Humidity in your home can cause a great amount of discomfort during the harsh summer heat. Even worse, humidity in your house can cause serious health hazards. The increased moisture in the air can lead to mold and rot on surfaces that pose significant health risks.
Humidity levels in Texas homes can reach 60% on hot and steamy, summer days. Your air conditioning will work diligently to reduce your humidity to a more comfortable level, around 30% to 50%. When you reduce humidity in your home through simple steps, you are saving money on your energy bill. You are also proving better circulation and cooling of your home.
Keep you and your family safe and comfortable this summer by following these tips.
Buying a dehumidifier can save money on AC in the long run. By dehumidifying the air, you make the conditions of your home feel cooler. Therefore, you can increase the temperature of your AC and save money. If you’d like to dehumidify just one room, the cost of a smaller size dehumidifier is an average of $50. If you’d rather dehumidify the entire house, the price ranges from about $150 to $300. Portable dehumidifiers are available in stores and come in many different sizes.
Ventilating properly can also help to reduce humidity. Hot and long showers produce a great amount of steam that leads to humidity. Try putting the ventilation fan on while showering or opening a window. Also, try decreasing your shower time and temperature.
Another tip is to turn the fan on while you are cooking in the kitchen. The steam from boiling can cause humidity. Even better, cover all boiling pots and pans while cooking. This can prevent scents from overpowering your home.
Fans increase circulation that can reduce humidity and condensation in your home. Add standing or portable fans in the most humid areas of your home like the bathroom, kitchen, and attic.
Your washer and dryer produce a large amount of humidity. To reduce humidity, make sure to load the washer and dryer only when you have a full load. Another option is to dry your clothes outdoors which will also save money on utilities. Make sure that your dryer vents outdoors as well. If a dryer vents indoors, then you are just adding steam and condensation into the air.
Plants release moisture into the air. While plants open their pores to take in Carbon Dioxide, they also release water, creating moisture. If you have an abundance of green in your home, you may want to consider moving some plants outside. Over-watering plants can contribute to adding moisture to the air. Only water plants and flowers when necessary. The same goes for plants outdoors. Overwatering will create puddles near your foundation, increasing humidity.
Make sure that downspouts are draining water away from your home rather than creating wet areas by your foundation. You can try redirecting downspouts so that the water falls away from your home by at least five feet rather than settling around it. It’s also a good idea to plant your garden at least one foot away from the border of your home.
Gutters and downspouts should be kept clear at all times. By regularly checking gutters and downspouts you can ensure that your home will be kept humidity-free. Don’t forget to check for leaking faucets while you do your outdoor maintenance routine as well. Leaking faucets lead to pools of water that damage your foundation, bills, and indoor humidity.
Check Your AC
Although it may be difficult, increasing the temperature on the AC can help reduce humidity. An alternative to blasting the AC is to raise the temperature but then turn on the fan instead. As temperature increases, humidity decreases.
Your AC drain lines and drip pans, which are the pipe and pan which carries water from humidity outside of your home, are often an overlooked source of humidity. Make sure that they are well checked and kept clear of water build up.
Multiple areas of your home can cause moisture to humidify your home. Your windows, pipes, basement, and attic act as entryways for moisture. That in combination with steam from showering and cooking, can equate to 18 gallons of water per week in a medium sized home. Insulating these areas can help decrease humidity and lower your heating and cooling bill throughout the seasons.
Some insulating materials are plastic wrap for windows and caulk to fill in cracks in your walls. Wall cracks act as another entryway for moisture that you can fill through caulking.
For more drastic measures yet greater benefits, you can waterproof the walls of your home. Some waterproofing materials include Drylok and Xypex which can be applied to your walls like paint. These products can also be used to fix cracks in concrete walls.
Keep Surfaces Dry
The easiest way to reduce humidity in your home is to keep surfaces dry. After washing dishes, make sure to dry your sink and counter. The same goes after brushing your teeth or taking a shower.
When left alone, the seemingly harmless water puddles will lead to mold (the brownish black color in between tiles and in shower corners). Have a dish rag or worn-out towel by your kitchen and in your bathroom to dry areas where water piles up easily and is usually left to dry on its own.
If you have tried many to all of these preventatives to humidity, the problem may be your AC unit. AC in your home usually has features to eliminate humidity. If you think these features are broken or aren’t working to its highest capability call Stan’s AC today to fix the problem.