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Old 12-01-2010, 07:52 PM   #1
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


I just bought Roxul batt insulation @ Home Depot. When I got home I read on the Package, That the material is manufactuired from a stone derivative. I am a home inspector, and since radon comes out of the ground ,I wondered if the insulation has been tested for radon? Does anyone know if the factory or a third party tests the insulation for radon before it goes out the door? If not I will do a test that requires at least 48 hours and then I send sealed container off to test lab to receive results in a few days.

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Old 12-01-2010, 08:36 PM   #2
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


Roxul is mineral wool. Fiberglass is also made from a stone derivative(sand). Both are processed in manufacturing facilities at very high temperatures that totally eliminate the structure and burn off gases.

If you are really worried or really, really worried (paranoid) take a look at cellulose that is from trees, etc. but does have a mineral added for fire resistance and mold prevention.

I am also a home inspector and that requires nothing more than being a generalist on different phases of residential properties and know how the gimmicks work on selling test kits and mail order testing services to increase income through fear. Being a registered structural engineer and expert witness with many years under the belt and writing codes and standards, I just don't bother with possibilities and just justified potential problems.

If you are seriously concerned about the problems with stone, I hope you bothered to have radon test of the natural soil under your home even though radon is rare and is limited to some specified rock types and structures.

Dick

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Old 12-01-2010, 08:43 PM   #3
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


Radon is a gas. One it dissipates it's gone. Even if that product is "soaked" in radon, airing it out would totally get rid of it.
Radon in the ground is an issue because there's a constant source leaching the gas up into the home.
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Old 12-01-2010, 09:33 PM   #4
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


Should we be concerned about stone counter tops, granite, slate and marble tiles, and concrete?

How about salt and sheet rock? Both of those are stone products. A common constituent of paint is TiO*2, which is the mineral rutile.

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Old 12-01-2010, 10:05 PM   #5
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


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Originally Posted by concretemasonry View Post
Roxul is mineral wool. Fiberglass is also made from a stone derivative(sand). Both are processed in manufacturing facilities at very high temperatures that totally eliminate the structure and burn off gases.

If you are really worried or really, really worried (paranoid) take a look at cellulose that is from trees, etc. but does have a mineral added for fire resistance and mold prevention.

I am also a home inspector and that requires nothing more than being a generalist on different phases of residential properties and know how the gimmicks work on selling test kits and mail order testing services to increase income through fear. Being a registered structural engineer and expert witness with many years under the belt and writing codes and standards, I just don't bother with possibilities and just justified potential problems.

If you are seriously concerned about the problems with stone, I hope you bothered to have radon test of the natural soil under your home even though radon is rare and is limited to some specified rock types and structures.

Dick
This is why I enjoy reading your posts Dick, you never "sugar-coat" it, regardless of who you may upset..............
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Old 12-01-2010, 10:06 PM   #6
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


Hey guys,I don't have an agenda here. I don't know how the stone is processed and radon comes from decaying Uranium and has a very long half life. I have done many radon tests and have never had a zero reading. Radon is everywhere in varying degrees, and is the second leading cause of lung cancer, if you check with the Amertican Cancer Society.If there is radon in a material, airing it out will not get rid of the radon, it will continue to off gas. Radon is not an issue on the exterior of the house because it is not in a confined area. I am not looking for a fight just some factual answers.
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Old 12-01-2010, 10:49 PM   #7
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


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radon comes from decaying Uranium and has a very long half life..
Four days actually


http://wjllope.rice.edu/saxumsubluceo/LLOPE_StoneRadRn.pdf

The above is the only scientific source I could find regarding radon in building materials. All the other sources were commercial endevors with an agenda to sell.

The work by Dr Lope does indicate that stone could lead to dangerous levels of radon in a house. But actual statistics are lacking. As I pointed out in my earlier post, stone products are found throughout a house. Is there a hew and cry about concrete? And this test you state that you will have done, what exactly does it prove? That there is radon, or that there is a dangerous amount of radon? Tests have shown that outside surface air from several areas will test positive for radon. Should these counties be emptied of people?

I was also surprised that most of the research for radon occurrence in building materials is a couple of years old. This makes me tend to think that by and large the scientific community believes that there are areas of eco-, enviro- and geo-toxicology which are more pressing.
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Old 12-01-2010, 10:49 PM   #8
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


When you are looking at individual materials in a home as a whole structure and giving advice all you can do is sell tests and inspections of the structure and how it handles the emissions from the soil. Testing individual materials is very meaningless even though I do have some professional opinions on the various products.

Generalities about national studies on groups have little to do with your purchase of a material, since the application and design of the the structure totally dwarfs some of the properties/parameters of the conclusions.

Since you know nothing about the materials and processing of raw materials and "airing it out" out is a pretty vague, unscientific and feeble definition. Processing materials at 1500 - 2000F All you can do is rely on actual figures and no structure will show no radon if you test enough. If you look at life expectancy, you will find that people that have historically lived in stone or masonry homes have a better chance that those that live in lightweight structures since they are probably more effected by the interior systems.

