Radon test kits are great, but they do not continuously monitor deadly radioactive gasses within your home. After all, gas levels fluctuate daily so monitoring indoor air quality 24/7 with realtime updates is a far better option, especially if you reside in a part of the US that experiences high levels of radon. Here we will review some of the best home radon detectors and answer some commonly asked questions about them.
- What is a radon detector?
- What to look for in a radon detector
- The best radon detectors
- How much does a radon detector cost?
- Are radon detectors accurate?
- Can I install a radon detector by myself?
- Where is the best place to put a radon detector?
What is a radon detector?
A radon detector, as the name suggests, detects radon levels at your home or business.
It differs from a test kit. The difference is that a test kit collects the gas atoms over a certain period, and gets sent to a lab where it will be analyzed and then you get those results back. A detector stays in your home and constantly monitors radon levels, which you can access any time in realtime. A detector system can also trigger an alarm or send notifications to your smartphone when and if these gasses reach dangerous levels.
What to look for in a radon detector
Choosing the right radon detector for your needs can be pretty confusing considering the various options available. Consider the points listed below in your decision making process.
Accuracy and sensitivity: Always look for a radon detector that provides accurate and reliable readings. The device should be sensitive enough to detect very low levels of radon gas.
Ease of use: Choose one that is user-friendly and easy to set up. It should be intuitive, come with clear instructions and be hassle-free to operate.
Data Display and interpretation: Always consider the display features of the radon detector. Look for one that provides clear and easy-to-read data, including radon levels over time and any fluctuations.
Connectivity and notifications: Some detectors offer connectivity options such as Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, which allows you to monitor the readings remotely and receive notifications or alerts when radon levels exceed safe limits.
Additional features: Some radon detectors offer additional features such as built-in sensors for other indoor air quality parameters, temperature and humidity monitoring, or data logging capabilities. Assess whether these features align with your needs and preferences.
Price and warranty: Compare the prices of different radon detectors and consider the value for money. Additionally, check the warranty offered by the manufacturer to ensure you have proper coverage in case anything goes wrong.
The best radon detectors
Here we have reviewed 5 of the best radon detectors for home and office use: One from Elifecity, two from Airthings, the Safety Siren Pro 4 and the SunRADON lüft.
Elifecity home radon detector
The Elifecity Home Radon Detector offers a convenient solution for monitoring radon levels in your home or other indoor spaces. With its battery-powered, portable design, it’s easy to move from room to room, making it a suitable option for various settings. The on-screen display provides both long and short-term radon readings, allowing you to track changes over time and take action if levels become concerning.
The LCD screen offers a clear view of average daily, weekly, and long-term radon concentrations, giving you a comprehensive overview of the situation in your living space. The rechargeable battery further enhances the device’s convenience, enabling you to gather measurements from different areas without the hassle of frequent recharging.
However, the Elifecity radon detector does have its share of drawbacks. Multiple users reported inaccurate readings, which is a significant concern when it comes to a device that’s meant to help safeguard your health. While some users found it to be in line with their expectations, others experienced discrepancies when compared to professional tests or other radon detectors. Additionally, the lack of clear instructions for interpreting the display codes could lead to confusion for users who are unfamiliar with radon measurement devices.
Furthermore, there have been instances of the product arriving without proper packaging or instructions, which is disappointing for customers who expect a seamless experience upon receiving their purchase.
Multi-room radon and mold monitoring system from Airthings
If you need to monitor multiple levels or rooms in your home, then this multi-room monitoring system from Airthings is the way to go. The best part is that it not only monitors your home for radon levels but also for mold spores, various volatile organic compounds, humidity, and temperature.
The system, although consisting of multiple components, is easy to set-up. The Wave unit is a smart radon detector and the Wave Mini monitors for mold spores and various other air impurities, while also continuously checking indoor temperatures and humidity. The Hub device is where all of these components connect to. Connect the Hub to the internet and it will display all of the data straight to your iOS or Android smartphone.
Smart home integration is also easy and by doing so you can create customized alerts, control the system with voice commands, automate the use of air purifiers and dehumidifiers, get measurements on demand, and a whole lot more. It also easily connects to Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and IFTTT.
