In this age of modern climate control, keeping your home the right temperature is as simple as pressing a button on your thermostat. A properly functioning heating and cooling system will keep your temperature and humidity level normal.
Occasionally, you will need a little extra help in the moisture control department, especially in certain spaces or during extreme weather. Using humidifiers and dehumidifiers strategically can help you live healthier and take better care of your home.
Know your Numbers
The key to maintaining an ideal humidity level in your home is to know the relative humidity, which is the level of water vapor in the air expressed as a percentage of the saturation point. If you are scratching your head, don’t worry, you don’t have to manually calculate this number.
Most of the time, a relative humidity level of 35 to 50 percent is optimal for your health and the material in your home that is sensitive to humidity like musical instruments, drywall, wood floors etc.
The most efficient way to measure the level of humidity in your home is to purchase a hygrometer. Usually, these run about $20 at home depot or lowes.
If you live in a temperate climate, your humidity level may swing out of range during winter or summer months. With your furnace running in the winter, it will occasionally dry out your indoor air to below 30 percent. On the flip side during summer months your air conditioning may keep it cool but your humidity level can top 60 percent. In particularly arid or humid climates, you may only need a humidifier or dehumidifier, but usually not both.
Why does all this matter?
When your home is particularly dry or humid, one of the first things that suffer is your personal health. Dry air can aggravate skin problems such as eczema, psoriasis and chapped lips, where humid air can cause mold and mildew leading to respiratory problems.
What to do?
You can purchase a humidifier or de-humidifier from your local hardware store. Depending on your personal needs and health, you may need to invest in a whole-home system that integrates with your heating and cooling (HVAC) equipment.
A well-maintained central air conditioning system should cover most moisture control issues. If your hygrometer gives you out of normal levels in specific rooms like basements or bathrooms you can purchase portable units for these rooms.
Still not sure what you need? Give us a call and we will be happy to send one of our experts out to consult with you on a solution for your humidity or dry air issues.