One thing that comes with winter other than snow and shovelling is dry indoor air. The drop in humidity levels indoors is because cold air can’t hold as much moisture as warm air.
The ideal humidity indoors during the winter should be around 45 percent. Dry indoor air can affect not only your comfort but the health of you, your family and your home.
Here are three common indoor air quality concerns that result from dry indoor air and how you can help ease discomfort.
Dry indoor air can cause itchy, uncomfortable nasal passages which can result in nosebleeds and general discomfort. Another common dry indoor air irritation is dry, flaky skin and chapped lips.
When your indoor air has low humidity, your skin will start to dry out. Extreme dry air can also increase flare-ups of your more serious skin problems, including eczema and acne.
Properly humidified air helps hydrate dry, itchy skin and lips and keep nasal passages comfortable. A whole-home humidifier helps to keep the air in your home at proper humidity levels.
When your indoor air is too dry, you will notice the static electricity might start to build up, causing blankets and clothes to stick together and electric shocks when you touch metal surfaces in the home.
Although static electricity has no extreme pain point in the home, it is an indicator of low humidity levels in the home and can be avoided with proper humidification.
Dry air can also pull moisture from your home and as this happens, hardwood floors will begin to creak more and even cause walls and door jambs to shift. This shift can create gaps between ceilings and walls and windows that are made of wood which lets in cold winter air, and ultimately increases the cost of your heating bill.
With dry indoor air, the wood furniture and floors in your home can even start to crack (with more extreme dry air).
There are indoor air quality solutions that you can implement into your home. There are two types of whole-home humidifiers available to you to help hydrate your indoor air in every room of your home, as opposed to portable humidifiers that provide humidity to one room only.
A bypass humidifier uses the airflow created by your furnace or air handler to deliver moisture throughout your home. They are often mounted in the basement or attic and are very low maintenance.
A power humidifier uses its own electric fan to hydrate the air in your home versus using your furnace to circulate the air. A power humidifier can humidify the air even when your heating and air-conditioning system is not operating.