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Best Overall: Safety Siren Pro Series3 Radon Gas Detector
Because there’s nothing like regular testing for peace of mind when it comes to the health and welfare of your family, a continuous radon detector like this one is well worth the money. It begins working within 48 hours and continuously samples the air and displays hourly updates. The results are displayed as short-term and long-term radon levels—it stores up to five years of results. An alarm will sound if the amount of radon reaches 4 pCi/L, the level at which the EPA recommends taking action to reduce radon exposure in your home.
Best Budget: Kansas State University Radon Test Kit
If you would rather test your home for radon once than install a continuous detector, a passive device is a better choice for you. Kansas State University offers low cost radon testing kits—a short term, passive kit (two to four days) and a long term, passive one (3 to 12 months)—so folks at any budget can test for the deadly gas. While the EPA-recommended test is affordable and reliable, it does need to be sent into a lab for analysis. Shipping takes about seven to ten days (longer during university breaks).
The cost of the kit includes first class return postage, though the website notes the test must be received at the lab within 10 days after completion, so they suggest customers may want to consider using another more reliable (read: pricier) shipping option to ensure it arrives on time.
Best Continuous: Airthings Corentium Home Radon Detector
Because cracks and holes in your home’s foundation can happen at any time, radon isn’t only a risk when you first move in. (In fact, the EPA recommends you test your home for radon every two years.) You can be absolutely sure you and your loved ones are safe by using a continuous radon gas detector; this battery-powered option monitors daily, weekly and long-term average radon levels.
Though it’s a pricey investment, there are no additional lab fees and you can create a self-inspection radon report whenever you need one. One satisfied reviewer reports that they compared the results to those from a 48-hour passive test and they received near identical results, noting that it was easy to use and worked right out of the box.
Best Passive Test: FIRST ALERT Radon Gas Test Kit, RD1
Another inexpensive option that will give you results faster, this test will let you know your home's radon levels in just five to seven days. There’s also a rush-fee option if you need the results sooner. Tests are available as either short term or long term. Short term is a good choice if you are in a hurry to move and want to make sure your future new home is safe, but long term tests give you a better sense of your home's levels, which may change over time.
One test measures up to 2,000 square feet of open floor space. While lab fees are included in the cost of the kit, you’ll need to pay extra for postage. One reviewer who bought two kits found that the instructions were easy to follow and that the results came back quickly, though it did take up to three days for the test to ship back to the lab.
Best Smart Test Kit: Airthings Wave Smart Radon Detector with App
Often, you’ll be checking for radon in your basement where it can be all-too-easy to forget, especially if yours is unfinished. That’s where this continuous detector comes in. You can check your results right from your smartphone or your smart home device with Alexa or Google Assistant, thanks to the detector's corresponding app.
The app will also track trends for you, so you can spot immediately if there’s something out of the ordinary with your levels. One reviewer says it took less than three minutes to set up and it was so simple, they bought a second one for their bedroom.
Best Dual Test: Accustar Short Term Activated Carbon Radon Test Kit
Set these open-face charcoal canisters in a large space or in two rooms, or use one on the floor and one on a shelf for a “stack effect” to get a variety of readings. After you’ve tested the area for 48 to 96 hours, seal the test and send it back to the company in the prepaid envelope. Your results will be available online in a matter of days. A mailing label and lab costs are included in the price of the kit. Reviewers say that the test results are returned quickly in a format that's easy to understand, so you'll know if you need to take action to reduce the levels of radon in your home.
Best for Fast Results: Air Check 3-7 Day Radon Test Kit
If you need immediate results, Air Chek can process your test and share the results the same day that it arrives at their lab. Simply place or hang the sampler test in the area you are checking out for three to seven days, then mail the kit back in (a prepaid mailer is included in your purchase).
If your test arrives at the laboratory facilities on a business day (Monday through Friday), it will be tested and your results will appear online that day. You can also request a complete written report which comes with actions items, should you need to reduce the levels of radon in your home. One test works for up to 2,000 square feet.