How often do you pay attention to your indoor humidity levels? If you have a newer thermostat, you might take a look every so often when you pass by, but if your thermostat doesn’t display humidity, do you even know what your levels are?
If not, and your indoor humidity is too high, all of that airborne moisture could be damaging your home and your family’s health. Read on to learn how excessive humidity can be harmful and what you can do about it.
What’s an Appropriate Indoor Humidity Level?
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), relative indoor humidity levels should not exceed 60%. However, an ideal range falls between 30%-50%.
Potential Hazards of Excessive Indoor Humidity
When your indoor humidity is too high, that moisture can easily encourage mold growth, especially in areas that don’t get cleaned often or don’t have good air circulation. Fungi and dust mite populations also thrive in high-humidity environments. All of these things can release toxic contaminants that can decrease your indoor air quality and damage your health.
Aside from impacting your health, mold, mildew, and fungi can cause the wood components of your home to rot, resulting in costly damage. Even if no rot develops, mold presents a health hazard and requires thorough cleaning and remediation, which can also be quite expensive depending on the severity of the problem.
When indoor moisture levels are too high, your body may also have trouble regulating its internal temperature via evaporation (aka sweating). While that’s not harmful per se, it can certainly be uncomfortable to deal with.
Consequences of Not Having High Enough Indoor Humidity
Just as excessive indoor humidity can cause problems, not having enough airborne moisture can, too. Indoor air that’s too dry can dehydrate the wood components of your home over time, which may result in shrunken and cracked door frames and damaged molding. Wood floors may also creak and groan under weight, and if they become severely dehydrated, they may be prone to cracking.
Indoor air that’s too dry can also affect your health in a number of ways. Chapped lips and itchy skin may develop, as can sore throats, wheezing, coughing, and respiratory issues. Some people may even find it difficult to breathe when indoor humidity levels are below 30%.
How to Control Humidity Levels in Your Home
To keep your indoor humidity within the appropriate range, you’ll first need to find out where it currently measures. If your thermostat doesn’t display humidity, you can pick up a hygrometer at your local big box store and place it in your main living area to get a reading.
If your humidity is too high, use a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture from the air. Opening windows periodically, using fans, and scheduling a/c and furnace cleaning can also help. If your humidity is too low, you can implement portable humidifiers which will add moisture to the air inside your home.
Dealing With High Indoor Humidity? Dust Doctors Can Help
If your relative indoor humidity is too high and you need help bringing it down, get in touch with our team at Dust Doctors. We offer full-service furnace cleaning and a/c cleaning that can help control indoor humidity. We also provide a variety of indoor air quality improvement services that’ll help you and yours stay healthy year-round.
To schedule an appointment or learn more about how we can help, call our Little Canada, MN office today at 651-319-9777 or request a free quote online, and we’ll get in touch with additional info.
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