10 Helpful Ways to Reduce Indoor Humidity

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How To Reduce Indoor Humidity

By James K. Kim

10 ways to reduce indoor humidity

We all know how incredibly uncomfortable it feels to experience high humidity, especially inside your own home during the summertime.

It’s just plain unfair to be hot, sweating, and miserable in your own home when indoor humidity levels are soaring.

If only there was a way to relieve this discomfort and restore your indoor air quality and comfort back to normal humidity levels this summer.

Luckily, there are a number of solutions to this issue you can try today to start feeling more comfortable and tame your indoor humidity problems once and for all.

Keep reading to learn more, or call Cottam Heating & Air Conditioning to reduce your indoor humidity today!

What is a good indoor humidity level during the summer?

Most HVAC experts would agree that the ideal indoor relative humidity level is between 30% to 50% for a typical home.

However, too much moisture in the air (60% and above) makes you feel hot and uncomfortable, and can even damage your home.

In fact, too much humidity can trigger organic growth and build up condensation within the walls. This results in structural damage, wood rot, and other issues affecting building integrity and safety.

Overly humid conditions can also negatively affect the human body, leading to health issues such as respiratory problems, an increase in allergy flare-ups, and disrupted sleep patterns.

Maintaining an ideal humidity level between 30-50% balances the fine line between too much moisture and too little moisture, which keeps you and others in your home more comfortable.

How do I know if my home is too humid?

While feeling hot and sweaty in your home is a solid indicator of high humidity levels, another method of measuring your home’s humidity is with a hygrometer.

A hygrometer is a tool that measures and logs the relative humidity and moisture levels of a home. Our team of expert comfort consultants at Cottam Heating and Air Conditioning can use hygrometers to measure and track the relative humidity levels of your home.

If the hygrometer data shows your home is consistently above the 50% threshold, our consultants can make a number of different recommendations to help lower the relative indoor humidity levels and restore comfort.

How can I lower the indoor humidity in my home during the summer?

If it’s been proven your home has higher than normal humidity levels, there are a number of methods you can try to help reduce it.

Here are 10 helpful ways to reduce indoor humidity in your home:

1. Use your air conditioning system

An air conditioning system will naturally help lower indoor humidity levels due to the introduction of cooler air into a space while simultaneously removing warm, humid air. To maximize the benefits of humidity removal, it’s important to keep your air conditioning system maintained in peak working condition and replace the filter regularly.

2. Get a Whole Home Dehumidifier

Another proven way to lower your home’s indoor humidity level is to get a dehumidifier.

Dehumidifiers can either be a separate unit or fit directly within your existing air conditioning system. They remove moisture from the air, resulting in drier, cooler air that refreshes and comforts everyone in your home.

As an added bonus, you may find that you can actually run your air conditioning system less than usual, due to its enhanced ability to keep humidity levels low.

The end result (besides increased comfort) is less money spent on your energy utility bills.

3. Utilize Your Exhaust and Ventilation Fans

To help reduce indoor humidity, it is important to run your bathroom ventilation fan when showering and your stove fan when cooking.

And while it’s normal to turn off these fans after these activities are over, it may be a good idea to keep them running just a little bit longer to help further reduce indoor humidity.

4. Open a window

It sounds simple, but sometimes just opening a window can help reduce indoor humidity levels.

Obviously, doing this when the air conditioning system is running can be counterproductive and costly, since you’ll be spending money on cooling air that is going out the window.

5. Lower your shower water temperature

It’s not rocket science that hot showers contribute humidity to the air.

As much as a hot shower can feel great, it can also be counterproductive if your goal is reducing humidity levels in your home.

While it’s not necessary to make the switch to cold showers, you may find that just lowering the temperature of your showers even a few degrees won’t create as much steam into the air, thereby reducing humidity in the home.

6. Fix leaky pipes

Adding unnecessary moisture into the air from leaking pipes and faucets is a contributor to higher indoor humidity levels for a home.

Fixing all problematic and costly leaks can help reduce humidity, in addition to wrapping exposed piping with insulation to help keep condensation from forming.

Leaks that are not easily visible leave telltale signs including stained drywall and higher than normal water bills.

7. Clean your gutters

Surprisingly, gutters can be a leading cause of indoor water leaks and humidity buildup, leading to unfortunate and costly scenarios for both you and your home.

That’s why it’s important to regularly clean your gutters, and ensure your downspout is directed away from your home and extended by at least 6 feet.

8. Dry laundry outside

Some fabrics and clothing items cannot be put in the dryer, leading to the use of indoor drying racks. Unfortunately in the summer, these damp clothing items will further contribute to your home’s elevated humidity levels.

Whenever possible, it may be a better idea to hang clothes on an outside drying rack or clothesline.

And if you do hang and dry clothes indoors, it is helpful to also add a dehumidifier.

9. Temporarily relocate house plants

While plants are beautiful and excellent resources for cleaning the air and producing oxygen, they also add to the indoor humidity levels of your home. And the more plants you have, the more humidity levels will increase.

During the summer months, you may consider just a temporary relocation of house plants to a well-ventilated room or outside.

10. Break out the charcoal

A handy timesaver for backyard BBQs, charcoal briquettes can also double as a dehumidification tool.

Try placing a few charcoal briquettes into a basket or similar type of receptacle and place them in a few rooms throughout the home. Since charcoal is super absorbent, the briquettes will actually suck the moisture right out of the air. Remember to replace the briquettes every 2 to 3 months to maintain effectiveness.

Interested in a whole-home dehumidifier?

Cottam Heating and Air Conditioning offers a variety of top-of-the-line whole-home dehumidifiers to help alleviate high humidity levels in your home or business.

Modern technology has gifted us with the tools to take control of our own comfort and quality of life now. Call Cottam Heating and Air Conditioning today to help you reduce your indoor humidity levels.

James K. Kim is a comfort consultant with Cottam Heating and Air Conditioning. He has over 5+ years of experience working in the HVAC industry, and specializes in helping home and business owners maintain ideal room temperatures and improve their indoor air quality. In his free time, Jim plays on two men’s league ice hockey teams and two mens league baseball teams.

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