Dry winter air and frequent handwashing (thanks, COVID) can take a toll on your skin and your health. Cold outdoor temperatures combined with low humidity levels and your home heating cause our skin to evaporate water more quickly, making it feel dry, tight, and itchy. The amount of humidity in the air varies depending on the season, weather, and where you live. Ideally, humidity in your home should be between 30% and 50%. Humidity that’s too low OR too high can cause problems with your health and home comfort. Read on for four reasons to consider adding a whole-home humidifier to your home comfort system:
Are you constantly reapplying lotion and lip balm all winter? As we mentioned above, dry winter air can be uncomfortable, causing dry skin, chapped lips, sinus issues, dry eyes, bloody noses, electric shocks, and more. Dermatologists recommend adding a humidifier to improve skin’s appearance as well as treat conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Dry air can also contribute to or exacerbate more serious respiratory issues, from snoring and sleep apnea to bronchitis and sinus infections. In short, maintaining good indoor humidity levels can make you feel more comfortable from head to toe.
In addition, properly humidified air helps you feel warmer, even with the thermostat turned down a few degrees. This means you can feel more comfortable without placing a higher burden on your utility bills. Win/win!
According to an Oregon State University study, influenza and other viruses may live longer and spread more easily in dry, low-humidity indoor air. In addition, your respiratory system depends on a properly hydrated mucus membrane to stay protected and healthy. Finally, If you or someone in your home is already ill, maintaining balanced humidity can also help ease cough and congestion symptoms and other sinus issues.
Per research from the Mayo Clinic, increased humidity in the “sweet spot” may ease breathing in children and adults who have asthma or allergies. Always consult with a health professional when making health decisions for yourself and your family.
Just like our bodies, the structure of your home and furnishings can be damaged by indoor humidity that is too low or too high. Dry air can draw moisture out of porous materials like wood, including furniture, woodwork, musical instruments, and more. This can lead to warping and cracking, causing an unsightly appearance in the short term as well as leading to long-term breakage and structural issues.
Maybe you’re already enjoying the benefits of portable humidifiers in your home. Tabletop or in-room humidifiers can be a low-cost and convenient way to add a little extra humidity where you need it. However, unlike whole-home humidifiers that work with your HVAC, portable units require constant refilling and cleaning, require special filters and parts, need to be turned on and off, and can be noisy or in the way. While your humidifier will need yearly maintenance as well, your trusted JK service technician can take care of it for you during your regular HVAC precision tune-up appointment. Plus, a whole-home humidifier provides even, regulated humidity to your entire home at the same time, preventing dry or damp spots and providing better comfort throughout your home.
JK’s Home Comfort experts are always available for free, in-home, customized system assessments to help you choose the best system for your home, budget, and family. Contact us today to learn more and get help to determine if a whole-home humidifier is the right choice for you.