
Check out the Indoor Environments
Division Home Page for information and
online publications about radon and
indoor air quality: www.epa.gov/iaq

Publications
Protecting Your Home from Radon
Second edition, 1997 (Kladder, D.L.,
Burkhart, J.F., Jelinek, S.R.). This
document details many radon-resistant
construction techniques, and includes
many useful photos and illustrations. It
is available in many public libraries or
from the National Environmental
Health Association at
1-800-513-8332 orwww.neha.org.

Radon-Resistant Construction and
Building Codes
This document provides general
information on radon, and an
explanation on each section in
Appendix D of the 1998 International
One and Two Family Dwelling Code. To
download the zipped PDF file visit the
International Code Council website at
www.intlcode.org/download/index.htm.

ASTME1465-92 Standard Guide for
Radon Control Options for the Design and
Construction of New Low Rise Residential
Buildings
This guide covers design and
construction methods for reducing
radon entry  into  new low-rise
residential buildings and is intended to
assist designers,  builders, building
officials and others involved in the
construction of low-rise residential
buildings.  Available from the
American Society for Testing and
Materials.  100 Barr Harbor Drive, West
Conshohocken, PA 19428-2959.  1-610-
832-9585 orwww.astm.org

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                                                                                                            Building Radon Out
EPA  Publications
Order copies in singles or in bulk from
the National Service Center for
Environmental Publications (NSCEP)
1-800-490-9198 or
www. epa.gov/ncepihome/index. html

Sample of available publications:

Building A New Home: Have You
Considered Radon?
EPA/402-F-98-001
Colorful brochure on the basics of
radon-resistant features.

Buying A New Home? How To Protect
Your Family From Radon
EPA/402-F-98-008
This brochure provides a quick
summary and diagram of the major
components of the radon reduction
system. Great for educating
homebuyers about radon.
Model Standards and Techniques for
Control of Radon in New Residential
Buildings
EPA/402-R-94-009

EPA Map of Radon Zones (color)
EPA/402-F-93-013

Radon Doesn't Have to be a Problem
EPA/402-V-95-015
12-minute video by the National
Association of Home Builders (NAHB)
explaining radon-resistant features.

Radon Resistant New Homes: A Public
Official's Guide to Reducing Radon Risk
EPA/402-V-95-014
Short video by the  National Conference
of States on Building Codes and
Standards (NCSBCS) on radon-resistant
features.
Other  Sources of Informaton

International Code Council (ICC)
5203 Leesburg Pike, Suite 708
Falls Church, VA 22041
(703)931-4533
(703) 379-1546 fax
www. intlcode. org
ICC publishes model codes, including
the International Residential Code (IRC).
The IRC contains an Appendix on
radon-resistant construction.  They also
publish a separate guide to radon-
resistant construction.
                                                                                                                       79

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Appendix
State  Radon  Contacts
For a complete, up-to-date listing, check the web page: www.epa.gov/iaq/radon/contacts.html.
               Alabama
               Alaska
               Arizona
               Arkansas
               California
               Colorado
               Connecticut
               Delaware
               District of Columbia
               Florida
               Georgia
               Guam
               Hawaii
               Idaho
               Illinois
               Indiana
               Iowa
               Kansas
               Kentucky
               Louisiana
               Maine
               Maryland
               Massachusetts
               Michigan
               Minnesota
               Mississippi
               Missouri
               Montana
               Nebraska
               Nevada
(800)582-1866
(800) 478-8324
(602)255-4845x244
(800) 482-5400
(800) 745-7236
(800) 846-3986
(860) 509-7367
(800) 464-4357
(202) 535-2999
(800) 543-8279
(800) 745-0037
(671)475-1611
(808) 586-4700
(800) 445-8647
(800)325-1245
(800) 272-9723
(800) 383-5992
(800) 693-5343
(502) 564-4856
(800) 256-2494
(800) 232-0842
(800) 438-2472 x2086
(800) RADON95
(800) 723-6642
(800) 798-9050
(800) 626-7739
(800) 669-7236
(800) 546-0483
(800)334-9491
(775)687-5394x275
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Puerto Rico
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virgin Islands
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
(800) 852-
(800) 648-
(505) 476-
(800) 458-
(919)571-
(800) 252-
(800) 523-
(405) 702-
(503)731-
(800) 237-
(787) 274-
(401)222-
(800) 768-
(800) 438-
(800) 232-
(800) 572-
(800) 458-
(800) 439-
(212)637-
(800) 468-
(360) 236-
(800) 922-
(888) 569-
(800) 458-
3345x4674
0394
8531
1158
4141
6325
4439
5100
4014x664
2366
7815
2438
0362
3367
1139
5548
0145
8550
4013
0138
3253
1255
7236
5847
Tribal Radon Program Offices
Hopi Tribe (Arizona)
Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona
Navajo Nation
Duckwater Shoshone-Paiute Tribe
             (520) 734-2442 x635
             (602)307-1527
             (520)871-7863
             (702) 863-0222 (Nevada)
SO

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                                                                                                               Building Radon Out
Note

As of 9/30/98, EPA no longer runs a
National Radon Proficiency Program.
Some states "regulate" providers of
radon measurement and mitigation
service providers and measurement
devices  by requiring registration,
certification, or licensing.  Some of
these states issue identification cards.
Call your state to learn more. You can
also contact the National
Environmental  Health Association's
(NEHA) National Radon Proficiency
Program at 1-800-269-4174
(radonprogfgiaol.com) or, the National
Radon Safety Board (NRSB) at (303) 423-
2674 (info@nrsb.org) for more
information on radon proficiency.
                                                                                                                            61

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This  toolkit is desined to:
   Answer your questions about radon and radon-resistant features in new homes




   Give you step-by-step guidelines and tips on how to install radon-resistant features
   Provide practical ideas on educating potential
ers about the features





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