Controlling your home’s humidity level can greatly influence the overall comfort you experience and it can also help you reduce maintenance and save on your energy expenses.
70 percent humidity is considered high and your home is going to be most comfortable when you maintain the humidity levels at around 30 to 50 percent.
You need humidity for your health and comfort but too little or too much can produce a lot of difficulties and struggles on the part of homeowners.
Humidity: What Is It, Anyway?
The relative humidity is the term used most of the time when defining the amount of water vapor present in the air.
Relative humidity refers to the percentage of the water vapor in air at a particular temperature as compared to the water vapor amount that the air can capably hold at that specific temperature.
Warm air tends to hold higher amounts of water vapor compared to cold air.
Once air at a particular temperature contains the highest water vapor amount it can carry at that temperature, the relative humidity is 100%.
If it just contains half the amount it can hold at that temperature, its relative humidity is 50%.
Concerns and Issues of High Humidity
Once the temperatures outdoors get warmer, you will experience higher humidity inside your home.
Structural damage and rot can also happen as a result of long periods of high humidity inside your house.
There are also places where this can draw in pests. Bugs always search for water, and any amount of condensation can provide bugs with their required water.
High humidity can also prove to be very dangerous once it combines with high temperatures.
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This is because it can disrupt the ability of the human body to cool itself, and this can cause heatstroke.
People who have asthma or heart issues are recommended to be very careful when such conditions occur.
Drier air can provide comfort at increased temperatures so homeowners can turn up the setting of their central air conditioning systems, therefore lowering their energy use.
Higher humidity can also trigger some allergic reactions, lead to dust mite concerns, and contribute to constant allergies.
Mold can also produce easier when there is high humidity and they can pretty much appear anywhere and damage everything they grow on.
Dust mites also thrive in high humidity.
Found in almost every house, these small pests are also a bothering nuisance for those who have asthma and allergies.
Concerns and Issues of Low Humidity
Once outdoor temperature falls, your furnace is going to work harder and run more.
During conditions of extreme cold, the humidity level of your home can drop to as much as 10%. By comparison, the relative humidity in the Sahara Desert is 25%.
If you consider how people feel most comfortable if the relative humidity is around 40%, you will understand how dry air indoors can take its toll on you and your family.
Low levels of humidity can cause static electricity, scratchy noses and throats, dry lips, hair, and skin, and chapping and itching.
Mucous membranes in the throat and nose dry out, which can worsen your discomfort and make you more prone to respiratory illness and coldness.
When the levels of humidity are low, the moisture in your body evaporates really fast that you will feel chilled even when you set your thermostat higher.
Your home is going to suffer as well. Low humidity can wreak havoc on furniture and woodwork.
You will notice hard floor warping and separation, shrinkage, wallpaper peels at their edges, the piano suddenly went out of tune, molding gaps appear, and drawers loosen.
Read also: Effects Of Low Humidity On The Body
How to Solve Humidity Problems
When you suspect that your home’s air is too moist or too dry, the very first thing you have to do is verify the facts.
You can check online and use an indoor humidity meter to help you identify what is happening with your home’s water vapor.
You can also invest in an inexpensive, easy to use, a small instrument known as a hygrometer, or also called relative humidity indicatory or humidity sensor.
This can help measure your house’s humidity level and confirm if it is too little or too much. You can also ask the help of professionals who can assess, test, and remediate any issues you might have with the quality of your indoor air.
There are many tools available at your disposal that can fix the issue for you to enjoy living in your home comfortably and safely.
When you have high humidity:
- Install a quality dehumidifier directly to your cooling and heating system or you can buy individual units for specific areas or rooms in your house.
- Check to see if your dehumidifier is working properly.
- Stop using or turn down your humidifier.
- Vent places that produce moist air such as the bathroom or shower.
- Use bathroom and range exhaust fans while bathing and cooking.
- Cover your pans when cooking.
- Use cooler water when taking showers and make them short.
- Install a fresh air intake duct.
- Decrease the number of your houseplants.
- Vent your clothes drier outside.
- Add carpet as this can help trap moisture.
- See to it that you have the right size of AC.
When you have low humidity:
- Install your humidifier directly to your cooling and heating system or by individual units for area or rooms in your house.
- Remove the lids from the pans when cooking or boiling.
- Keep your houseplants.
- Moisture from the bathroom or shower.
Ensuring the right level of humidity can do wonders not just in your comfort but also for your overall health.
Keep your humidity level at around 30 to 50 percent and don’t go beyond 70% or you risk suffering from the consequences of high humidity.
In the same way, don’t go too low or you can also experience some unwanted issues.