Airtech, the condensation, mould and radon specialist, is encouraging landlords to put in place planned maintenance over the summer period to protect their residents from the effects of radon.
With many people still spending more time at home than before the pandemic, healthy homes are essential for resident health and for landlords to meet their legal obligations under the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act 2018. Airtech are specialists in radon testing, remediation and servicing so are well placed to help landlords tackle radon in their properties in both the short and long term.
With the ongoing pandemic, radon awareness is more important than ever with households spending more time at home and so being exposed to radon for longer periods of time than before in radon-affected properties. Good lung health is paramount in helping protect against COVID-19, making tackling radon even more pressing. Radon affects lung health and is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the UK after smoking, with an estimated 1100 deaths each year estimated to be caused by exposure to the gas.
Landlords should also be aware they are liable to protect residents from radon under the Homes Act. Properties are assessed on a range of criteria, and they will be deemed unfit for habitation if there are serious defects in one or more of them. Radon is listed as a hazard under the category ‘Hazards under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System’. It is therefore vital for landlords to ensure that properties do not breach the Homes Act. If a home does not meet the standard and the property owner does not carry out the necessary repairs or maintenance, residents have the right to take them to court where a judge can issue an injunction forcing the work to be carried out. Airtech can help landlords by providing social housing providers a complete solution to protect both residents and landlords.
“Throughout the pandemic it has never been more important to protect the health of our lungs. With radon causing more deaths a year than carbon monoxide and potentially seriously damaging lungs, it is vital that landlords not only take action to measure radon levels and install measures to tackle it where needed, it’s also essential that they plan ongoing maintenance to ensure these measures continue to work effectively to reduce radon levels and protect residents”, explains Ian Neville, Sales Director at Airtech Solutions. “At Airtech we can help landlords by providing testing and, if levels are high, we can recommend and install remediation measures as well as ongoing maintenance of these measures.”
A naturally occurring colourless, odourless radioactive gas, radon disperses harmlessly into the air outdoors. However, once it finds its way indoors, through gaps and cracks in floors and walls, it may build up to potentially harmful levels. Every building has radon and in most areas the levels are low, however, some buildings in “Radon Affected Areas” have higher levels. Buildings in these areas need to be tested for radon.
Households and social housing providers in radon affected areas should have their properties tested to ensure they are not above the 200Bq/m3 action level set by Public Health England. Airtech offers social housing providers an effective and efficient programme, testing properties with small unobtrusive pods placed in a property to detect radon over a three-month period to ensure accurate testing. If levels are above the threshold, the good news is that high levels of radon in the home can be reduced with simple measures.
Airtech will recommend an appropriate solution to fit the levels of radon present. This could be installing positive input ventilation (PIV), which forces contaminated air out of a home by introducing fresh air into the property. Alternatively, in properties with very high levels of radon they may need to have an active radon sump, fitted with a fan. Sumps work effectively under solid floors, and under suspended floors if the ground is covered with concrete or a membrane. Once installed, it is important the equipment is serviced to ensure it remains in good working order to maintain maximum efficiency and keep radon at safe levels. This will also help stop the build-up of grease and dirt damaging the systems and avoid future breakdowns. Social housing providers can be assured that Airtech can offer a complete solution to radon prevention.
Airtech offers social housing providers a complete solution to help protect residents from the risks caused by radon gas in the home with 30 years of experience in radon prevention. The company offers a full range of products and services, from radon testing to full remediation of housing stock.