Being vigilant about the potential dangers to your health that exist in your home is an easy way to keep your family safe. While most homes are protected against well-known dangers like fire and carbon monoxide, there are other potential health hazards that many homeowners are not very aware of. Here are a few potential hazards that you can monitor your home for and correct if you find traces of them within the home.
A natural gas, radon can be present in the air or water anywhere, but it tends to only be a problem indoors, where it can collect and build up to a high concentration or be consumed. Radon can enter the home through cracks, construction joints, the space around pipes and other small gaps. When people are exposed to high levels of radon over a long period of time, their risk of lung cancer increases. Since radon is odorless and colorless, the only way to know if it is present in your home is to perform a test. You can purchase a radon testing kit at a home improvement store and find out in a matter of minutes if your radon levels are high.
If your home was built before 1978, there may be lead based paint still on the interior or exterior surfaces. This can pause a risk to your family’s health, particularly as the paint condition starts to deteriorate and flakes of the paint get into the air in the home. To find out if you have lead based paint in your home, you can have an inspector come in to perform tests. Home test kits also exist but they may not be as reliable.
Another risk that older homes carry is the possibility of asbestos, a fiber found within insulation used more often in older constructions. When undisturbed, asbestos ib
ers don’t pose a health risk. But if you begin remodeling or renovating the home, asbestos fibers can be released into the air. Exposure to asbestos can cause respiratory disease and lung cancer, but symptoms can take years to appear. Asbestos can be hard to tell from other types of insulation, but a certified contractor can identify it and call in professionals to remove it.
An ever present threat in humid climates, mold is a fungus that is present in microscopic form in the air around us. The presence of water can draw the mold particles that are in the air and cause them to grow and spread on the surfaces in your home. Mold can be hard to find because it prefers to grow in dark, cold spaces, like closets, basements and storage spaces. The symptoms of mold exposure can be hard to distinguish from common illnesses, and include things like shortness of breath, coughing and itchy eyes. Once you identify the presence of mold in your home, a professional mold removal team is the only way to ensure that all of the mold is removed and will not continue to grow in your home.
If you find a health hazard within your home that requires correction, the cost may be covered under your homeowners insurance policy. A qualified public adjuster can help you make a claim and get it approved. Click here to learn more.