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Of all the places you can feel safe, it’s your home.
But is it really, considering your appliances can be the source of dangerous electromagnetic fields?
Better known as EMF, electromagnetic fields are a source of radiation that can be emitted by phones, Bluetooth devices, WiFi routers, and other electrical equipment.
When absorbed by the body, this type of radiation can lead to various health complications.
While this information can be alarming, the good news is that we can do something about it.
The critical steps to prevention start with understanding how EMF is measured and what levels are unsafe.
So today, we’ll show you how to understand your EMF readings and how you can determine the danger zones in your home.
EMF Is Measured in What Units?
In the United States, the unit of measurement for EMF is in Milligauss (mG).
But when you’re measuring EMF radiation, you have to consider its frequency and strength, too.
Determining the EMF frequency can tell you what the source of radiation is. Frequency is measured in hertz (Hz) and can be used to assess whether your home’s wiring contains dirty electricity.
Strength, as it concerns you and your exposure level, is largely based on your proximity to the source and which type of radiation you are exposed to.
When talking about magnetic field strength, the measurement is in milligauss (mG), but for electric field radiation, it is commonly read in volts per meter (V/m).
Readings That Are Considered High
Knowing how to measure EMF radiation around your home should be a top priority.
But it’s equally important to understand which readings are cause for concern.
When looking at EMF readings, you need to be aware of the 3 main categories to take note of – magnetic, electric, and radiofrequency radiation.
While safety guidelines from various companies differ in their understanding of high EMF readings, the safest measurement to consider is below 1 mG.
If you perform readings in your home, you may find measurements between .4 mG to 1 mG.
This is normal and safe, considering that these spaces are where you spend most of your time.
However, if you reside in an apartment complex, the chances are that your readings will be way higher.
The 1 mG limit may be extremely far from the guidelines of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection or ICNIRP, which advises that the maximum exposure limit is 2000 mG.
But that “safety limit” is astronomical when you consider the research that’s been done showing damagin at much lower levels.
Another important thing to note is that you will find EMF readings spike when you put the meter close to electronics.
When it comes to exposure and safety limits, distance is key.
That means you should make sure you limit electronic use in areas like your bedroom and living room since that’s more than likely where you spend most of your time.
You also want to be mindful of where electronic-heavy rooms like a home office is located in relation to your bedroom (because EMFs travel through walls).
Unlike magnetic and radiofrequency fields, electric field readings are much less discussed and researched.
Nevertheless, they still pose a threat in your home.
In your living quarters, try to ensure measurements of electric fields stay below 10 V/m (volts per meter) since anything above that is considered dangerous.
In some places, like Europe for example, readings above 10 V/m is still considered a normal reading, but to be safe, it’s still highly recommended that readings remain below 10 V/m.
When conducting electric field readings, measurements below 1 V/m are generally safe.
Readings between 1 to 5 volts per meter deserve a closer look to see if changes can be made to lower them.
Though this range doesn’t point to imminent danger, electro sensitive people can still be affected.
Now if the reading is higher than 10 V/m, or even reaches upwards of 50 V/m, it’s time for you to act and make changes. At such a range, numerous health problems and biological abnormalities can occur over a period of time.
Lastly, we have radio frequencies that are measured in milliWatt per square meter or mW/m².
Of all the EMF radiation types, this is the one that is most damaging and pervasive, especially since it’s present in devices you use every day.
These include WiFi routers, cellphones, tablets, microwaves, Bluetooth, cell towers, and more.
In terms of readings, measurements above 1 mW/m² are high and potentially dangerous.
For measurements reaching .03 to .5 mW/m², there have already been reports from people who have experienced sleep disturbances, headaches, behavioral problems, and difficulty concentrating.
What Is a Normal EMF Reading?
Now that we understand what measurements are considered dangerous, what exactly does normal EMF refer to?
Being around EMF-emitting devices is just a part of life for most of us. Eliminating them entirely is virtually impossible.
However, it is still necessary to recognize these sources so that you can maintain a safe distance from them.
Some scientists recommend that safe EMF exposure levels range from 0.5 mG to 2.5 mG.
At this rate, your risk for electromagnetic-related disease and illness is low, although effects may vary depending on how electro-sensitive you are.
