Radon tests focus for state


January 13, 2023

The number of home radon tests completed during real estate sales in 2022 was down 39 percent from 2020, even though home sales did not decline, a new analysis from the Minnesota Department of Health showed last week.

Reduced testing means fewer home buyers are identifying and reducing this cancer-causing hazard.

The health department analyzed professional radon testing data for 2020 to 2022 and found that in 2022 there were 19,976 real estate tests reported by professionals, which was lower than the 32,537 tests reported in 2020.

The colorless, odorless gas occurs naturally in Minnesota soils and is found at elevated levels in about 40 percent of all Minnesota homes. It is the leading cause of lung cancer among nonsmokers. Each year radon kills more than 21,000 people across the country. While there are ways to test for radon and fix it, many people are unaware of the risks.

During January, Radon Action Month, MDH is making a push to urge everyone to test their home for radon, including when purchasing a property.

Air Check’s test kits can be purchased for $2 from Carlton County Public Health and Human Services (14 N. 11th St., Cloquet, ground floor front desk). If a high result (4 picocuries per liter) is found, a second followup short-term test is provided free of charge. Find a short video about the tests at https://youtu.be/nN6dZpmBT-E. More general information about testing can be found on the Minnesota Department of Health’s website at health.state.mn.us.

For general questions about radon, contact the Minnesota Department of Health’s Indoor Air Unit at 651-201-4601 or email [email protected].


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