So, is 50 percent humidity considered high? 50 percent humidity level is not considered high at all. Your home will feel most comfortable when the levels of humidity are around 30% to 50%.
You need humidity for your overall health and comfort but too little or too much can cause numerous problems for homeowners.
But, first, let me talk about what humidity is and what issues you will experience if humidity is too low or too high. After this, you will learn how you can better control your home’s humidity levels.
Humidity – What is It?
Relative humidity is the term commonly used for defining the water vapor amount present in the air.
Relative humidity refers to the water vapor percentage in the air at a particular temperature as compared to the water vapor amount the air can hold at that specific temperature.
Warm air tends to hold more water vapor compared to cold air. Once air at a particular temperature contains all the amount of water vapor it can hold at the given temperature, it will have a 100% relative humidity.
If it contains just half the water vapor amount it can hold at the temperature, it will have a 50% relative humidity.
Problems and Risks of Low Humidity
Once the outdoor temperature falls, your furnace will also run more. During extremely cold weather, the humidity level in your home can drop to as low as 10%.
For comparison purposes, the relative humidity in the Sahara Desert is 25%.
If you consider that, people in general, are more comfortable at around 40% relative humidity, you will realize how dry indoor air can affect you and your whole family.
Low humidity can cause static electricity, scratchy noses and throats, dry hair, lips, and skin, and chapping and itching.
Mucous membranes in throat and nose dry out that can increase your discomfort and make you more susceptible to respiratory illness and colds.
With low levels of humidity, moisture in the body can evaporate fast that you will feel chilled despite higher settings in the thermostat.
Your house will suffer as well. Low humidity can easily wreak havoc on furniture and woodwork.
You will also notice separation and warping of your hardwood floor, shrinkage, peeling of wallpaper at the ends, going out of tune of the piano, loosening drawers, and appearance of molding gaps.
Problems and Risks of High Humidity
Once the outdoor temperatures get warm, you will experience high levels of humidity in your house.
Excessive humidity can lead to wet stains on ceilings and walls, condensation on windows, musty odor, moldy bathrooms, and clammy feel to indoor air.
Structural damage and rot can also happen when your home has a high humidity level for extended periods.
There are also instances when this can draw pests inside your house. Bugs always search for water and the condensation will provide the bugs with the water they need.
Higher levels of humidity can be very risky once combined with higher temperatures since this will disrupt the ability of the body to cool itself.
This can then lead to heat stroke. A person with asthma or heart problem is advised to be very careful during these conditions.
Drier air can provide comfort at higher levels of temperature so homeowners can just raise the setting of the central air conditioner to reduce their energy usage.
Higher levels of humidity can also trigger some allergic reactions, dust mite concerns, and contribute to current allergies.
Higher humidity can also make it easier and faster for molds to grow and reproduce. These can appear pretty much anywhere and damage anything they grow on. Mold spores can pose a threat to asthma and allergy sufferers.
Dust mites also thrive during high humidity. Found in almost all homes, these small pests can also be a serious nuisance for people with asthma and allergies.
How to Address Humidity Concerns
If you suspect that your home’s air is too moist or too dry, the very first thing you have to do is to verify facts.
The indoor humidity meter can be used to help you know what happens with the water vapor in your home.
You can also invest in a tiny, easy to use, and an affordable instrument known as a hygrometer.
There are instances when this is also called a relative humidity indicator or humidity sensor. It can measure the level of humidity in your home and confirm this when you have too little or too much.
You can hire a professional to test, assess, and remediate the indoor air quality concerns you have.
There are a lot of tools available at your disposal for fixing the issue for you to enjoy your home comfortably and safely.
When the humidity in your home is too low, try to do the following:
- Have a humidifier installed directly to your cooling and heating system or get individual units for your home.
- Control moisture from bathroom or shower
- Have some houseplants
- Cook or boil with the lids off pans
If the levels of humidity level are too high, the following can be done:
- Have a dehumidifier installed directly to your cooling and heating system or get individual units for areas or rooms in your house.
- Stop or lessen the use of your humidifier
- Use a dehumidifier in your bathroom.
- Vent areas that can create moist such as the bathroom or shower
- Cover pans while cooking
- Install a fresh air intake duct
- Reduce shower times and use cooler water
- Decrease the number of plants in your house
- Vent the clothes drier outside
- Add a carpet
- Ensure that your air conditioning is sized properly.
When your unit runs, this may run a bit longer yet it will pull out moisture and it will have a much easier time cooling so it will not cost you more.