Humidity in the home causes more than bad hair days and itchy skin – it can actually cause structural problems, health issues and even impact your monthly energy bills. According to Chris Shea, Comfort Advisor for Wardlaw Heating & Cooling, the ideal humidity levels in the home should be around 40% in the winter and may go up to 50% in the summer.
Signs of Humidity Issues
Derek Jackson, Sales and Marketing Manager for Wardlaw Heating & Cooling, says the signs of humidity issues can be both seen and felt. “If the humidity is too high, you can feel hot and sticky. You may notice condensation on windows, and see or smell mould in basements or bathrooms,” he says. “If the humidity is too low, your throat could be sore in the morning and your skin might be excessively dry. You might also notice that the floorboards are squeaking or separating.”
Derek explains how humidity issues can have an impact on health. “Serious health problems can occur due to prolonged exposure to high or low humidity levels. Dermatitis and various skin disorders such as eczema can be exacerbated by humidity and temperature changes. With prolonged exposure to low humidity levels, the body struggles to naturally create mucus membranes in our nose and throat that fight against airborne pathogens.”
Unexpected Energy Costs
High and low humidity levels not only cause health and structural problems, but humidity issues can also increase energy costs.
“Controlling humidity can increase your heating and cooling efficiency and help you to save money. Just like outside, humidity impacts our comfort at certain temperatures. By increasing humidity to proper levels in the wintertime, you may be able to drop the temperature a couple degrees and still feel just as comfortable,” explains Chris. “The opposite goes for summertime. Air conditioners work to remove humidity. If your home is bringing in or producing more humidity than normal, it will have to work extra hard.”
Solving Humidity Problems
There are a few simple adjustments that can be made to counteract the humidity levels in the home. Derek suggests growing houseplants to add a little bit of humidity to a room. Chris suggests running an exhaust fan when showering or boiling water to help reduce humidity levels while the furnace fan can help to circulate the air throughout the home.
If the humidity issue is more pronounced, Chris suggests a few ways that the team at Wardlaw Heating & Cooling can help. “Installing an air conditioner can help to control the temperature and dehumidify the home,” he says. “We can correct ductwork if needed to increase air circulation. We also install exhaust fans in bathrooms and kitchens to remove moisture and humidifiers to add extra moisture.”
Family-owned and operated Wardlaw Heating & Cooling has been serving the community since 1981. For more information about how they can help with your home humidity as well as any other heating, cooling or ventilation issues, call their helpful at (705) 230-3148 or visit their website, on Facebook, or on Instagram.