This is the fourth and final post in my Home Protection Series. So far I’ve talked about protecting your basement, protecting your home from neglect and protecting your home from improper sealing. I hope you have enjoyed these maintenance tips. They are by no means the only maintenance you should be doing, but it’s a great start!
Today I’m talking about humidity. Any Friends fans out there? Do you remember when the gang went to Barbados and Monica’s hair got a little out of control…
Maintaining optimal humidity levels in your home is important for your home’s health. Too high or too low can wreak havoc on the materials in your home, your health and yes, your hair.
Low Humidity Levels
Anything under 30-35% relative humidity is considered low. Low humidity levels can cause your home to be dry and could cause damage to wood products and drywall. In conditions that are too dry, hardwood floors can shrink and cause gaps between the wood planks. And what about your health? Dryness can cause dry nose & throat, dry skin and even increase your likeliness of getting a cold.
What can I do if my house is too dry? Use a humidifier! We recommend installing a humidifier that works in conjunction with the furnace. You can also purchase a standalone unit. It’s important to change the filters regularly and make sure you install a unit that will cover the amount of square footage in your home.
High Humidity Levels
Anything over 50% is considered to be high humidity. High humidity levels in a house can cause moisture in building materials. Hardwood floors can cup (edges turn up) and drywall can stain due to elevated humidity. It can also be a breeding ground for mold, mildew and destructive insects like termites and cockroaches.
What can I do if my house is too humid? You should always run exhaust fans that have been installed in your bathrooms and kitchen (if applicable). This will remove excess moisture. In the summer, resist the urge to open your windows. Running your AC during the warmer weather will ensure the humidity levels are consistent. You can also install a dehumidifier. For best performance, make sure you dump the water out of the unit regularly.
Don’t know what the humidity level is inside your house? You can pick up a humidity reader for super cheap. I don’t have this one but it gets good reviews on Amazon.
Do your home (and your hair) a favor and maintain the humidity in your home. It will make caring for your home over the years easier and both you and your home will be healthier for it!
Dream Big. Build Smart.