EMF Levels Chart
Below is a snapshot of recommended safe levels of EMF exposure as advised by different institutions:
FCC: 61.4 (V/m) and 1000 µW/cm²
BioInitiative Report as of 2012: 0.034 (V/m) and 0.0003 µW/cm²
Building Biology Institute for Sleeping Areas: 0.061 (V/m) and 0.001 µW/cm²
Austrian Medical Association: 0.020 or less (V/m) and 0.0001 or less µW/cm²
Notice the substantial discrepancy between the FCC’s safety standards and that of EMF advocacy groups (which is based on updated research).
Surprising “Danger Zones” in the Average Household
Look around your home, do you see anything that threatens your health?
At the first look, maybe not.
What can your old coffee maker or innocent smart TV do to you anyway?
Well, as you’ve probably guessed by now, they can actually make quite the impact over time…and not in a good way.
It may be surprising, but the appliances and electronics that you use in your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom are possibly emitting harmful EMFs.
Keep in mind that the recommended safety level is from .5 mG and the maximum would be 2.5 mG, but 1.0 or less is better.
Ok, so let’s look at your living room, for example:
Most households have computers, cordless phones, television sets, and vacuum cleaners that they use in the living room on a daily or weekly basis.
Unfortunately, these devices and appliances can make your living area a danger zone.
- Computers, for instance, can expose you to 4-20 mG.
- TVs can emit around 5-100 mG.
- Vacuum cleaners can give off 230-1300 mG.
Now, how about your bedroom and bathroom?
You might have a lamp with a fluorescent light by your bed and a hairdryer near your sink. Of course, a washing machine is essential, too, though it may be located elsewhere.
But check this out:
- Lamps can emit anywhere from 400 to 4,000 mG of radiation.
- Hair dryers can range from 60 mG all the way up to 20,000 mG.
- Meanwhile, washers can emit a range of 8 mG to 200 mG.
If that’s not enough to peak your interest, wait until you look at your kitchen:
- Microwaves can expose you to 100 mG to 500 mG of radiation.
- Blenders measure high too, giving off 50 mG to 220 mG.
- Coffee makers are not so bad compared to them, but they still give off 6 mG to 29 mG.
As you can see, we need to be vigilant about the level of radiation in our homes as high EMF readings can be found where you least expect it.
However, let me say this:
Don’t take this information and become paranoid…
Use this information to take action.
Complete elimination is not your goal – reduction is.
If you know what a high EMF reading is, which you do if you just read this article, then you can take the necessary steps to get any reading in your home into the safety zone.
Use distance to your advantage.
Eliminate unnecessary tech.
Decrease the amount of time you use “danger” devices.
And last but not least, implement shielding products in areas where elimination and distance aren’t feasible.
Do those 4 things, and you’ll be well on your way to lowering those high EMF levels.
If you have the time, check out this video to learn more about measuring EMF in your home and the different meter options you have:
Side Note: I just want to quickly address the times we’re living in. Many people are feeling hopeless, depressed, confused, isolated…just overwhelmed. Can you relate? If you need a dose of hope right now, please click here to read my personal note to you.
Certified EMF Expert, Chief Editor & Researcher at Beat EMF. I’m in charge of testing all the products and sorting through the duds to deliver effective EMF solutions for your family. Learn more about me here.
27 thoughts on “What Is a High EMF Reading?”
Awesome ….Thank you for educating us .
I am concerned about the home I currently live in. We have a large transformer very close to the house. I downloaded an EMF app and I am getting 50/55 reading.
Is this considered high? What can I do to minimize negative health effects?
EMF apps do not work. You’ll need a real meter to analyze your exposure risk. I recommend the Trifield TF2.
For further help, please book a consult here.
I recently purchased a Infared Full Spectrum sauna. Should I be worried about over exposure to EMF? It’s seats two.
In most cases, I’d say the benefits outweigh the risk when it comes to saunas. For peace of mind, I’d definitely get a meter to know for sure what kind of levels you’re dealing with. If they’re too high, and you just recently bought it, it may still be within the return timeframe? They make low-EMF models, which is what I have.
Hi! I had my home emf levels checked. Do I need to check the v/m and mW/m² levels too?
v/m is the measurement for electric fields and mW/m² for radio frequency. So did you only have magnetic fields measured (mG)? If only magnetic fields, then yes, you want to test the others too.
