We’ve talked before about properly maintaining your HVAC system as we move into the cooler months, but there is one phenomenon that occurs during the winter months that most homeowners overlook: humidity. Left unchecked, humidity levels over 60% can wreak havoc on your drywall, foster the growth of mold and mildew, and destroy your belongings.
Since opening a window would be counterintuitive to retaining heat in your home, what are some ways you can reduce your indoor humidity level without sacrificing comfort?
Update and Use Your HVAC System’s Humidity Control
HVAC systems typically use a cold coil system to remove excess moisture from your indoor environment. In order to maintain the desired temperature, excess humidity needs to be removed first, so regular maintenance is necessary to keep the coil performing at its best.
Depending on where you live, cleaning the coil could be done every 6 months or monthly if the coil tends to accumulate dirt more rapidly.
However, crutching upon the coil alone will only reduce the efficiency of your entire system, so adjusting your airflow as needed and adding a dehumidifier to your system would work wonders.
Get Plants That Help Absorb Moisture
It may sound silly, but certain house plants can help absorb some of the excess moisture in your home environment. English Ivy is one good example of a pet-friendly plant that not only absorbs moisture, but also removes fecal particles from the air, as well. Also, as plants also absorb carbon dioxide and convert it into oxygen, your home environment will be even healthier while livening up your living space.
Other plants to consider include Boston ferns, Peace Lily, and Reed Palm. Just be sure to research any house plants you may be considering, as some can be toxic to both children and pets.
Run Your Fans Regularly
Even if you aren’t cooking or using the restroom, running your fans can ultimately help remove excess moisture from the entire home. However, if you notice that one area in particular is more humid than the rest, a leak may be the cause, which will only make your HVAC system work harder to compensate.
Kitchens and bathrooms tend to be the rooms that hold the most moisture in most homes, so be sure to run these whenever things start to get too muggy.
Clean Your Filters
One commonly overlooked item in home HVAC care is keeping your air filters clean. When clogged, your system has to work harder in order to achieve the desired indoor temperature, which hinders it from removing excess moisture.
Clean your air filters once every 6 months or as needed for maximum efficiency.
How FAMCO Can Help
FAMCO is one of the largest manufacturers of various roof and wall vents, adapters, and accessories in the Pacific Northwest. We also have a wide variety of learning resources, including an attic roof ventilation calculator that helps you determine if your current ventilation is adequate for your living space. In the winter, hot air can become trapped in your attic, which can only increase your indoor humidity level and imperil your investment.
If you have any additional questions regarding indoor humidity and how to combat it, feel free to get in touch with us. We’ll be happy to help.