This article was originally published in May of 2019 but has been updated to include relevant content.
With most people spending more time indoors over the winter months, and even more so now that many people are working from home, it’s important to consider our indoor environment. From our personal health to maintaining our home and valuables, learn why monitoring our indoor humidity throughout our homes is important.
The Problems Dry Air Can Cause
We often don’t consider how the changing outdoor weather conditions can affect our indoor living spaces. Air that is too dry inside our homes can cause many issues for our family’s health, our valuables throughout our homes, and even our furniture!
Indoor air quality takes a major hit.
When the temperature drops, we naturally crank the heat in our homes. But that can exacerbate the effects of dry winter air. The heating systems in typical homes not only circulate warm air but also degrade indoor air quality by spreading around airborne pollen, germs, and dust.
You are more likely to get sick.
To make matters worse, your dried-out nasal passages have reduced ability to trap viruses and other harmful things. In other words, there are more particles floating around that can make you feel bad, and your respiratory system is less able to deal with them. So not only do dry air symptoms include chapped lips, dry air nose bleeds, cracked, itchy skin and a dry air sore throat, you’re also more likely to get colds, sinus infections, the flu and/or suffer from allergies.
It can damage your home and valuables.
For most people, a home is their biggest investment. Therefore, it’s important to know dry air in your house can damage drywall, wooden trim, and hardwood floors.3
It can also potentially damage valuables and personal possessions. Things like musical instruments, books, and artwork are at risk when subjected to extended periods of dry air in your home in winter.
Humidifiers Can Help
An obvious solution to dry air in your home is to run a humidifier. But you have to be careful about it. Too much humidity can result in equally harmful things like mold, bacteria and dust mites. There are lots of articles and resources that teach you how to use a humidifier to control humidity. Practically every recommended method will involve using a hygrometer for measuring humidity.
The EPA recommends indoor humidity levels stay between 30%–50%. If you want to remain comfortable through the winter months, proper home humidity control is crucial.
Winter Humidity in the House
Want to maintain optimal humidity levels throughout the winter? Consider upgrading your home environment with some home monitoring equipment. A precision humidity gauge to track and monitor indoor humidity, such as an AcuRite digital hygrometer, will be your best ally.
Used in conjunction with a quality, regularly-maintained and cleaned humidifier (NOTE: humidifiers can develop mold if not routinely cleaned), you can help ensure proper indoor conditions.
AcuRite's weather and environment products that track indoor humidity feature a humidity level icon, or home comfort icon, to easily convey a low, high or ideal humidity level for your health and home environment. The ideal humidity level, or home comfort, is determined through relative humidity (RH) levels.
LOW Humidity Level
Less than 30% RH Humidity level is low relative to the temperature. This makes for a dry environment.
OK Humidity Level
Between 30%-50% RH Humidity level is OK relative to the temperature. This makes for a comfortable environment.
HIGH Humidity Level
Over 50% RH Humidity level is high relative to the temperature. This makes for a humid environment.
For accurate readings, place the temperature and humidity monitor away from windows, doors, vents, humidifiers, dehumidifiers and other direct sources of heat or moisture.
Prevent Winter Dryness
This rough guideline, with the help of AcuRite humidity sensors and home comfort monitors, makes it easy to maintain ideal indoor humidity throughout the winter months. Equally important to monitoring humidity is maintaining a comfortable temperature, which is essential to running an efficient and cost-effective home. Learn how home monitoring throughout the year can even save you money on your heating and cooling bill!
December 10, 2021
Sign up to receive AcuRite Blog content to your inbox! Plus, get a $10 coupon for your first purchase, and be the first to hear about other special offers.