Did you know that radon causes lung cancer? There are many as as 20,000 deaths every year in the United States attributed to radon. It occurs naturally in the soil and can enter the home through the openings and cracks in the basement floor or the slab… especially the floor drain or sump lid, as these are typically the largest opening.
We—Harold Westdal and Allan Grant— knew this when we started Dranjer as a side business in 1986.
Research showed the danger of radon to families; this danger was prominent especially to young children who spend much time inside the home. At the same time, homes were becoming tighter to save energy. We were concerned for the health of our families. The idea was simple: there had to be an easy, effective way to stop radon gas from entering through a drain or sump lid, while also allowing water to drain.
So, we designed products, formed a company, obtained a patent, and registered a trademark. Then we worked!
Most importantly, we installed a Dranjer in our own homes—taking care to measure the level of radon that was still making its way in. Thanks to Dranjer, radon was down to acceptable levels. At that point we realized this is an important and cost effective product.
Many homeowners hear about the dangers of radon and intend to do something about it, but life gets in the way. Builders and air quality regulators want to make homes safer, however they are reluctant to add costs. Jurisdictions require radon testing of homes for sale.
The market is small. There will not be a multi-million dollar IPO in this business.
We continued with Dranjer while pursuing our full-time careers. Now we’re retired from those careers, so we can tweak product design and assembly processes and deal with the issues that come up in a small business.
As one observed, “You won’t make a living with Dranjer, but you will save some lives.” This may not be finding the cure for cancer, but preventing some is rewarding.
An economical first step is to install a Dranjer to seal the single largest opening in the concrete floor with a Dranjer. Independent tests show that simple step reduced radon by an average of 46%.
Dranjer enjoys the long term support of several loyal dealers who sell wholesale and retail.