Published On: October 12th, 2023

by Mark Longley
Sandwich resident and former GMCG Board Member

Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that diffuses up from New Hampshire’s granite-rich substructure and seeps into our living spaces and water. This gas can have harmful effects on human health. In fact, radon in the air is the leading natural cause of lung cancer in our country. The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) recommends that all state residences be tested every two to three years for radon levels, and is so concerned about the health hazards that it now provides free home test kits for all NH residents. (You may fill out an application online at for a free radon-in-air test kit.)

Area libraries are now teaming up with GMCG and to provide hand-held, electronic radon detectors that will be loaned out to their borrowers at no charge. The detection process is simple and the library will include clear instructions for sampling the air and interpreting the results. The website has information about mitigating radon in the home if radon levels are above prescribed limits.

Here’s a list of participating libraries: Chocorua Public Library, Cook Memorial Library (Tamworth), Effingham Public Library, Freedom Public Library, Madison Library, Ossipee Public Library, & Samuel H. Wentworth Library (Sandwich). Call your library or GMCG to reserve a detector. Or call GMCG if you have questions about the program.

DES Fact Sheet Radon in Your Home: An Overview for NH Homeowners: