As temperatures the temperature begins to drop in the fall, we lose more than just the leaves from the trees. Our homes, facing colder temperatures, will also lose the amount of water vapor in the air, often referred to as the humidity. While humidity can cause summertime to feel less than bearable, having an optimal humidity range in your home not only creates a more comfortable environment for you and your family but can also have health benefits, in addition to protecting your home or office from damage.
3 Reasons to Increase Your Home Humidity
1) Reduce Electrostatic Shock
Does moving your blanket look like you set off a set of firecrackers in your bedroom during the wintertime? You can thank the lower humidity levels in your home for that. Static electricity increases in dry air as electrons collect in pockets. This build-up of free electrons is compounded by the fact that warming up cold air as we do with our heating units in the fall and winter doesn’t add moisture to the atmosphere. It makes the air even drier and ensures a swift crackle of lightning every time you pet your cat or touch a doorknob. When you introduce moisture back into your air by raising your home humidity, you give bunched-up electrons a place to go and remove some of the “shock factors” from low humidity.
2) Prevent Damage to Your Home
Low humidity caused by colder temperatures can also severely damage your home’s interior in several ways. Most of us are aware that changing temperatures cause our homes to expand in the summer and contract in the winter. This constant flux can put a massive strain on your furniture as well as the building material of your home. For example, low humidity in your home, caused by lower temperatures, can cause wooden floorboards to bend and gaps to form between the planks. Contracting wood in furniture and musical instruments can cause cracks or joints to fail. Lower humidity can also cause drywall and wallpaper to separate or cause cracks to form in your home’s walls. Have artwork, books, or other collections in your home? If your humidity is too low, it can cause paper to become brittle, discolor, or even begin cracking.
3) Maintain Your Health
With cold weather approaching, many of us will run out and get flu shots and break out the hand sanitizer to avoid the usual onslaught of illness such as colds that come along with cooler temperatures. Controlling the humidity levels in your home during the fall and winter can also help keep you and your family healthy. With dryer environments due to the lack of water vapor in the air, our membranes are more likely to become dried out. This drying out of the sinuses is sometimes coupled with a cracking of sinus membranes, which offers viruses a direct path to enter the body. Dry air is also known to aggravate respiratory issues, as well as cause feelings of nasal congestion due to “nasal cooling.” When you increase your home humidity during fall and winter to the correct comfort range, your eyes and skin will both thank you too. Low humidity can cause your eyes to dry out, depriving them of their protective tear film. The lower humidity can also cause your skin to become dry, scaly, or itchy during the colder months due to the lack of moisture in your skin.
Check Humidity Levels with Clout
Keeping an eye on your home humidity is important in all seasons but keeping it at the right level during fall and winter will keep you healthy, save your property from damage, and eliminate annoying electrostatic build-up in your home. A Clout HVAC technician can help you assess the humidity in your home, suggest the proper solutions, and even install a whole-home humidifier. When your home’s humidity levels are maintained at optimal setting, you’ll not only feel more comfortable, but you’ll also be able to keep your thermostat at a more energy-efficient setting.