High indoor humidity is not only a comfort problem, but can cause an unhealthy indoor environment. The moisture from high humidity levels can cause mold and mildew to form in a home. When is humidity considered too high? The optimal humidity level for a home is 45% to 55%, anything higher than this could start to cause issues.
Most heating and cooling systems are not designed to manage indoor humidity. The thermostat goes primarily by temperature, so some indoor humidity control is an incidental byproduct of the HVAC system running.
Sometimes humidity is what is making the home uncomfortable, more so than the temperature. To keep an eye on the humidity levels in their home, homeowners can by an inexpensive humidistat. It will show homeowners the humidity levels, so they can manage the moisture in the home.
Daily activities such as cooking, bathing, and showering produce indoor moisture and a rise in the humidity. Homeowners can try to lower the humidity and moisture by:
- Using bathroom vents during and after showering
- Using the kitchen vent hood when cooking
- Running the air conditioner
- Investing in a swamp cooler
Homeowners can check and use the humidistat to evaluate the effectiveness of their moisture management strategies using the above suggestions. If these strategies are not working, there could be a larger problem. Excessive indoor humidity can be a sign of other moisture source problems too. Check the crawl space for a full vapor barrier with no exposed dirt or standing water. Be sure it is also sealed to the foundation wall. The roof is another area to inspect as a leak in the roof could be causing the humidity issues or poorly sealed windows may be the culprit.
If indoor humidity is problem, ask Diamond Heating and Cooling to inspect the HVAC system. The system might be undersized or may not be running properly, causing extra humidity. Diamond Heating and Cooling can also give homeowners tips on managing humidity and keeping the house cool during the warmer months.