In the southern states, the summer months often feel muggy due to excess moisture in the air. When the humidity level outdoors is high, typically homes experience higher humidity inside, too. Because too much moisture can cause issues, it’s important to know the ideal humidity level in home environments and how to keep airborne moisture in check. For all of your home’s indoor air quality solutions, contact Energy Savers today.
Why Humidity Is Important
When we think of humidity outdoors, an unpleasant environment often comes to mind. If humidity makes a hot summer day difficult to suffer outside, why would you want any humidity inside your home? The truth is, a certain amount of humidity in the air is beneficial – the key is maintaining the right level of humidity in your home.
When indoor humidity levels in home environments are not balanced, the amount of moisture within the indoor air is either too high or too low.
- High indoor humidity increases the likelihood of mold, mildew, bacteria, and fungi developing and spreading throughout the house. Excessive airborne moisture can damage structural elements of the home as well as its contents. When relative humidity levels in your home are high, allergen concentrations increase indoors, which can lead to an increase in allergy and asthma symptoms. Plus, the home will feel muggy and uncomfortable, just like outdoors.
- Low indoor humidity leads to dry air, which dries out and irritates the body’s mucus membranes and skin, causing itchiness, chapped lips, and dry skin. The body naturally feels colder, too. When airborne humidity levels are too low, it is easier for aerosols and droplets produced by coughing, sneezing, and other bodily functions to spread, which can carry viruses throughout the home and increase the likelihood of transmission. Dry air can cause serious damage to wooden elements of the home as well.
Ideal Humidity Level in Home Living Areas
Due to the issues caused by high and low humidity inside a house, it’s important to maintain the right indoor humidity level. Relative humidity refers to the amount of water vapor in the air compared to the amount the air is able to hold at the current temperature. To avoid moisture problems and those caused by lack thereof, the ideal humidity level in home spaces is between 30 to 50 percent.
How to Control Humidity Indoors
During the summer months, the outdoor environment is naturally more humid. This moisture will naturally infiltrate the home to some degree, which can throw the humidity level in home environments off balance. Typically, indoor humidity becomes too high over the summer months. To bring indoor humidity levels back into balance, some moisture needs to be removed from the indoor air.
A home that runs an air conditioner or heat pump for cooling will receive some amount of dehumidification through the cooling process, which causes airborne moisture to condense and fall out of suspension. However, this equipment alone is typically not powerful enough at removing high humidity at the level needed.
Whole home dehumidifiers are capable of providing the powerful dehumidification needed to bring indoor moisture down to the ideal humidity level in home living areas during the summer months. This equipment is installed alongside the indoor heating and cooling equipment to treat air as it circulates through the system for cooling. Air from the return ducts flows through the dehumidifier before reaching the air conditioning components. Inside, air is cooled, causing moisture to condense and fall out of suspension. The resulting water droplets collect in a reservoir and drain through a dedicated drain line.
Dehumidifiers are programmed to keep air at an ideal humidity level in homes for your health and comfort. The system will automatically operate to remove an appropriate percentage of moisture based on the settings. Depending on the day, this may be a little or a lot – whatever the current dehumidification needs are, the system will do the job. Alternatively, a whole house humidifier can be installed with an HVAC system to add humidity to the air, bringing dry air to an ideal indoor humidity level, which is often necessary during the dry, winter months.
Maintain Balanced Humidity with Energy Savers
Energy Savers helps homeowners across the Columbus, GA, and Opelika, AL, areas stay comfortable with the right equipment to achieve the ideal humidity level in home environments. To learn more about whole house dehumidifiers, how to use them, or to request an estimate for installation, please contact us today!