Have you tested your home for radon?

Kent County

Radon testing kit.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Kent County Health Department is providing free radon home test kits to residents for Radon Action Month.

Radon is a radioactive gas that is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. More than 20,000 Americans are killed by radon each year.

Radon, a naturally occurring gas, can seep into old and new homes alike through cracks in the foundation and walls. You cannot see, smell, or taste the gas so you must use a test kit to find it.

“Testing for radon is an easy and important step in protecting the health of your family,” Rusty Flewilling, supervising sanitarian with the Kent County Health Department, said in a statement. “The kit is easy to use. Simply hang a filter inside your house for a few days, then send it in a self-addressed, pre-stamped envelope for testing.”

Radon tests are then sent to the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy to be analyzed.

Michigan homes are especially prone to radon and Kent County is usually reported to have moderate to high levels of radon.

“Any home can have radon and every home can be fixed,” Steve Kelso, a spokesman for the health department, said in a statement.

If your home tests positive for radon, there is a system that can be installed that pulls air from the foundation of your house and releases it outside.

Testing kits are available all this month Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the KCHD’s main clinic location at 700 Fuller Ave. NE, Grand Rapids.

The Kent County Health Department has produced a few podcasts that explain the issues associated with radon. You can find those and more information here.

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