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Old 12-01-2010, 11:08 PM   #9
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


Again- I'm not interested in your opinion- just the facts. Go to this web site to see the possible radon from building materials. greenbuildingelements.com/.../radiation-and-radon-from-green-building- materials/
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Old 12-01-2010, 11:54 PM   #10
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


A few facts might be relevant. First, radon is a daughter product of the decay of radium, and is not directly produced by the decay of uranium. Some isotopes of uranium have a decay path that includes radium, so radon is indirectly produced by the decay of uranium. Since radium is relatively common in certain types of rock, specifically granite, radon is a naturally occurring decay product of many forms of granite, and other naturally occurring rocks.

Radon comes in over thirty known isotopes, the most common of which is Radon 222, with a half life of approximately 3.8 days. Radon is an alpha emitter. Alpha emitters include radioactive isotopes of elements such as plutonium and americium, and are generally considered to be hazardous if inhaled due to alpha damage to the lungs.

At room temperature, radon is a dense gas, and is chemically inert. Due to the density of radon, it tends to sink to the floor in a closed building, and can therefore exhibit a gradient (the zone nearest the floor may be substantially more radioactive than the ceiling. Due to the short half life, radon is only a problem when it is continuously generated, such as occurs if your house is built over radium bearing rock. Radon is also relatively soluble in water, therefore can be a problem if you use well water, and the radon offgases.

Is Roxul a problem? The only way to know would be to test it. Certainly any radon that is directly attached to the Roxul is irrelevant, since it disappears rapidly due to the short half life. The relevant issue if whether Roxul includes radium, either due to direct presence or through decay of uranium. This can only be determined via direct testing.

Essentially all naturally occurring and man made materials are radioactive to some degree, due to the presence of natural background radioactivity in soil and rocks, and due to the omnipresent background of radiation due to the history of above ground nuclear testing in the U.S., France, and other nations. Whether the background radiation is a significant problem is controversial due to the difficulty evaluating causal relationships between low dose, long term radioactive dosing and health effects.

Claims that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer are wildly speculative in my opinion, based largely on limited studies of uranium miners, with limited relationship to typical homeowner doses. I am NOT SAYING radon is OK, simply that there is very little scientifically valid, generally accepted data, but there is plenty of rampant speculation, some of which comes from sources who benefit financially.
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Old 12-02-2010, 12:31 AM   #11
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


billions of humans have lived in structures built from, and on top of stone (minerals) since humans learned how to construct shelter. before that they lived in caves.

when you add it up, the percentage of people who have been adversely effected is kind of low.

i would be far more concerned with natural disasters (flood plains, wildfire, hurricanes, tornadoes...etc) yet plenty of folks continue to build/rebuild under those known conditions.

it is a fact that traveling by automobile carries a high health risk. but we all still do it.

how complicated are you willing to make your life to avoid risk?

and you cant ask a question on an internet forum without getting opinions.

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Old 12-02-2010, 10:05 AM   #12
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


I smell that the original poster is just selling a service or testing and not having a "real" problem. This based on the situation that he actually "bought" the insulation, but based the post on a site on the internet.

The term "stone derivative" is an interesting term, but rock or stone in various sizes/derivatives have been proven to be a very acceptable and is considered a "green" building material in most developed countries and is even considered preferable to wood in terms of renewable or recyclable.

Radon investigation was a fad a few years ago and could be a concern in some very isolated areas.

Chasing radon is similar to trying to ban glass in homes because the raw material (sand - a "stone derivative") is basically high content silica and people do worry about silicosis.

Dick

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Old 12-02-2010, 12:21 PM   #13
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


Quote:
Originally Posted by stretchonme View Post
Again- I'm not interested in your opinion- just the facts. Go to this web site
That web site by and large doesn't offer facts, just numbers thrown up with no context


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and you cant ask a question on an internet forum without getting opinions.
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Old 01-04-2012, 07:51 PM   #14
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


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Originally Posted by stretchonme View Post
I just bought Roxul batt insulation @ Home Depot. When I got home I read on the Package, That the material is manufactuired from a stone derivative. I am a home inspector, and since radon comes out of the ground ,I wondered if the insulation has been tested for radon? Does anyone know if the factory or a third party tests the insulation for radon before it goes out the door? If not I will do a test that requires at least 48 hours and then I send sealed container off to test lab to receive results in a few days.

I was wondering this exact thing today. Have you had a chance to test roxul?

I understand that a certain amount of radon is present in many building products, but it would be interesting to know where roxul sits on the emission scale. This may be suprising to some, but big money making corporations dont always have publc safety as their top priority...
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Old 01-04-2012, 08:41 PM   #15
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Radon in Roxul insulation?


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Originally Posted by stretchonme View Post
I just bought Roxul batt insulation @ Home Depot. When I got home I read on the Package, That the material is manufactuired from a stone derivative. I am a home inspector, and since radon comes out of the ground ,I wondered if the insulation has been tested for radon? Does anyone know if the factory or a third party tests the insulation for radon before it goes out the door? If not I will do a test that requires at least 48 hours and then I send sealed container off to test lab to receive results in a few days.
Better not stay anyplace with stone counters, cutting boards, knick knack stones, etc..

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