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Humidity FAQ's


Can I have to much humidity?
How much water does a humidifier use?
What health benefits does a humidifier provide?
What is the proper humidity setting for my home?
What causes moisture to form on my windows?
Why do I need a humidifier?

Further Reading: Moisture Problems In Homes

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Why do I need a humidifier?

A humidifier adds moisture to your indoor air, and can help relieve other ailments related to dry membranes such as dry skin, chapped lips, scratchy throats, dried out noses, flu, colds and static electricity

While nothing can alleviate these problems completely, a humidifier can help by adding water to the air. The colder the air is, the less humidity there is in it. Geisel suggests that the optimum indoor relative humidity should be right around 40 percent during the winter months.

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Can I have to much humidity?

Yes! To much humidity indoors could cause condensation inside, especially on your windows. High levels of humidity can also promote the growth of organisms such as fungi, bacteria, mites and viruses, which can be common allergens for many people.

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What Health Benefits Does a Humidifier Provide?

Conditioning the amount of moisture in the air is necessary for your family’s health. One of the major causes of respiratory infections is excessive heating during cold weather. The start of furnace heating each fall causes many people to begin having repeated attacks of winter colds. Winter weather is blamed for these problems, but, the actual cause is dryness which develops in the membranes of the nose, throat and bronchial tubes, due to the dry air produced by artificial heating. A humidifier keeps the indoor air comfortably moist, despite high heating demands.

With central heating, people are confined indoors with unnaturally dry air for six to eight months a year. Humidifiers let you choose the humidity level, so even in the coldest winter months, you can keep your respiratory system moist.

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How Much Water Does a Humidifier Use?

Depending on the model you choose, a humidifier uses from 1.5 to 22 gallons per day when the furnace is operating. This minimal amount of water is plenty to raise the humidity to your desired level, but not enough for you to even notice a difference on your water bill.

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What Causes Moisture To Form On My Windows?

Your humidistat is set too high if excessive moisture collects on windows and other cold surfaces. Excess humidity for a prolonged time can damage walls especially
when outdoor air temperatures are very low. Excess moisture condenses on window glass because the glass is cold. Other sources of excess moisture besides overuse of
a humidifier may be long showers, running water for other uses, boiling or steaming in cooking, plants, and drying clothes indoors. A tight, energy efficient house holds
more moisture inside; you may need to run a kitchen or bath ventilating fan sometimes, or open a window briefly. Storm windows and caulking around windows keep the interior glass warmer and reduce condensation of moisture there.
Humidifiers are not recommended for use in buildings without proper vapor barriers because of potential damage from moisture buildup. Consult a building contractor to
determine the adequacy of the vapor barrier in your house. Use a humidity indicator to measure the relative humidity in your house. The American Society of Heating
and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) recommends these maximum indoor humidity levels.

Outdoor Recommended Indoor
Temperature Relative Humidity
----------- ------------------
+20 F. 35%
+10 F. 30%
0 F. 25%
-10 F. 20%
-20 F. 15%

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What is the proper humidity setting for my home?

We recommend setting the dial at 35%. You may want to raise or lower it slightly, however, because every home is different. Increase the humidity setting until you see a small accumulation of water droplets on your windows. When this occurs, lower it just a touch. At this time, the proper humidity level for your home has been reached.

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