During the winter months, it is more important than ever to make sure that the humidity in your home is at the right level. Your home can become much dryer than it is during the warmer months. Experts agree that proper humidity for your home should be between 30 and 50 percent, but how is that measured and what can you do to make sure your home stays safe and comfortable?
What is Humidity?
The first step to understanding why humidity is important is to understand what humidity is. At the most basic level, humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air. Water vapor is water but in a gaseous form. Humidity is measured in grams of water vapor per cubic meter of air. Humidity can also affect how you feel temperature in your home.
When the humidity in your home is too high, it can make you feel muggy, sweaty, or uncomfortable. A sure sign that it is too humid inside is condensation on the windows or walls. Higher humidity can also cost you more money, which nobody likes. Water vapor is not a great conductor of heat, meaning it cools down very quickly. Therefore, the more humid it is in your home, the more you are going to have to run your furnace to make up for it.
Money and comfort are not the only things high humidity effects. The increased moisture can cause your home to become breeding ground for mold, fungi, and other illnesses. The increase in mildew can even lead to worsened allergies for some people.
On the other hand, too little humidity in your home can also cause problems. Dry air is something we are acquainted with in winter. Because cold air holds less moisture than warm air, it can happen without really trying as the cold tends to permeate homes readily in winter, especially here in Minnesota. Luckily, low humidity doesn’t cause as many problems as too high of humidity, but it still isn’t fun. With low humidity, colds and flus tend to be spread more easily. This is because water molecules in the air cause bacteria and viruses to become heavy and sink down away from our mouth and nose. Without the extra weight, the bacteria and viruses can travel easier from person to person and infect others.
Another less sickly trait of low humidity is the occurrence of static electricity. More of an annoyance than harmful, you’ll find yourself being zapped as you move from one comfy blanket to the next. Nosebleeds also become a more common problem as you nose drys out. It can be especially bad for those of us with allergies or if you are already suffering from the flu.
To get the humidity in your home just right, trust the professionals. Give Twin City Heating, Air and Electric a call, and we can check your air with and Air Quality Check. Not only with it detect humidity but anything else in the air that may be giving you issues.