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Do I Really Need a Whole-House Humidifier?


Something we like to emphasize about home comfort is that it depends on more than just the temperature inside the house. The quality of the household air is important as well, and a huge part of that is maintaining a balanced humidity level. This means relative humidity between 30% and 50%. Outside of that range is either too dry or too humid, and both will cause problems during the year.

The big question to answer is whether your home strays into either extreme. With winter approaching, the focus will be on low humidity problems, since the air tends to become drier in winter as water moisture freezes and the work of furnaces contributes to further lowering humidity levels. Is the situation in your house serious enough to warrant having a whole-house humidifier installed?

Sizing up the humidity in your home

Think about conditions in your house in previous winters. If you noticed any of the following, it may indicate that humidity levels are dropping too low:

  • Excess static electricity: Winter is a time when static electricity worsens, making it unnerving to reach for a doorknob and causing hair to stick to combs. This is due to drier conditions. If static electricity is a common winter nuisance, you probably have relative humidity below 30%.
  • The heater must run almost constantly: A major trouble with low humidity is that it allows heat to escape from the human body faster, which makes the air feel colder than it is. Homes with dry air will need to run their heaters extra long in order to overcome this edge to the cold.
  • Frequent illnesses: Flus and colds are common in the winter, but when the air is dry they will spread much faster. This is because low humidity causes sinus membranes to dry up, removing an important defense against illnesses.

If the signs point toward low humidity in your home, contact our indoor air quality specialists. They’ll help fix up your house with a humidifier that will provide balance, not make the house too humid.

Raleigh Heating & Air, Inc. can help improve your indoor air quality in Cary, NC. Serving Wake County and the Surrounding areas for over 20 years.

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