When winter hits, it is critical to maintain a suitable amount of humidity, but not everyone knows what the optimal humidity setting or range is.
Keeping your house at a healthy humidity level is important for a variety of reasons.
It’s not only good for your health, but it’s also necessary to keep your house comfortable.
A house that is overly humid, on the other hand, might cause complications.
Luckily for you, we have looked into the most important aspects of keeping proper humidity levels at home for you in order to avoid any respiratory issues or the general discomfort of living in a humid, condensed atmosphere.
So keep on reading our article to find out everything you need to know about the optimal indoor humidity levels as well as how to best preserve them!
What Is The Best Indoors Humidity Level?
The answer may differ based on where you are living. However, we can say that, in general, indoor humidity values of 30 to 50 percent are suitable in most areas.
If you ask an expert, they will probably tell you to keep the humidity levels over 30% to avoid the negative effects of living in a dry climate, which other than the general discomfort include body reactions and a feeling of dehydration.
However, in many areas humidity levels of 60% or greater may contribute to the appearance of mold (see also ‘Is White Mold Dangerous? How To Get Rid Of White Mold‘) and to similar effects of condensation that you would get in an extremely dry climate.
Therefore, to maintain indoor air to a level that is both good for us and does not make us feel like we are suffocating, it is best to keep the humidity levels balanced according to the experts’ advice.
What Is The Best Humidity Level During Winter?
When the temperature drops, it’s time to make sure the air within is sufficiently moisturized.
Mold, mildew, and structural deterioration can all be encouraged by excessive humidity.
You can have irritated skin, develop or worsen respiratory issues, and feel uncomfortable if you don’t humidify your space.
If your home is very humid, a dehumidifier may be required to reduce moisture levels as higher levels of humidity are equally going to worsen your overall health.
Preventing your household from a dry air atmosphere entails sealing gaps and leaks around doors and windows.
Using home appliances that alter the room’s temperatures such as cooking with a stove also contributes to bigger levels of moisture in the room atmosphere.
That is why it is important for you to check that humidity levels are kept between 40% and 50%, with professionals even suggesting that humidity inside a home should remain between 30% and 60%.
However, as we already said, when humidity levels drop to or lower than 30%, the health issues that might arise are similar and as unpleasant as those that occur when the humidity is over 60%.
Humidity levels of or more than 60% are generally excessive and can also lead to house problems like seeing your walls’ paint removed, seeing them crack, or even having your floors state deteriorating.
And, of course, the main problem that occurs because of high levels of humidity will always be mold and mildew.
Health Problems Caused By Indoor Air
In the winter, having a healthy amount of humidity indoors not only saves you from paying extra for your electricity because it contributes to higher levels of indoor temperature.
Healthy humidity levels and proper moisturization is crucial if you want to avoid having to deal with health concerns.
Below you can find some health issues that are frequently associated with excessively dry or moist indoor air:
Very Low Humidity
- Lips that are cracked or chapped
- Itchy, dry eyes or skin
- Itching or soreness from a dry nose
- Irritation of the throat
- Sleep deprivation
- Having allergy-like sensations
Very High Humidity
- Allergic reactions
- Sweaty skin causes heat rashes and eczema flare-ups
- Asthma flare-ups
- Inflammation and dermatitis are symptoms
Why Is My House So Humid In Winter?
If you notice that your house is overly humid, there are steps you may do to reduce the amount of moisture in the air.
Excess humidity inside during the winter is commonly caused by improper ventilation in bathrooms after showering, boiling water regularly, and not allowing air to circulate.
Homes with histories of leaks and condensation issues are also culpable and contribute to high humidity. In the winter, high humidity levels in the interior air are unusual.
Should I Run A Humidifier In The Winter?
Indoor humidity levels that are too low can exacerbate cold and flu symptoms, as well as other illnesses and respiratory diseases.
Running a humidifier (see also ‘Vicks Humidifier Not Working’) in the winter is an excellent idea so long as you maintain it clean on a regular basis to prevent the discharge of air pollutants and mold fungi.
You should also only use clean water and follow the humidifier’s instructions book.
For optimal results, choose a humidifier suited for the size of the room.
In addition, if you are using your humidifier before going to bed or when you are sleeping, try to do that especially when the humidity levels fall below 30% to avoid developing respiratory problems and prevent that unpleasant feeling of dry air that might make your body feel bad.
How Can I Lower The Humidity In My House In The Winter?
The humidity levels in your house can reach their highs if you have a lot of houseplants with standing water or are in the habit of boiling and cooking things in the kitchen without using the ventilation that is necessary to keep the air clean.
Another thing you might be doing that is wrong is taking hot showers without opening your windows or door, or turning on the ventilation, as all these practices can drastically raise humidity levels.
What you can try at first is to make small changes in terms of your habits at home or to move your things around if something is blocking the ventilators or the windows and thus keeps you from using and opening them.
That way you will be able to prevent your room’s atmosphere from being most, avoid mold development, and any allergic reactions.
For example, houseplants could be moved outside or reduced in number, any mold and mildew on the walls and foundations should be repaired, windows and doors should be closed well to avoid leakage and, if not, they should be changed alongside any old plumbing tubes that might have gone moldy.
When it comes to your daily habits, you should consider reducing the amount of time you spend in the shower and make sure you use proper ventilating systems to lower the humidity levels.
The same goes for the kitchen whenever you are using it to boil your coffee or steam your vegetables.
If you do all these things and still see that the humidity levels are high, then it is best to get a dehumidifier to help prevent mold, viruses, and all the unpleasant illnesses we have mentioned, including regular coughing that might even lead to more serious colds.
Does A Window Air Conditioner Remove Humidity?
High humidity levels can attract pests such as cockroaches, therefore it’s critical to discover strategies to reduce them, which is why a window air conditioner can be an effective means of eliminating moisture from the air.
When you turn on your air conditioner, it does more than just blast cold air into the room: the more the air becomes cooler, the more moisture is sucked from the interior air and collected within the appliance.
Even though an air conditioner does a wonderful job of naturally eliminating humidity from the air, you may want to invest in a dehumidifier to specifically do this job.
In contrast to an AC, a dehumidifier is made for not just humidity but also toxins and mold spores, as well as any unpleasant smells that are a result of the walls getting moldy.
If you decide to use a humidifier, keep the interior temperature above 60 degrees to avoid any technical problems that lower temperatures can cause to the machine.
Because air conditioners (see also ‘What Temperature Should I Set My Air Conditioner In Summer?‘) are meant to function in warmer conditions, they should not be used in the cold.
If you decide to use the air conditioner when it is cold though, double-check the unit and the manufacturer’s recommendations to make sure that it will not have any functional problems.
Because of its system that detects the room temperature, the air conditioner may sustain damage or cease to function, and we are pretty certain that you do not want to let it go to waste just like that, as it is a very useful appliance for when you need to warm up the rooms at home.
The Bottom Line
We hope that after reading this article, you will know better how and when to adjust the humidity levels in your home throughout the winter.
As the optimal humidity range is between 30% to 50% for most households, it is good to keep checking that throughout the day to make sure that you are breathing clean and fresh air when you are at home.
Indoor air with a humidity level of less than 30% is too dry, whereas indoor air with a humidity level of 60% or more is too wet.
Maintaining a healthy humidity range, venting bathrooms and kitchens, and encouraging air circulation can allow you to breathe easier and sleep better.
These are all practices that are very easy to follow and can guarantee that you will not suffer from mold, mildew, or any respiratory issues.