Humidity in the home makes your indoor environment less comfortable. Some moisture in the air is helpful to help prevent the spread of germs and avoid drying out your skin. However, if any areas in your house feel damp or sticky, the humidity is too high. Here are eight simple strategies for reducing the humidity levels in your home.
1. Turn on Exhaust Fans
Exhaust fans move moisture from your indoor air to the outside of your home. If you have a ventilation fan over the kitchen stove, use it while cooking. The excess heat and water vapor produced when heating food will be carried outside instead of recirculating indoors. Plus, the exhaust fan helps get rid of cooking odors.
Bathrooms are another place where exhaust fans are needed, especially if there are no windows in the room. Run the fan when you take a shower or bath so the steam doesn’t settle and cause mold or excess humidity in your home.
2. Vent the Dryer to Reduce Humidity in the Home
The clothes dryer is designed to extract water from laundry, and it should always be vented to the outside of your home. Don’t vent appliances into a basement or crawlspace where excess moisture can seep back into main living areas.
3. Have Your HVAC System Serviced
A properly operating HVAC system with new filters moves air efficiently and helps control humidity levels in your home. Schedule a maintenance inspection at least once a year and change filters as recommended.
4. Cool Down Your Showers
Shorter, cooler showers produce less steam than a hot shower, reducing the amount of humidity that accumulates in your bathroom. Set an alarm and shorten your average shower time by a few minutes.
5. The Air Conditioner Helps Control Humidity in the Home
Your air conditioning system draws warm moisture out of the air, so running the AC helps reduce the humidity in your home. Of course, this is only a comfortable solution in warmer weather. In cooler months using a fireplace or wood stove dries out the air in a room.
6. Install a Vapor Barrier
Crawlspaces accumulate moisture from the ground. If you don’t have enough ventilation in these spaces, the moisture can be transferred to the rooms above. Install a vapor barrier to keep moisture from the earth out of the crawlspace and your home.
7. Use a Dehumidifier
A dehumidifier is a machine designed to pull moisture from the air and help control humidity levels. They are often used as a way to prevent mold and mildew growth in enclosed spaces, but dehumidifiers can be used effectively in any room to lower humidity.
8. Waterproof Concrete Surfaces
Concrete walls that aren’t properly sealed allow moisture into your home. Make sure that any concrete walls and floors have been well-sealed to avoid this problem.
Take Control of the Humidity in Your Home
High humidity levels in your home lead to mold and mildew growth on surfaces and in walls and carpeting. Mold contributes to health concerns like breathing problems and allergy-like symptoms. Humid air is more difficult to heat and cool than dry air, so your HVAC system will have to work harder. Keep the humidity under control by using the above strategies.