Our “tip of the week” this week is a little step almost all builds require that costs $20-$80, but may save thousands down the road.
We’re talking about what’s called a “soil gas extraction pipe.” It’s sometimes called a “radon pipe.”
Here’s why you need one (apart from the fact that it’s mandated by Code): one of the major threats to home safety is radon gas, which is a byproduct of uranium decay. Uranium is not as uncommon as one might think, and in some parts of our region – think Utopia – there’s enough uranium in the bedrock to contaminate well water.
Radon (as well as other gases) will percolate upwards through the soil, and can even move through the concrete of a basement floor.
Code requires that all slabs-on-ground in occupied uses (residential, commercial) have a vapour barrier separating the ground from the concrete. It also requires that a 4” pipe penetrate that vapour barrier at some point.
This is the soil gas extraction pipe.
If your home ever tests positive for radon or some other soil gas, it’s a simple thing to attach a fan to vent those gases through the pipe and to the grand outdoors: which is far cheaper than digging up a basement floor.
Questions? Our inspection staff can assist. We serve the unincorporated areas of Charlotte and southern York counties, and the municipalities of Saint Andrews, St. George, Harvey and McAdam. Call us at 466-7369.