What Is A Radon Mitigation System & How Does It Work? [Complete Guide For Homeowners]

Some homeowners are not familiar with the negative impact radon can produce. Radon gas is an unmoving, invisible, and odorless irritant that can cause lung cancer. And this is where the radon mitigation system comes into the picture. But how does a radon mitigation system work? Think no more because we have already researched this to share the answer with you.

A radon mitigation system is a process or device wherein the primary purpose is to lessen the radon gas in houses or buildings. Installing a radon mitigation system is necessary to bring the radon concentration down to an acceptable level.

The system works with the help of a fan drawing air from the ground. After that, it expels the air through a conduit that exits the building over the top of the roof.

People shouldn't ignore radon levels in all houses or buildings. A radon mitigation system is the most helpful thing to do with radon concerns. Please keep reading to learn everything about it, including its costs, types, components, and more. Without further ado, let's delve into the details!

What Is A Radon Mitigation System, And How Does It Work

Radon gas radiation detectors testing. Dosimetrist holding a portable gamma radiation dosimeter set on a long tube with sample probe .. - What Is A Radon Mitigation System & How Does It Work [Complete Guide For Homeowners]

As mentioned, the primary goal of a radon mitigation system is to reduce the levels of radon gas in a structure. Decreasing the radon levels means keeping the people inside a building safe, so you must consider installing a radon mitigation system. 

If the radon level in a home is four pCi/L (picocuries per liter) or above, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suggests taking action. Furthermore, the EPA recommends that American homeowners with radon levels between 2 pCi/L and four pCi/L think about getting rid of the problem.

With a high-quality radon mitigation system, indoor radon levels might decline to below two pCi/L all year round, which means the high radon levels' health risks will be stopped.

Depending on its foundation type, you can determine the appropriate radon mitigation system for your home. And it would be best to hire a licensed radon mitigation professional to do this. In addition, a radon mitigation expert may conduct diagnostic testing to help establish the best location for the system.

Remember that one type of this system works with the aid of a fan that pulls air from below ground and pushes it up and out of the structure through a duct that exits at the peak of the roof.

You can install the piping within or outside the house and vents outdoors. It is best to ensure that it is away from windows, doors, or any openings. To make the radon mitigation more effective and efficient, you should also guarantee that all the crevices and gaps have seals. 

Related: "What Are Safe Radon Levels In Your Home [Inc. In Your Basement]?"

What Are The Three Most Common Types Of Radon Mitigation Systems

If you are to have a radon mitigation system in your home, you should be aware that there are three most commonly used types of this system, and they are:

1. Sub-slab Suction

This image shows the initial pipe component of a sub-slab radon mitigation system. This is an active system which will include a fan to depressurize the area below the basement floor. The drain tile (pipe) will be covered with rock, which will be covered with a membrane and then a concrete slab will be poured. The pipe runs through a concrete footing for a supporting wall and the surrounding walls are poured concrete

It is the system that we mentioned earlier. A fan will be of help to draw the radon from the house's foundation and vent it outdoors.

2. Drain Tile Suction

It is the insertion of a pipe into the drain tile which releases the soil gases into the outdoor atmosphere. In addition, you can see the covers positioned on the sump baskets.

3. Sub-membrane

This type of radon mitigation system is prevalent in crawl spaces. You'll see a plastic sheet over the dirt floor that continues up the crawl space's wall. Also, sealing it is a must for this system. It works when radon pipe infiltrates through the plastic, sucking earth gas out of the crawl area and expelling it to the outdoors.

What Are The Parts Of A Radon Mitigation System

If you plan to install a radon mitigation system in your some, it would be best to familiarize yourself with its components. Let's look at the following:

Radon Fan

Attic Radon Vent Fan with Roof Trusses and Insulation

It is the most crucial radon mitigation system component. The ideal fan location is in an unconditioned spot. You can place it in either on outdoors, attic, or garage. Ensure that you will never put the radon fan in any habitable locations. Electricity is what powers the radon fan. Also, it connects to a switch or a wall outlet.

Radon Pipe

It is a PVC pipe that carries radon gas outdoors. There are vital elements to remember in the installation of a radon pipe, and they are:

  • Place it at least 10 feet above ground
  • It should be 10 feet away from any openings, like doors, windows, and those spaces to adjacent structures.
  • It should be beyond the border of the roof

Radon System Tag

Once installed, a radon mitigation system is complete, and a tag bearing the installer's contact information, installation date, and license number is affixed to the system by a certified radon expert.

