Missouri Homeowner’s Guide to Dry Indoor Air

Indoor Air Quality in O'Fallon, MO

Proper indoor air quality has a major influence on people’s health and happiness. But breathing in dry air can cause a host of problems. These problems range from irritated respiratory tracts to warped wood furniture. To have a healthy home, it’s important to know what produces dry indoor air and how it affects people. Let’s take a look at the top causes of dry air. We’ll also cover how it affects you and your house and nine practical remedies.

Causes of Dry Indoor Air

A number of things may cause dry air to build up in a house, which can be very uncomfortable and even dangerous. The use of heating systems, particularly in the winter, is a common cause of low humidity. Seasonal changes, especially in colder regions, have the potential to make dryness even worse. Factors that lead to low humidity include overheating living environments and the usage of certain equipment. Another factor is the absence of moisture sources, such as houseplants or clothes dried in the air. A lack of natural ventilation, airtight housing, and environmental variables like low relative humidity also play a role. For a healthier and more pleasant interior climate, it is essential to identify and resolve these factors.

How Dry Air Affects You and Your Home

There are a number of ways in which dry air harms a house and its inhabitants. Skin dryness, eye irritation, and the worsening of respiratory problems are some of the physical side effects. In regard to your home, excessively dry weather can cause cracks or warping to appear in wooden structures and musical instruments. This includes everything from hardwood floors to walls and more. A lack of moisture in the air also leads to issues with static electricity, which can damage electrical gadgets. Furthermore, it can cause indoor plants to wilt.

9 Ways to Get Rid of Dry Indoor Air

Protecting a home’s structure and inhabitants against dry air via preventive measures is a win-win. Maintaining a comfortable relative humidity helps those with respiratory issues and keeps hardwood furniture and instruments in pristine condition. Optimal humidity also improves energy efficiency by lowering the need for heating. This can lead to a reduction in energy costs.

1. Whole-Home Humidifier

Integrating a whole-home humidifier with the HVAC system allows for precise control and maintenance of relative humidity throughout the residence. Whole-house humidifiers work in tandem with the HVAC system to maintain a constant humidity level. This solves problems like dry skin and respiratory discomfort. A comfortable indoor humidity level for Missouri winters is between 30% and 40%. With this range, you can fight dry air without worrying about window condensation. Using a whole-house humidifier to maintain humidity creates a balanced and pleasant interior atmosphere year-round. However, adjustments may be necessary, depending on individual comfort and environmental factors.

2. Indoor Plants

Indoor plants are a natural way for homeowners to improve the air quality in their homes. They do this by adding humidity and reducing the effects of dry air. Plants such as peace lilies, spider plants, and Boston ferns are great options for summertime in Missouri. At warmer temperatures, these plants release more water. Plants like aloe vera, snake plants, and succulents are hardy choices for the winter. They continue to add to the total moisture level even as they adjust to decreasing humidity. Whether you’re dealing with summer or winter dry air, include a range of these plants strategically around the house. This will provide a continuous and visually beautiful solution.

3. Air-Drying Laundry

A great way to make a room more humid is to hang clothes to dry inside. When you live in Missouri, you should do this in the winter, when the air is usually drier. To promote faster drying and better air circulation, position drying racks or lines in close proximity to radiators or vents. When drying things out, take advantage of empty places like doors, corners, or areas near windows. Decreasing the need for electric dryers helps with both dry air and energy efficiency.

4. Avoid Overheating

Preventing dry indoor air requires careful attention to temperature regulation in the house. Humidity levels drop when temperatures get too high, which can cause discomfort and even health problems. Set the thermostat to a moderate temperature, wear layers for warmth, and utilize blankets to maintain appropriate moisture. Find a happy medium that allows for sufficient moisture without being too dry. Another option for effective temperature regulation is to use programmable thermostats. This preventative measure promotes energy efficiency while making the home a healthier place to live.

5. Use Vaporizers

Vaporizers provide targeted relief, while whole-house humidifiers distribute moisture uniformly throughout the house. By combining whole-house humidifiers with vaporizers, homeowners can target particularly dry regions. This makes vaporizers an effective tool for protecting residents from the discomfort of dry air while also improving everyone’s quality of life.

6. Ventilation Fans

Homeowners in Missouri can battle dry interior air by strategically using ventilation and exhaust fans. To keep your kitchen and bathrooms cool and pleasant, use fans to remove any extra humidity. The key is to have enough air circulation so that you don’t get too much moisture in the summer and too little in the winter. In Missouri, you can maintain a healthy interior humidity level all year by adjusting the fan speed and direction according to the seasons.

7. Seal Leaks

Combating dry indoor air and maintaining ideal humidity levels requires sealing air leaks. A lot of dry air from the outside can seep inside a house via cracks and crevices. Sealing the cracks around their windows, doors and other entrance points fixes the problem. This preventative measure makes the house more humid and saves on energy bills.

8. Change the HVAC Air Filter

The AC or furnace’s ability to manage humidity levels efficiently depends on keeping the filter clean. A clean filter promotes humidity management, reducing strain on the system, which results in fewer breakdowns. It also leads to better indoor comfort. Check the manufacturer’s instructions to see how often to change the filter. Most homes benefit from changing the filter at least once every two to three months.

9. Schedule HVAC Maintenance

Cleaning, inspecting, and fixing problems with the HVAC system are all part of professional maintenance. This guarantees that the system is running at its optimal efficiency, successfully controlling indoor humidity. Preventative maintenance may also help find and fix issues before they cause dry conditions. By keeping up with HVAC system maintenance, homeowners can make a conscious effort to create a healthier home. This includes avoiding the discomfort of dry air and protecting the home’s structural integrity.

Hoff Heating & AC offers a variety of services you can use to help your home combat dry indoor air. These services include whole-home humidification systems, ventilation, and HVAC maintenance. We also help homeowners in O’Fallon, MO, with air purification and geothermal heating and cooling. Give us a call now to learn more about combating dry indoor air.