Troubleshooting Guide – About Hard Houses
Post Mitigation Levels Come Back High!?
Radon can be HARD. It’s on the top of the first page of our website for a reason. We’ve worked on houses where we were the 4th company to work on it. It can be just difficult sometimes.
First, for all kinds of systems, consider:
- Unbalanced HVAC System? Is there a large basement vacuum-effect being created as a result of too much air being drawn from the basement by furnace / ac system? Are the combustion air return ducts obstructed (blocked w a towel due to draftiness?) or not present?
- Are there unique Radon Entry Paths? Old ducts under slab? Old wells or cisterns? Rain driven soil pressure increases?
- Is there a hidden or inaccessible crawl space that wasn’t addressed?
- Is there an untreated addition to the Home?
When a “core” system is having problems
- The issue is usually poor airflow under the slab. Non-permeable soil. Compacted soil. Expanded soil. Poor “communication” under the slab. Is there a footer under the slab in the middle of the basement?
- Is there a drainage system in the house that wasn’t used? Sump pit? If so…and our system isn’t fully connected to the drain at the sump pit or at some other point…then that drainage system isn’t working FOR us…it’s working significantly AGAINST us. This is very often a problem if the system was done this way.
When a drain-based mitigation system is having problems:
- Water in the drain?
- Was the drain crushed during construction?
- Drain connected to storm sewer?
- Suction too close to an unvalved window well drain [vent]?
- Construction debris in the drain?
- Dead animal in the drain? [We’ve SEEN IT ALL!]
Combination Radon System
- Is it drawing so much from the crawl space that our pressure isn’t “making it” to the core portion of the system? If so…install a “damper,” which is basically a value that reduces airflow to one portion of the system while extending it to the other.
Builder Installed Passive Systems
- In some new construction homes…the have A LOT of things tied into the sub-grade. Those stub outs SHOULD work…but they don’t. Sometimes they were designed right, but installed improperly during a rush to finish. The good news is that we can try all of the things listed above and get the problem fixed.
Using Manometer-Measured System Pressure to Diagnose Problems:
- Are we currently at max pressure for the fan that’s in place?
- Are we currently at max flow for the fan that’s in place?
- Do the ratios make sense? Or do we need to get more aggressive in pressure? Or in flow?
General Possible Solutions:
- Larger Fan [Suction vs Volume]
- Additional Suction Points?
- Better Location for Suction?
- Find the void. Use plumbing trenches. Locate and tap into airflow pathways
- Install a second system?
- Abandon the old system and start over?
A No-Risk, No Hassle, Free Way to Learn More
We offer a quick, easy 20 minute estimates to provide you with pricing and other valuable information. Just call our main office line at 303-462-5000 and say, “I saw you on the web and I’d like to get a proposal for a Radon Mitigation System” and we can set up a time that works for you. You’ll never get any sales-pitch whatsoever. We love to do these no-charge consultations, even if you’re not ready to move forward right now. Our goal is to make it as easy and painless as possible to look into this with no-strings attached. (We’re also happy to do phone consultations to give you the basics and answer any questions you have.)