Your purchase includes the Airthings hub, ethernet cable, Wave 2nd Gen, Wave Mini, a power supply adaptor, a mounting bracket, a 12-month warranty, and customer support.
The product weighs just under 3 pounds and has dimensions of 6.5 x 8.1 x 5.1 inches.
Portable corentium radon detector by Airthings
The Airthings Corentium Home Radon Detector is a valuable tool for monitoring radon levels in your home. Its accurate readings, easy setup, and long-term monitoring capabilities provide peace of mind and a clear understanding of radon exposure.
It uses three AAA batteries, offering portability and convenience by eliminating the need for a constant power source. This battery-operated feature enhances its usability, allowing you to move it around effortlessly according to your monitoring needs.
The detector is designed for long-term monitoring and you can obtain quick results whenever you need them. Within just 24 hours of monitoring, the device presents on-screen results, offering you an initial glimpse into the radon levels prevalent in your surroundings. Furthermore, with prolonged usage, the accuracy of these results improves, contributing to its reliability as a monitoring tool.
Safety remains a paramount concern, and the Corentium Radon Detector addresses it with its audible and visual alarm features. The device is equipped to produce sound and light alarms, ensuring that you are promptly notified if and when the radon levels surpass established safety thresholds. This timely alert mechanism plays a crucial role in maintaining a secure environment.
You can also generate radon self-inspection reports with ease. This functionality proves handy in keeping track of and documenting the radon levels within your home over time. Whenever necessary, you can effortlessly create comprehensive reports, empowering you with essential data for necessary actions and further reference.
The only real drawback is that the device lacks an on/off button. So to turn it off, you need to first physically remove the batteries. This could be inconvenient for those who prefer turning off the device when not in use.
Safety Siren Pro 4 series radon detector
SafetySiren, a prominent name in the radon detection arena since 1993, has once again proven its prowess with the Pro4 Series.
A distinctive feature that sets the Pro4 Series apart is its ability to provide continuous monitoring of both short and long-term radon levels. Displaying readings on a clear digital screen, it ensures easy readability and immediate results regarding the radon situation within your living space.
For those who prioritize auditory alerts, the Pro4 Series won’t disappoint. Equipped with a responsive audible alarm system, it efficiently notifies you if radon reaches concerning levels. With three distinct audible alarm modes to choose from, the device caters to various preferences.
Also, to enhance user experience, the Pro4 Series incorporates a back-light mode for the digital display. This feature, while seemingly minor, makes a significant difference in ensuring effortless readability, regardless of ambient lighting conditions.
A noteworthy feature that instills further confidence in the Pro4’s performance is its fail-safe self-test mechanism. The device conducts a self-test every 24 hours, offering reassurance that it remains operational and reliable over extended periods.
Another advantage of the Pro4 Series is its user-friendly approach to data retention. While lacking battery backup power, the device retains data for previous locations. This feature allows for seamless transition and data comparison when relocating the device.
Its accuracy, continuous monitoring capabilities, and comprehensive insights into radon levels have proven invaluable. Though minor glitches were encountered during setup, they were easily resolved and did not detract from the device’s overall performance. For anyone seeking an effective and user-friendly radon detection solution, the SafetySiren Pro4 Series comes highly recommended.
SunRADON lüft: Wi-fi radon and indoor air quality monitor
The lüft Indoor Air Quality Monitor is a smart and functional choice for anyone looking to monitor their indoor air quality levels. The monitor includes a variety of sensors and can detect various pollutants such as radon, carbon dioxide, and VOC’s. It even has a 5-level mold risk indicator, making it an all-around air quality assessment tool.
Additionally, the monitor provides indoor and outdoor temperature and humidity readings, as well as the local Outdoor Air Quality Index for a comprehensive air quality assessment.
It’s compact, effective and requires no batteries as it plugs directly into any wall outlet. It even doubles as a nightlight.
Users can easily monitor their air quality levels with trend charts from the last day to 12 months and receive notifications when levels rise beyond the customizable thresholds. The monitor is also easy to use with a mobile app that provides a dashboard view, trend charts, mold risk indicator, outdoor air quality index, outdoor weather station, and access it all from anywhere.
The product weighs 12.6 ounces and has dimensions of 6.69 x 4.33 x 4.29 inches.