What’s the best way to measure the V/m? I have the Meterk and it only measures Mg. So I’m not quite understanding the conversions of meter is as to what is safe. My Redding’s are very high with the mg measurement. Even light switches are 13.0 mg. So what’s the best way to measure and understand what is safe and what needs reduction. And is there a way to “shield” the microwave that is putting off 75 mg and higher when not in use. Just standing by it turned off that’s the reading. It’s very confusing to have so many units of measure to know. Thank you.
I have a printable guide that may be helpful. You can check it out here.
Regarding your microwave, I recommend unplugging when not in use. And when using, everyone should stay out of the kitchen while it’s running.
We recently purchased some land and just found out a cell tower is 200 feet away. We just purchased a Trifield TF2 reader and want to know how and what we should measure. Which readings should we take and what readings would be concerning?
Who do we report a high EMF reading to in order to create an EMF safe zone
Your utility company, phone, or internet company unfortunately will not care. The FCC and other organizations have set the so-called “safety” limit so high that a house filled with smart wireless tech that sits just meters away from a cell phone tower would still be considered “safe.”
So there’s on reporting to do, just do your own shielding. Take a look around my website for tips and tutorials on that.
Do you happen to have a chart/table that would give the child developmental therapy office for my daughter perspective on the dangers of their location – they are located by a small power substation and high tension power lines? The trifield meter showed 220 V/m…..I’m interested in finding out, too, just how unhealthy these levels are. Thank you very much for any help you may be able to provide.
Hi Shannon – I know this document probably seems like information overload, but a comprehensive source, and it has a section on power lines and substations – https://monographs.iarc.who.int/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/mono80-1.pdf
Hope that helps!
Hi there! August of 2020 we built a home on land near power lines. I should have known better, and now after unexplained health issues since then, I decided to research EMF. I bought a detector and my home had a v/m reading at all times. As I walk inside, towards the back of my home, I get 300+ v/m reading. Out of curiosity, I went outside in my backyard towards the area of the power lines. I didn’t even leave my backyard and got readings up to 1000+v/m. I’m ready to pack up and move. Help!
I moved into a new apartment (attached to a farmhouse, country NH) and my magnetic readings are reasonably high in the entire unit. Very steady no matter where I read in every room, ranging from 1.9mG in the kitchen to around 3mG in my bedroom and this is without any electronics. Also, I took readings outside of the house across the street and it’s still around 2mG even outside. What could this be? Electical? There is no cell service here either. Thanks!!
Do you have high-transmission power lines nearby?
Yes ,reading 12.3 under power line 2.9 100ft. Away from them. The coffee maker that makes one cup coffee about 188 6 in away from it that’s what it turned off if you unplug it goes to about 1.1 which is most of my house except in the basement is 0
Hi, I have been under constant reading every where at 500 Mg and higher.
I use apps on the phones and every where I go all 3 phones state 500 Mg and higher.
That’s virtually impossible (or you’re simply misreading). But phone apps are not reliable ways to measure (because of their EMF).
Hi my house is right behind the high extension electric wires like my back yard is 40 feet away from the pole There are no appliances/lights in the home as it is still under construction
I have a emf meter and tested the magnetic field
Reading outside the home (front side)
58 v/m and 1.5 mg or .2 ur
13-20v/m and 1.5.-1.7 mg or .21ut -.25 it
Back side of home towards th electric pole
40-700v/m(at the fence of my backward) 1.5mg -10 mg or .2-.8 ut
What reading are concerning here and what should I do to lower these readings inside my room or in my patio
Thank you for your article Jordan. We’re considering getting an infrared sauna where the electrical reading is 160 V/m (even though it is considered a low EMF sauna). Am trying to weigh the pros of heavy metal detox benefits versus the harm of the 160 V/m. Thank you.
I personally use a low EMF sauna. I feel its pros outweigh the cons.
Hi, I stay behind a condo substation. I use emf reader highest is 50nT-60nT. Should I be worry? My son room is at level 2 just next to the substation, the reading from his room closest to the window is 50nT.
That translates to 0.5 mG, which is high but not astronomical. Ideally, you want to see 0.1 mG or less where a person sleeps. Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do to shield magnetic fields.