Now that the kids are back to school and the schedule is loaded with fall activities, it’s a good time to think about your fall and winter indoor air quality (IAQ). Des Moines can see some fairly cold and dry seasonal weather, which can have a negative impact on your home – and your family’s health. Heater/furnace use combined with dry air can cause the wood in your home warp and crack. Wood floors, window frames, walls, furniture, framed artwork and more can be ruined by low humidity.
The health of your household can also be greatly compromised by the dry seasonal air. Low humidity can severely dry out skin, irritate eyes, cause sore throats, dry out sinuses and exacerbate allergies. The dry air can also make your home appear colder than it actually is, raising your heating bill in the process. Installing a whole home humidifier can help with all of these problems and ensure a more comfortable home throughout the fall and winter.
A portable humidifier is an option if you need moisture expressly for one room. People who suffer from upper respiratory problems or infants who have breathing conditions or dry skin can benefit greatly from them. But if your household is negatively impacted by dry air every winter, you should look into installing a whole home humidifier. A whole home humidifier is installed directly into your central air system, distributing water vapor directly into the air ducts. The home owner can then control the amount of humidity through the thermostat, ensuring an even (and healthy) level throughout the year.
The benefits include:
Health: One of the reasons that people get so sick in the winter is the dry air. It can affect your sinuses, lungs and upper respiratory system, causing coughing, worsening colds and triggering allergy symptoms. Viruses also thrive in a low-humidity setting, which can increase your chances of catching a cold or flu. Adding humidity to the air can help avoid or relieve most of those problems.
Dry Skin: One of the major concerns with dry, winter air is the effect it has on skin. Dry eyes, chapped lips, nose bleeds and a host of skin problems including itchy patches and sores can result from exposure. Dry skin is irritated by clothing and the friction generated by movement, which can exacerbate those dry patches and cause extreme inflammation and infection. Returning moisture to the air will help alleviate skin problems related to dryness.
Energy Efficiency: One of the most important reasons for installing a whole-house humidifier is saving energy. When the air in your home is at the correct humidity level, it feels warmer than air that is too dry. A homeowner can keep their thermostat turned up several degrees throughout the winter and remain comfortable when the humidity is healthy (around 45%). According to the EPA, you can save up to 4% on your utility bill for every degree that you lower your thermostat.
Home Interior: Low humidity can damage the interior of your home because it will pull the moisture out of the air. All wood is hygroscopic, which means that it can gain or lose moisture based on the surrounding environment. Wood furniture, hardwood floors, wood accents and even your home’s foundation can crack, recede and warp without moisture. The wood frames of windows and doors can warp, making it difficult to use close them; sometimes causing extensive damage. A whole home humidifier can help keep the wood in your home safe.
Sleep: Your sleep can be severely compromised by the dry air. In addition to itchy skin, breathing in the dry air at night can irritate your throat and cause severe itching and coughing. Low humidity can also cause a dry respiratory system, which promotes snoring and labored breathing. Keeping your bedroom humidified will help ensure a good night’s sleep.
When you decide that you want to look into whole home humidification, give the professionals at Service Legends a call. We can schedule an appointment and explain the different types of models available – and which might be best suited to your home. Contact us today at 515-657-6634 to get started!
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