Moisture levels in your home can greatly impact your health, your comfort, and even your wallet. Too much humidity can lead to mold and mildew growth, but too little humidity can cause respiratory problems. Therefore, finding a happy medium for humidity levels in your home is important. Ideally, humidity levels in your home should be in the range of 30-50%. Anything above 50% is too high, and anything below 30% is too low.
How to Measure Indoor Humidity Levels
There are a few different ways to measure the humidity in your home. The most common and affordable way is to use a hygrometer. You can find hygrometers at most hardware stores for around $15. You can tell if there’s too much moisture in your home by looking for the following signs:
- Water stains or condensation on walls, windows, or pipes
- Visible mold or mildew growth
- Musty smells
- A feeling of stuffiness in the air
If you see any of these signs, your home’s humidity levels are likely too high. Conversely, if your skin feels dry and cracked, your sinuses are painfully dry, or you’re having trouble breathing, the humidity in your home is probably too low.
How to Manage High Humidity Levels
If the humidity in your home is too high, there are a few things you can do to fix the problem. The most important thing is to find and fix any sources of moisture.
The first step is to find and fix any sources of water leakage in your home. It could be a dripping faucet, a leaking pipe, or even a hole in your roof. Once you’ve fixed all the leaks, it’s important to keep an eye on potential sources of moisture and nip them in the bud. This could include wiping up spills immediately, using exhaust fans when cooking or showering, and emptying any standing water (like in pet bowls or planters) regularly.
Upgrade Your Doors and Windows
Another way to reduce the amount of moisture in your home is to upgrade your doors and windows. If your doors and windows are old, they might not seal properly, so humid air from the outside can easily seep in. By upgrading to new, energy-efficient doors and windows, you can help keep the humidity levels in your home low.
Use a Dehumidifier
One of the most effective ways to reduce the humidity in your home is to use a dehumidifier. Dehumidifiers work by pulling moisture out of the air and into a reservoir. You can then empty the reservoir when it gets full. Dehumidifiers come in all different sizes, so you can choose one that’s right for your home.
Use Indoor Plants
Did you know that certain plants can help reduce the humidity in your home? Plants like Boston ferns, lady palms, and peace lilies work by absorbing moisture from the air. Not only will these plants help reduce the humidity in your home, but they’ll also purify the air, making it healthier for you to breathe.
How to Manage Low Humidity Levels
During winter, it’s not uncommon for the air inside your home to be much drier than usual. This is because cold air holds less moisture than warm air. Low humidity may cause static electricity, cracks in furniture and wood floors, and increased respiratory problems. If the humidity in your home is too low, here’s what you can do to fix the problem.
Install a Humidifier
One of the best ways to increase the humidity in your home is to install a humidifier. Humidifiers work by releasing water vapor into the air, which then increases the moisture levels. You can choose from whole-house humidifiers or portable ones that you can move from room to room.
Be sure to clean your humidifier regularly to prevent mold and bacteria growth. If you have a forced-air heating system, you can also use it to increase the humidity in your home. Just be sure to set it on the “humidity” setting instead of “heat.”
Another way to increase the humidity in your home is to allow natural evaporation. You can achieve this by boiling water on the stove, hanging wet towels to dry, or placing water bowls around your home. Keep an eye on the water levels so they don’t evaporate completely.
It’s also important to note that natural evaporation will only work if the air in your home is warm enough. If it’s too cold, the water evaporates without increasing the humidity.
Let Us Help!
Managing humidity levels in your home can be tricky. If you need help, our team of experts at Zark Heating & Cooling is here to assist. We specialize in indoor air quality as well as heating, cooling, and ductless services in New Lenox, IL and the surrounding areas. Contact us today, and we’ll help you create a comfortable and healthy home environment for you and your family.