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Humidity 101: How To Boost Your Indoor Air Quality

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This holiday season, families will gather together to celebrate. You may host loved ones, organize an at-home holiday party, or work from home during the festive season. With all this time spent indoors, you’ll want to ensure your indoor air quality is at its best.

It can be challenging to know if your allergies are worsened by the colder season, or if you have a home humidity problem on your hands. Similarly, many folks think their homes are naturally more humid because of Florida weather. However, home humidity should always be at a comfortable level. 

In this blog, the experts at Mid-Florida Heating & Air discuss the most common signs you have a humidity problem indoors, and how to fix it—just in time for the holidays. 

What Are Signs of Low Humidity? 

Most Florida residents don’t encounter low humidity outdoors. Because of the naturally damp climate, it can be difficult to distinguish the signs of low humidity inside your home. For a comfortable and healthy environment, the average home should have anywhere from 30-50% humidity. 

If you think you may have low humidity inside your home, some signs you should look out for include:

  • Dry and itchy skin: Dry air can cause skin to be extra sensitive, flaky, and uncomfortable, especially during the winter months. 
  • Worsened allergies: Our bodies’ nasal and throat membranes are typically filled with moisture, but can become dry and irritated in low humidity air.
  • Cracked, bubbled, or damaged wood floors and furniture: Extremely dry air can remove moisture from your home’s wooden fixtures and cause them to weaken. 
  • Increased susceptibility to illness like the common cold, flu, and other respiratory issues: Since viruses last longer in dryer air, many families experience an increased frequency or worsening of illnesses in a low humidity environment. 

How Can I Increase Humidity? 

Residents can experience low humidity at any time of year, but it often becomes a problem during the colder months. Since colder air carries less moisture, your furnace turns cold air from outdoors into dry, warm air. 

If you’ve noticed any of the signs of low humidity, it may be beneficial to invest in a whole home humidifier. A whole humidifier can be attached to your furnace to add moisture back into your home. If your humidity problem isn’t widespread, you can place a humidifier in a central room, like the living room or near your heater for improved comfort.

Some other ways to increase the humidity in your home include hanging your laundry to dry and adding some houseplants. These methods can increase humidity quickly and provide relief for you and your family. 

What Are Signs of High Humidity?

Florida is famous for beautiful beaches, ample sunshine, and humidity. But, you shouldn’t experience high humidity levels inside your home. Humidity  above 50% is too high for your home and should be addressed. 

Some signs your home has high humidity include:

  • Condensation on windows: Condensation appears when cold surfaces meet warm air. Often, moist air will condense on cold, outdoor facing windows if the humidity is high. 
  • Moldy bathrooms: As furnishings and bathroom items absorb moisture, mold can begin to grow. Mold can cause various health problems like stuffy nose, difficulty breathing, and more. 
  • Foul odors: If you can’t see any mold, but can smell musty odors, mold may be growing because of excessive moisture. 
  • Home Damage: You may notice water spots on the floor and ceiling as well as compromised furniture and floors due to extra moisture. 
  • Sleeping Problems: Many people find it difficult to sleep in stifling, clammy air. 

How Can I Reduce Humidity?

If you’re experiencing high humidity, there are solutions available that can make a difference in the quality of your air. The most effective way to reduce humidity levels are dehumidifiers. There are individual dehumidifiers, but for Florida residents, we often recommend whole-house dehumidifiers. This device operates with a fan, taking in air and removing any excess moisture. Depending on the model and size of your home, you may empty water from the dehumidifier’s bucket anywhere from twice a day to every few days. 

Other ways to reduce your humidity include removing any indoor plants, adding some fans to keep air circulating, and opening windows. While it may seem counterintuitive if the weather outside is humid, air can feel much less humid when it’s not stagnant. 

Feel Comfortable All Year Long with Help from the Experts

Enjoy your time indoors with friends and family this holiday season! If you’re unsure about your indoor air quality, or want to know more about the appropriate humidity levels for your home, the experts at Mid-Florida Heating & Air can provide you with knowledgeable advice and various solutions to keep you and your family comfortable all season long. 

Your Trusted Indoor Air Quality Experts

From HVAC installations to air duct cleaning to water heaters, the team at Mid-Florida Heating & Air can tackle it all! We pride ourselves on quality work, fair prices, and 24/7 service for every job. If you think you may have a humidity problem, or want to learn more about our services, call us at 352-744-7898 or contact us online today!

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For more information about our company and HVAC services in Gainesville and throughout Central Florida, please feel free to call us!