6 Signs Your Home Needs a Humidifier

April 26, 2016

As a Raleigh resident, you’ve become all too familiar with summer humidity. When you walk outside, you can often feel the moisture in the air collect on your skin. And if you straightened your hair, you can count on curls a few hours later. Understandably, you’d assume that you want less humidity inside your home, not more. However, maintaining a comfortable environment may be more difficult than you think. Just as extremely high humidity levels wreak havoc on your home, so do equally low humidity levels. As the cold weather months creep closer, you may find that a humidifier can solve a surprising number of problems, including some of the following.

  1. You Suffer From Frequent Nosebleeds

Nosebleeds occur for a variety of reasons, from physical trauma to chronic illness. However, dry air remains one of the greatest contributors to nosebleeds.

Every time you inhale, the dry air pulls moisture from your nasal membranes or the soft tissues in your nose. As they dry out, the membranes start to crust, which leads to itchiness and irritation. If you scratch or pick at these tender areas, your nose may bleed as a result.

With a whole-house humidifier, you can adjust the moisture content in the air so your nose stays comfortable.

  1. You Have Warped Wood Flooring

During the summer, wood pulls moisture from the air, and the more it absorbs, the more it expands. Several days of high humidity or a few weeks of moderate humidity make your flooring bulge and cup.

In contrast, the air pulls moisture from wood flooring in winter. And the more water it loses, the more your flooring contracts. Exposure to low humidity leaves the wood with thin gaps between the planks, and in severe cases, the wood splits and cracks.

Although a professional contractor can design wood flooring to accommodate natural expansion and contraction, you can extend the lifespan of your flooring when you regulate the humidity levels in your home.

  1. You Frequently Experience Static Shocks

During the summer, you may have intentionally rubbed your feet against the carpet. After a few seconds of friction, you could easily give your friends a small shock of static electricity.

But during the winter, you might not have to try hard to pass that shock along. The dry air in your home allows the negative charges to transfer freely between surfaces, so you are more likely to dissipate static electricity whenever you touch a doorknob or a metal chair.

When you have humidity in air, however, the water molecules have an easier time collecting on various surfaces throughout your house. The water then inhibits electrical buildup, so you can touch your pals without giving them that extra jolt.

  1. You Can’t Seem to Stay Warm in Winter

Water has a high heat capacity, which enables it to absorb a great deal of energy before the hydrogen bonds break. As a result, water absorbs and retains heat better than many substances.

Dry air, in contrast, has a difficult time retaining heat. Though your furnace works hard to keep your home at a comfortable temperature, the air molecules won’t absorb the heat for long. After a while, the heat dissipates and leaves your home, leaving you cold despite your current thermostat settings.

To efficiently absorb and retain heat, the air in your home needs some water molecules in it, which means you need to keep humidity levels stable. With a humidifier, you can ensure your home has adequate humidity, which in turn allows your furnace to effectively heat your home.

  1. You Have Sleep Apnea

As mentioned above, dry air pulls moisture from your nasal membranes, leaving your nose sore, dry, and uncomfortable. If left untreated, your nasal passages may restrict, inhibiting your ability to breathe.

To compensate for lack of air flow, you may try to breathe through your mouth in addition to breathing through your nose. As your tongue relaxes during sleep, it naturally falls to the back of your throat, partially blocking your airways and increasing the likelihood of snoring.

Many doctors recommend using humidifiers in conjunction with sleep apnea devices to improve comfort and minimize congestion.

  1. You Unsuccessfully Grow Indoor Plants

How many times have you purchased a houseplant, watered it regularly, and then watched it wither and die anyway?

Many commercial indoor plants grow up in a humid greenhouse conducive to their growth. And many plants originate from tropical environments, so they require high humidity levels to thrive.

Dry air pulls water from the pores of your plant’s leaves, and in some cases, the air pulls more water than the plant can absorb through its roots. If your plants have thin, delicate leaves, they likely need extra humidity from your humidifier to grow and remain healthy.

Talk to a Technician About Your Next Install

As you can see, humidifiers offer a lot of benefits, and you’ll likely see several more when you install one in your home. Talk to a professional about humidifiers for your home and discuss which option would work best for you and your family.

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