How To Deal With Too-Dry And Too-Moist Winter Air In Your Home
When temperatures outside decrease, you usually turn up the heat in your home to stay warm. Both forced air heating from sites like http://stucksheatingcooling.com, and wood burning stove heat can warm your house and dry out the air at the same time. On the other extreme, tightly sealed homes in the winter can retain moisture and lead to an overly-wet environment. Neither situation is ideal, but you can follow these recommendations to regulate the humidity level in your home and still enjoy your heated home.
Dealing with Heated Dry Air
Cold air cannot hold much moisture. When outside winter air is pulled into your home’s heating ventilation and heated, the air warms up and still contains the same small amount of moisture. This causes the air inside your home to be dry.
The air inside your home is most comfortable, and best for your sinuses, at 40 to 50 percent humidity. Anything below this range will cause your skin to become dry and itchy, and your nasal passages to crack, bleed and feel stuffed up. Dry nasal passages can increase your chance of getting a nasal infection. Dry air also increases annoying static in your hair and clothes.
If you have ever spent an evening in a warm home heated by a wood burning stove, your nose may have become stuffed up. This happens when the membranes inside your nose are dried out, causing nasal allergies. Lower humidity air in your home will also make the air feel more cool to your skin, causing you to turn the heat up even more.
Adding moisture to the air is easy when you know what to do. You can increase the humidity of your home’s air for it to be within this range of 40 to 50 percent to get the most comfortable and warm climate indoors.
One way to put moisture in the air is to place a humidifier in the main living area of your home and run it day and night.
If you don’t have a humidifier, you can heat pot of water on the stove. The stove heat will allow the water to evaporate and enter the air throughout your home. Once you begin to see condensation forming on your home’s windows, you know you have increased your indoor humidity and made the air more comfortable.
A third option to increase your home’s indoor humidity is to leave bathroom fans off and bathroom windows shut after bathing and showering. The hot water creates steam that gets into your home’s air, which can help increase the humidity in your entire house.
Dealing with a High Moisture Level
During the winter when you turn on the heat in your home, you want the heat to stay inside your home. Unfortunately, if your home is too tightly sealed, humidity can increase too much. You can check the humidity levels in your home with a hygrometer or just by how the environment feels to you.
When the moisture levels in your home are above 60 percent, the air will start to feel stuffy and it will create an unhealthy environment in your home. Too much moisture in the air can allow mold and mildew to grow, and heavy condensation to form and freeze on your windows, causing damage. This moist environment can also allow dust mites to thrive. Your home might also become smelly, and you can have an increase in allergy problems from the mold and mildew growing.
To rid your home of excess humidity, make sure to turn on your ventilation fans in the bathrooms after showering. Or, you can also crack open the bathroom window for an hour to let some moisture escape.
A dehumidifier can help in your home when these options don’t remove enough humidity from your home’s air. When you consider each person in your home exhales 300 to 500 milliliters of water droplets from breathing, that can add up to a lot of extra humidity during the day.
It is important for your comfort, your health, and your home’s interior quality to keep the humidity in check while you heat your home with a wood burning stove or forced air. This is also important when your home is well sealed and insulated.