How much does a radon detector cost?
The cost of a radon detector can vary based on several factors, including the type of detector, features, brand, and accuracy. Here’s a general overview of the cost range for different types of radon detectors:
Short-Term Radon Detectors: Short-term detectors are typically lower in cost and provide measurements over a shorter period, usually a few days to several months. These detectors include charcoal canisters, alpha track detectors, and liquid scintillation detectors. Prices for short-term detectors can range from $10 to $50 or more, depending on the brand and features.
Continuous Radon Monitors: Continuous radon monitors provide real-time or near-real-time measurements and can offer more convenience and accuracy. These monitors use electronic sensors to provide ongoing data. Prices for continuous radon monitors can vary widely, ranging from approximately $100 to $500 or more, depending on the brand, features, and level of sophistication.
Smart Radon Detectors: Smart radon detectors are a type of continuous monitor that offers connectivity to smartphones or other devices through apps. They provide real-time data and notifications. Prices for smart radon detectors usually start around $100 and can go up to $300 or more.
Professional Testing Services: In addition to purchasing a radon detector, you can also hire a certified radon measurement professional to conduct testing in your home. Professional testing services can range in cost, typically starting at around $100 and potentially exceeding $300, depending on the scope of the testing and the location.
Are radon detectors accurate?
Yes, radon detectors can be accurate tools for measuring radon levels in indoor environments when used correctly and in accordance with manufacturer guidelines. Choosing the right type of detector, placing it properly, and following calibration and maintenance procedures will contribute to obtaining reliable and accurate radon level readings.
Can I install a radon detector by myself?
Yes, you can install a radon detector by yourself, as many radon detection devices are designed for easy and user-friendly installation. However, it’s important to consider a few key points before deciding to install a radon detector on your own:
Type of Radon Detector: There are different types of radon detectors available, including short-term detectors and continuous monitors. Short-term detectors typically require placement in a specific location for a certain period, after which you send the device to a laboratory for analysis. Continuous monitors, such as the ones we have reviewed here, provide real-time data and can be more straightforward to use.
Placement Guidelines: Proper placement of the radon detector is crucial for accurate readings. Different types of detectors may have specific placement requirements, such as placing them in the lowest livable area of your home or in rooms frequently used. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for optimal placement.
Calibration and Setup: Some radon detectors may require calibration or initial setup before use. Make sure to carefully read the user manual and follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer of your specific device.
Where is the best place to put a radon gas detector?
The best place to put a radon detector depends on the type of detector you have and the specific guidelines provided by the manufacturer. However, here are some general recommendations:
Inhabited Rooms: Place the radon detector in a room that is frequently occupied, such as a living room, bedroom, or family room. This will provide a more accurate representation of the radon levels where people spend the most time.
Lower Levels: Radon is a heavy gas that tends to accumulate closer to the ground. For short-term detectors, place them at the lowest livable level of your home, such as the basement or ground floor. For continuous monitors, consider placing them in different rooms on different levels to get a comprehensive understanding of radon distribution.
Away from Windows and Doors: Avoid placing the detector near windows, doors, or areas with significant drafts, as this can affect the accuracy of the readings.
Avoid Obstructions: Ensure that the detector is placed away from furniture, curtains, and other objects that could block or obstruct airflow around the device.
Stable Location: Choose a stable location where the detector won’t be easily knocked over or moved, as this could affect its accuracy.
Not Near HVAC Vents: Keep the radon detector away from heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) vents, as airflow from these systems can impact readings.
Avoid High Humidity: Radon detectors can be sensitive to high humidity levels. Avoid placing the detector in areas with excessive moisture, such as bathrooms or kitchens.
Follow Manufacturer Guidelines: Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for proper placement and installation of the specific radon detector you have. Different types of detectors may have varying placement requirements.
Investing in a reliable radon detector is a proactive step toward ensuring a healthy indoor environment for you and your loved ones. The best radon detectors mentioned in this page offers a range of features, from continuous monitoring to smart connectivity, catering to different preferences and needs. By choosing the right radon detector for your home, you can take control of your indoor air quality and take prompt action if radon gas levels become a concern. Remember, early detection and mitigation are key to reducing radon-related health risks.