Cleveland HVAC Blog

What's the Proper Humidity Level for Your Home in Winter?

Posted by P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling on Tue, Jan 05, 2016 @ 01:26 PM

proper-humidity-level-in-winter.jpgThe winter has arrived, and that means air will turn extra dry. While rubbing lotion on your skin and reducing your time in the shower will help, being mindful of your home's humidity level will make an even bigger difference.

Research has shown that an indoor humidity level of 40-60% is ideal for maximum comfort and health. Yet keeping the home's air this moist for an entire winter can lead to ice and water forming on the windows. Moisture will collect along the wall and cavities of the attic and this this can lead to serious problems. The solution is to find a happy medium between indoor humidity levels that won't cause moisture issues, or contrarily, nosebleeds. Homeowners who have a humidifier should adjust it at the outset of the winter to a level that will not over-humidify the living space. Use a hygrometer to accurately measure the relative humidity level. In general, lower outdoor temperatures will require a home with a lower humidity level. 

For optimal comfort, indoor humidity levels should be adjusted based on the outside temperature:

  • When the outside temperature is 20-40 degrees Fahrenheit, the indoor humidity level should generally not exceed 40%.
  • When the outside temperature is 10-20 degrees Fahrenheit, indoor humidity levels should not exceed 35%.
  • If the outdoor temperature is 0-10 degrees, the indoor humidity level should remain at 30% or slightly lower.
  • In instances when the outdoor temperature is between -10 and 0 degrees Fahrenheit, the humidity level should not exceed 25%.
  • In those rare instances when the outdoor temperature drops to 20 below to 10 below, the humidity indoors must not exceed 20%.
  • Though it rarely occurs, an outdoor temperature of 20 degrees below (or lower) should be paired to a humidity level of 15% or less. 
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This requires a lot vigilance on the part of the homeowner.  If you would like to take this issue off your "to do" list, you can install a control that changes the indoor humidity target based upon the outdoor temperature automatically!  Just contact the pros at P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling to find out how.

Ohioans can rest easy this winter if they're confident that their home has the proper humidity level. Lean on the HVAC experts at P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling for all of your home's comfort needs. We go out of our way to make sure that each customer's expectations are surpassed. For more information on heating system maintenance and home humidity concerns, contact P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling today!

Topics: humidity level

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