U-tube Manometer

You'll know that the radon fan works if this apparatus indicates it. 

Active Notification Monitor

It is a valuable component that will let you know immediately if the fan is not operating correctly. 

Suction Pit

You can see this radon mitigation system component beneath the basement floor in the area where the pipe sucks radon gas from right beneath the foundation of the house and releases it outdoors.

How Much Does A Radon Mitigation System Cost

PVC pipes attached to the electrical motor of a residential radon mitigation system. TIt sucks radon rich basement ground air and removes it from the top of the house. Also helps with humidity

Know that the costs of a radon mitigation system will depend on the construction of your house and the kind of system to install. The radon mitigation system can vary between $750 to $5000. On the other hand, its installation cost in a single-family home can be an average of $1,400.

What Are The Additional Ways To Reduce Radon Levels

Aside from the radon mitigation system, there are still some other approaches you can do to reduce the radon levels in your home, and they are the following:

Natural Ventilation

The most effortless thing you can do to reduce the radon levels in your house is to open your doors, windows, and other openings. Increasing air ventilation means decreasing the radon gas because of the mixed indoor and outdoor air inside your house.

However, this is only a temporary technique for lowering the radon level. When you close the vents, doors, and windows again, especially if it will take 12 hours, expect the radon gas level to increase again. In addition, please take note of the following drawbacks this technique can produce:

  • it can lower the security in your house
  • loss of conditioned air
  • can significantly increase the cost of conditioning incoming outdoor air
  • cause discomfort 


One of the most effective ways to decrease the radon levels in your home is to seal all the crevices or gaps. Doing such a thing will aid in limiting the radon discharge into your home, causing the radon mitigation system to improve its effectiveness and efficiency. 

Sealing helps keep conditioned air inside where it belongs. But sealing has not been proven to reduce radon levels significantly or consistently when used independently. Finding all the entry points for radon and sealing them off is a challenging task. Whenever a house settles naturally, it creates new access points and re-activates older ones.

Heat Recovery Ventilation

People familiar with this technique also call it an air-to-air heat exchanger. And you can install it to supplement ventilation, which you badly need to decrease the radon gas inside your house. 

A heat recovery ventilator (HRV) is a device that helps with ventilation by drawing in outside air and then using the warm or cool air from the exhaust to condition the incoming air. However, HRVs are most effective when ventilating just the basement, even though they can reduce radon levels throughout the house.

Well-calibrated and regularly serviced systems can manage and maintain airflow at a persistent level throughout the year. Because of how well they filter pollutants out of the air, HRVs are a smart investment for households that generate a lot of indoor pollution.

Although heating and cooling expenses may rise dramatically due to HRV installation, they could be lower if it also includes heat recovery.

Home Pressurization

This technique uses a fan to bring air from the upper floors or the outside into the basement or living space to increase pressure. To keep radon out of the house, it works to build up pressure in the lowest point on the inside.

However, note that factors like the local climate, the type of building material used, the presence of other appliances, and the habits of the residents can all reduce the method's efficiency.

If you want to maintain the pressure needed to keep radon out, keeping the lowest level's doors and windows closed at all times would be best. The only exception is the doors used for the usual entrance and exit.

In this approach, more outside air could enter the building, leading to greater moisture and energy loss. Accordingly, you shouldn't even consider this procedure until you've tried the more common ones and they haven't reduced the radon enough.

What Are The Additional Important Things To Remember In A Radon Mitigation System

Measurements with a laser ruler in the basement as a part of the radon mitigation system installation. Selective focus on the foreground with defocused background.

  • It is a must to ensure that you clearly label the radon mitigation system. It will help prevent any accident involving system changes. 
  • You should do a post-radon mitigation system test. It would be best to conduct this 24 hours after the installation and operation of your new system. 
  • There should be a provided warranty copy and operations and maintenance instructions for the system.
  • It is necessary to obtain an electrical permit to construct a radon mitigation system, which involves wiring to run the radon fan. When hiring a contractor, ensure they have the proper documentation to perform the task legally.

Related: "Can You Be In A House During A Radon Test?"


All homeowners should be aware of how bad radon gas side effects are, potentially affecting everyone inside a home. There is no more important than your and your family's health, so have a radon mitigation system installed in your house as early as you can. Immediately hire a contractor to have your home checked for radon gas levels. 

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