National Radon Awareness Month

rn_entryJanuary is National Radon Awareness Month and although are NOT radon experts, we are proud to be designated by the MN Department of Health as a Gold Standard Radon Resistant Builder.

To help raise awareness we obtained information directly from The MN Dept of Health’s website. Minnesota residents can purchase discounted radon test kits by visiting MN Dept of Health/Radon Test Kits.

What is Radon?

Radon is a colorless, odorless radioactive gas that seeps up from the earth.

It is produced from the natural decay of uranium that is found in nearly all soils. Uranium breaks down to radium. As radium disintegrates it turns into radioactive gas…radon. As a gas, radon moves up through the soil and into the air you breathe.

While radon is present everywhere, and there is no known, safe level, your greatest exposure is where it can concentrate-indoors. And where you spend most time-at home. Your home can have radon whether it be old or new, well-sealed or drafty, and with or without a basement.

To download a brochure on keeping your home safe from Radon, click here.

How does Radon enter your home?

Since radon is produced from soil, it is present nearly everywhere. Because soil is porous radon gas is able to move up through the dirt and rocks and into the air we breathe. If allowed to accumulate, radon becomes a health concern.

Two components that affect how much radon will accumulate in a home are pathways and air pressure. These components will differ from home to home.

1.  Pathways are routes the gas uses to enter your home and found anywhere there is an opening between the home and the soil. (detailed info here)

2.  Air pressure between your home’s interior and the exterior soil is what helps to draw radon gas into the home via pathways.

Air Pressure

Minnesota homes commonly operate under a negative air pressure, especially during the heating season. What this means is that the air pressure inside your home is typically lower then the surrounding air and soil, and this creates a vacuum that pulls soil gases, such as radon, into the home via pathways. Even if the ground around the house is frozen or soaked by rain, the gravel and disturbed ground underneath the house remains warm and permeable, attracting radon gas from the surrounding soil.

Other factors also contribute to air pressure changes in a home, including:


Stack Effect
As warm air rises to the upper portions of a home, it is displaced by cooler, denser outside air. Some of that displaced air comes from the soil.


Down Wind Effect
Strong winds can create a vacuum as they blow over the top of the home.


Vacuum Effect
Combustion appliances like furnaces, hot water heaters and fireplaces, as well as exhaust fans and vents, can remove a considerable of air from a home. When air is exhausted, outside air enters the home to replace it. Some of this replacement air comes from the underlying soil.

Testing your home

A radon test is the only way to find out how much radon is in your home and if you and your family are at risk. Performing a radon test on your own is easy, inexpensive and takes only a few minutes of your time. The results of a properly performed radon test will help determine if you need to take further action to protect yourself from the health risks of radon. Minnesota residents can purchase discounted radon test kits by visiting MN Dept of Health/Radon Test Kits.

What does LDK First Impressions do to help with Radon?


As a builder we install a passive radon system vented through the sump pump. This passive system is designed to achieve lower sub-slab air pressure relative to indoor air pressure by use of a vent pipe through the sump pump, routed through the houseconnecting the sub-slab area with outdoor air (via the roof) thereby relying on the convective flow of air upward in the vent to draw air from beneath the slab. (See sample in upper right diagram here)

This system becomes an active system if a homeowner elects to have us install a radon vent ran. This fan is attached to the vent pipe of the passive system allowing it to drawing air from beneath the slab.


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LDK First Impressions About LDK First Impressions

LDK First Impressions is a boutique, residential home builder in Minnesota. With 35 years of home building experience LDK First Impressions works with you to ensure your new home building experience is everything you need it to be.


  1. LDK First Impressions LDK First Impressions says:

    We are excited to provide a free radon test kit to EVERYONE who participated in our Facebook Radon Test Kit giveaway! Those who participated Jan 10th-13th will receive a kit. Please click on the following link so we can send the test kits directly to you. /free-radon-testing-kit/

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