Heating and cooling tend to get all the attention when we think about indoor air quality. But humidity levels are critical, and achieving the ideal range of 30-50% isn’t always easy.
Too Much Moisture: Dehumidify
Too much humidity promotes the growth of mold, pathogens and allergens. It also causes damage to your home’s structure and walls.
In general, summer is the season of high humidity. If you have an air conditioning unit, this already provides dehumidification as part of its process. But if you have high humidity even when it’s not hot, or if you don’t want an air conditioner but still need dehumidification you can use a dehumidifier.
There are two main types of dehumidifier: refrigerant and desiccant. Refrigerant dehumidifiers use the same technology that air conditioners use, while desiccant dehumidifiers absorb moisture from the air. Since refrigerant dehumidifiers are typically used for homes, you will probably need this type.
The first thing you need to do is figure out the best place for your dehumidifier. You can get a small unit to take care of a problem area like your basement or kitchen. If your humidity issues are more widespread, then a whole-house dehumidifier is your best bet.
Too Dry: Humidify
Air that is too dry can leave you susceptible to colds and the flu by drying out your nasal passage, along with many other symptoms like itchy throat, dry eyes, cracked lips, irritated skin and headaches. It also contributes to static which can damage sensitive electronic equipment, can cause damage to wood floors and furniture, and dry out houseplants.
Dry air is often associated with colder weather, but some climates are dry year-round. Regardless of where you are, dry indoor air is a problem that can be solved with a humidifier.
You have two main options for a humidifier system: whole house or individual room. The option that takes care of your entire home is installed close to your furnace and injects steam into your supply duct. However, depending on your home, this may cause too much moisture in certain areas.
If you want more individual control, a small humidifier that emits moisture into a room will allow your moisture-prone areas to stay dry while creating the correct humidity levels elsewhere. This is a great option for bedrooms that get too dry.
Click HERE for more information about humidifiers, including a further breakdown of the options available, as well as ways you can add moisture to your home without spending any money!