The name is a hint as to what a humidifier does. When the air inside a room, building or other living space is too dry, it requires an increase in humidity. Humidity is the measurement of moisture in the air. A humidifier sends water vapor into an area surrounding the unit which changes add to the humidity.
The basic reason for using a humidifier is to provide comfort in an otherwise dry space. Hot and dry air has a low humidity value and can be the cause of many problems. Most of them are related to the health of the individuals breathing the air so a humidifier corrects this issue.
How Does A Humidifier Work In The Home?
Most good humidifiers for home use are controlled by a sensor built into the unit. The sensor reads the humidity value in the area it is located. This humidity value is referred to as Relative Humidity, and this is the percentage of moisture in the air relative to the temperature.
A humidifier can be set and works to keep the humidity levels between certain percentages – a low and a high value – and when either one is reached it triggers the unit to turn on or off. When it senses that the humidity in the air is low, the unit turns on and moisture is added to the air, and when the upper level is reached, the humidifier shuts off. In other words, it regulates the humidity.
If you are unsure what the levels of humidity are in your home, you can purchase a hygrometer to monitor and do spot checks in different rooms of your house. Click here for more information on different hygrometer options.
What Are The Benefits Of Having A Humidifier?
With a regulated humidity level indoors, dry conditions are virtually removed. When a room or building is too dry it can have adverse effects many people in different ways. In addition to experiencing dry skin and cracked and chapped lips, dry air can cause other issues.
When breathing hot and dry air it can create dryness in the mouth and nasal passages. This can lead to sleep disorders and increase the risk of coughing and developing the symptoms associated with colds and flu. Dry skin can also become itchy and irritated. A humidifier stops this.
Are Humidifiers Good For Your Health?
There are additional health benefits to using a humidifier. Studies have shown that living and working in optimal humidity conditions can reduce the risk of upper respiratory infections. It also suggests that the same conditions can prevent sore throats and cold virus development.
Individuals using a humidifier for asthma and allergies can find relief by regulating the moisture content in the air they breathe. However, it is recommended to regulate the humidity levels between 30 to 50-percent to prevent the growth of mold and dust mites which are common triggers for asthma and allergies.
How Can A Humidifier Help The Rest Of My Home?
Regulating the moisture level in the air can help more than just humans and pets. If you live in either a dry climate or where there are long, cold winters, a humidifier can protect some of your belongings. For example, artwork, paint, and wallpaper can be damaged in dry conditions.
Wood flooring and wood furniture can also suffer in dry air conditions. Using a humidifier to keep moisture levels in check keeps the wood from drying out and cracking or splitting. Plus, with moisture being put into the air it will eliminate static electricity from forming.
Are Humidifiers Good For Babies?
Babies have very sensitive skin and they also have an even more sensitive respiratory system. If dry air irritates your skin, eyes and nose imagine what it is doing to a baby. It can cause interrupted naps and sleep. Cold, dry air can also encourage virus growth in their nursery.
With an infant humidifier in a baby’s room, the moisture content can be altered to a comfortable level. This will reduce the risk of cold, flu and any other infection developing. A humidifier for infants helps to ensure your baby will have soft, smooth skin and lips and a reduced risk of irritation.
Have a look at the short video below to see how to use a humidifier in a baby’s room. And for a more in-depth review of why humidity control in a baby’s room is important, see this article.
Do Humidifiers Work In Cold Rooms?
Cold, dry air causes the skin to dry which becomes itchy and irritated. Dry skin on the hands and lips can become cracked and chapped which is painful. Also, cold, dry air affects the respiratory system and can lead to nose bleeds when the nasal passages lack moisture.
A humidifier works well in a cold and dry environment. This makes one of these units very valuable during winter and during the heat of summer because it regulates the moisture content in the air we breathe. A cold room can benefit greatly from having an increase in humidity.
Do Home Humidifiers Cause Mold?
Provided that the humidity level does not exceed a certain percentage, the risk of mold growth and development is generally not an issue. An air humidifier and purifier that keep the air moisture in a room or building between 30 and 50-percent will not promote mold or mildew from forming.
Excessive humidity, in other words, a warm and wet environment, will create the ideal conditions for mold formation. This is why humidifiers have settings and sensors that control the amount of water vapor they send into the air to create safe conditions with optimal humidity levels.
As discussed, a humidifier can be set to control the humidity levels in your home to make it a much more comfortable environment for you and your family. It also has benefits that can assist with issues with sensitive skin and can help those with asthma and allergies.
So if you feel as though the air in your home can get too dry, you may want to consider a humidifier. There are a number of different options that can help, from filterless room humidifiers, to furnace humidifiers designed to regulate the humidity in your whole home.
Either way, there are options to help with your specific situation. Make sure that you check out the links above for different options to help make the environment in your home more pleasant.