I remember my mom and dad dumping buckets of water into the big humidifier in our living room each winter in Nebraska. I loved the warm moist mist that steamed from it, making the hot dry air pumped out by the furnace a little easier to breathe. I never really thought about it until I moved out of the house and started missing that “moist air feeling” in my own home. I’ve had a humidifier ever since.
The air in your house in the winter, no matter how temperate the climate, can get very dry. It happens right about when the heater starts clicking on. That’s when the humidifier comes out. Experts say that you should keep the indoor relative humidity (water vapor in the air) at between 35% and 55%. Get a hygrometer to easily test your humidity levels. It works like a thermometer.
Why Do You Need a Humidifier?
* Your Health: Low humidity dries your skin, causes nasal situations and makes your eyes itchy. Humidifiers keep your skin moisturized, help relieve cold and flu symptoms and can relieve asthma symptoms (check with your doc first). The American Academy of Pediatrics, as well as other medical organizations, recommend the use of humidifiers and vaporizers for treating upper respiratory infections. Proper humidity levels year round will help you avoid colds, bloody noses and sinus problems.
* Lower Utility Costs: You will feel warmer at a lower temperature so you can turn your thermostat down a couple degrees in the winter.
* Your Furniture, Art and Instruments: Dry air can ruin your wood floors, wood furniture, piano, guitar and artwork.
* Your Electronics: Dry air causes static electricity. Sometimes funny, sometimes just a pain, but these “zaps” can wipe out computers and electronics.
What kind of humidifer do you need? Read Humidifier Types & Tips.
If you have a portable humidifer, are you keeping it clean or Is Your Humidifier Making You Sick?