How to Select a Radon Contractor
Radon testing and radon mitigation are highly specialized trades. Selecting the right radon contractor can possibly be a life or death decision. Radon gas is the second leading cause for lung cancer as it kills more than 20,000 people annually. High levels of radon can occur anywhere in the United States, especially in Iowa. Because radon is a serious and common issue, selecting the appropriate contractor is serious business. Here are six basic questions to help you select a good radon contractor.
- Is the radon contractor licensed? There is not a national license for the radon trades. A client looking for a quality contractor should contact the State of Iowa Radon office to find licensed mitigators. It is also wise to ask if the installer/employee is licensed or certified. The company owner may have documents but the installers may be unskilled or inexperienced.
- Are they insured? Radon is risky business and radon mitigation systems sometimes require major alterations to the home. Make certain to check your contractor’s insurance certificate to be sure it has proper coverage and is up to date.
- What was your impression? Impressions are important and gut feelings can be a strong indicator. Did the contractor give you the impression that they truly care about what they do for a living? Were they presentable and respectful? In many cases if you had a bad first impression, you will likely have a bad last impression. A person’s demeanor can say a lot about the quality of their work.
- Did you get a firm price? Whenever dealing with any contractor it is important to agree to a firm price or written proposal before proceeding. Make sure the radon contractor provides a detailed scope of work and a contract before starting work. If a radon contractor cannot provide a firm price to install a radon mitigation system it may indicate a lack of experience. An experienced radon contractor should know exactly the cost to install a radon mitigation system or perform a radon test.
- Do they provide a guarantee? The EPA recommends that radon levels be lowered below 4 picocuries per liter. Most quality radon mitigation contractors will provide a written guarantee of performance. A quality radon mitigation contractor should be able to install the radon remediation system with confidence that the radon levels will be lessened. If a contractor refuses to provide a performance warranty it may indicate a lack of quality and experience.
- Are they locally owned? This may be a personal preference for some, but keeping dollars in the local economy is enriching for the whole community. Local ownership ensures that important decisions are made locally by people who live in the community and who fell the impacts of those decisions.