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"Protect Your Investment" Article for homeowners, reprinted from the Post Dispatch, in Adobe Reader

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Things to Know About Mold

  1. Too much exposure or certain types of mold could cause allergic reactions, asthma, rashes & other respiratory complaints.
  2. Control indoor mold growth by to controlling moisture. This includes fixing leaky pipes and reducing indoor humidity to 30-60%.
  3. Clean and dry any damp or wet materials and furnishings within 24-48 hours to prevent mold growth. Absorbent materials like ceiling tiles, plasterboard or wood, may need to be replaced.
  4. Molds can grow on virtually any substance, providing moisture is present.
  5. In areas where there is a perpetual moisture problem, do not install carpeting.
Source: EPA, New York City Health Dept.

Things to Know About Radon

  1. What is radon? It is a naturally occurring colorless, odorless, and tasteless radioactive gas,generated in rock and soil,that creeps up to the outside air. It can seep into buildings through foundation cracks or openings and build up to much higher concentrations indoors. Radon is a heavy gas, which accounts for its tendency to collect in basements.
  2. What level of radon is unsafe? There is no safe level of radon--any exposure poses some risk of cancer. In two 1999 reports, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) concluded after an exhaustive review that radon in indoor air is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. after cigarette smoking. The NAS estimated that 15,000-22,000 Americans die every year from radon-related lung cancer.
  3. How do you know if you have radon? Testing the air in your home is the only way to know if you are at risk from radon. The EPA and the Surgeon General recommend testing for radon in all rooms below the third floor. (Tests cannot be used to predict whether a person's exposure will cause harmful health effects, since everyone's response to exposure is different.)
  4. How do you reduce radon? The EPA estimates that about 1 in 15 homes nationwide have radon at levels at which they recommend taking action to reduce concentrations. The best method for reducing radon in your home will depend on how radon enters your home and the design of your home. For example, sealing cracks in floors and walls may help to reduce radon.
Source: EPA

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