How Do Humidifiers Improve Your Health?

Your humidity level can play a role in a variety of home concerns from your family’s daily comfort to your monthly energy bills. While you may already know the dangers of too high of a moisture level, it’s important to note that not enough airborne moisture can wreak just as much havoc.

Fortunately, whole-home humidifiers can effortlessly moderate your humidity and assist in protecting your indoor air quality. Here’s how investing in a humidifier can save you money this winter season.

How Humidifiers Work: Whole-house humidifiers are popular add-ons to residential HVAC systems. They’re especially helpful during the colder months when the air is drier and it’s harder to keep your humidity level in a safe range. The air outside your home is likely already dry and using your heating system will only further remove moisture. The three major types of humidifiers include steam, power, and bypass systems. A steam humidifier is the most unique option as it boils water to produce steam that’s then pushed into your ductwork.

A bypass humidifier will either be installed in the return air area or near the supply plenum. When you need humidity, water will collect in a tray inside the humidifier. The furnace’s warm air will pass over this water, evaporating it and moving it into your home. This system relies on your existing blower fan for distribution. A power humidifier is most similar to a bypass system but it has its own fan. While these systems can’t operate entirely without your furnace, the additional fan provides more effective airflow.

Humidifiers are just like other home comfort equipment in that they require yearly maintenance. Fortunately, they’re easy to install and don’t require much electricity or water every month. Humidifying systems are controlled by humidistats, which are like traditional thermostats but only monitor your humidity. You also won’t have to use your humidifier year-round. If your home only struggles with dry air during the winter, you can limit your usage during the summer to save energy.

Whole-Home Humidifier Benefits: Opting for a whole-house humidifier is more reliable than depending on a portable unit. Systems that connect directly to your HVAC system can control the humidity of every room in your home. You won’t have to worry about certain areas being too dry or uncomfortable. These are a few other great benefits you can expect when you install a home humidifier.

Provides Automatic Humidity Control: One of the best features of a humidifier is its automatic humidity control. After you set your humidistat, you can count on your system to immediately begin pumping more moisture into the air. Once your humidity reaches your desired setting, the system will turn off. The ideal home humidity level is between 30% to 60% for most households. When your airborne moisture sinks below 30%, the air in your home is considered too dry.

Improves Skin Hydration: A common side effect of dry air is skin irritation. Your loved ones may develop dry patches of red or itchy skin that only worsens over the winter season. Dry living environments will slowly wear down your skin moisture barrier and aggravate your existing conditions. For example, those with psoriasis or eczema are likely to find their symptoms more uncomfortable during the cold months. A humidifier helps to keep you hydrated and healthy, eliminating the risk of unpleasant health effects.

Increases Respiratory Comfort: Dry air is typically more abrasive than moist air. This means that it tends to irritate your eyes, mucus membranes, throat, and nasal passages. Even if you don’t have health concerns like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, too-dry air will increase your chances of struggling with a painful cough, shortness of breath, or wheezing. A humidifier ensures the humidity level in your home never drops to an unsafe level.

Eases Illness Symptoms: Wintertime is the season for the common cold and flu. Grappling with these illnesses in a dry environment can dramatically worsen your symptoms. A low humidity level will dry out the membranes in your nose and throat, causing prolonged irritation and pain. Too dry of air can even give you nosebleeds. More airborne moisture will loosen your mucus and unblock your airways. You’ll feel less sinus pressure and will have an easier time getting over your cold.

Protects Belongings: Just as your health won’t do well in an excessively dry environment, neither will your home. Not enough moisture can allow your wallpaper to come loose and fall away. Your wooden floors, instruments, and furniture may shrink, crack, or buckle. You’ll likely find your floorboards are louder than normal and your dry goods like breads and cereals are going stale faster. A safe humidity level is key to preserving your home’s safety and convenience.

Helps Houseplants: Experienced plant owners already know that some plants have incredibly specific care needs. Unfortunately, without enough humidity, even your most hardy of plants could begin to wilt. Plants pull a large amount of their vital moisture from the air. When a room is too dry, this process is reversed, meaning the houseplant will lose its water faster. Overwatering to make up for this lost moisture may drown the roots or create an opportunity for fungal growth.

Adds Property Value: Whole-home humidifiers are powerful home comfort systems that can increase your home’s value. Potential buyers will rest easy knowing the home’s comfort is under complete control. The average humidifier lifespan is between 10 to 20 years. Unlike portable units, these whole-home systems connect directly to your water supply. Other than scheduling yearly maintenance and making adjustments to your humidistat, you’ll never have to add water directly.

Potential Humidifier Cons: Whole-home humidifiers have a few potential disadvantages like installation requirements and a high initial cost. While it’s easy to buy and set up a portable system by yourself, whole-home alternatives require professional installation. These systems are also more expensive than contained units. You’ll have to pay for the humidifier itself as well as any labor costs. Any necessary changes to your HVAC system can also increase your fees.

Additionally, it’s important not to neglect your humidifier’s care requirements. Without regular tune-ups, you’re at a higher risk of dealing with mold or mildew outbreaks. Maintenance is a must to guarantee there are no water leaks within the system.

Top Heating and Cooling Provider: Whether you need a repair or an HVAC system replacement, you don’t have to look further than Ready & Able Plumbing, Heating & Air in Harrisburg, PA. We’ve been in the industry for more than 20 years and have made it our goal to earn your 100% satisfaction. We’re a leading indoor comfort service provider with more than 3,000 great reviews.

Our AC, furnace, boiler, and heat pump installations come with exceptional 10-year part and labor warranties. We offer HVAC maintenance plans, duct cleanings, and indoor air quality systems. Our skilled specialists can also clean your drains or help with your kitchen/bathroom remodeling. Call our team now to learn more.

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