Bill Ditchey
Central Pennsylvania


Cornerstone Home Inspection is licensed by The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania D.E.P. to do radon testing under license # 2837.

Pennsylvania Citizen's Guide to Radon (pdf file)


What is radon?            
 Radon is a cancer-causing radioactive gas resulting from the decay of uranium in the rocks, soil and ground of the earth. You cannot see, smell or taste radon but it may be a problem in your home. When you breathe air containing radon, you increase your risk of getting lung cancer. In fact, the Surgeon General has warned that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States today. If you smoke and your home has high radon levels, your risk of lung cancer is especially high.
Should you test for radon?
Testing is the only way to know your home’s radon levels. There are no immediate symptoms that will alert you to the presence of radon. It typically takes years of exposure before any health problems surface and then it may be too late. If you have a finished basement with an office, exercise room, bedroom, or living space, a radon test is strongly suggested. Even if you are purchasing a home with a radon mitigation system in place, an independent test can be performed to see that the system is working properly. If the home has an unfinished basement, and if you are considering finishing or enclosing the basement in the future, a radon test should be considered.

How I test for radon?
At Cornerstone Home Inspection I use the E-Perm system by Rad-Elec Inc. where your results are available at the end of the test period. There is no waiting for test results to come in the mail.
An E-PERM®, also known as an Electret Ion Chamber (EIC), is a passive integrating ionization monitor consisting of a very stable electret mounted inside a small chamber made of electrically conducting plastic. The electret, a charged Teflon® disk, serves as both the source for ion collection and as the integrating ion sensor.  Negative ions produced inside the chamber are collected on the positively charged electret, causing a reduction of its surface charge. The measurement of the depleted charge during the exposure period is a measure of integrated ionization during the measurement period. The electret charge is read before and after the exposure using a specially built non-contact electret voltage reader referred to as the SPER-1 Electret Voltage Reader. Using this data as input to the appropriate formula, one can determine the radon activity present over the duration of the test.