How to Tell If the Air in Your House Is Dry

Man coughing

During the winter season in Cedar Rapids, IA and beyond, the air is naturally much drier than it is over the summer months. The cold temperatures mean less moisture can be carried by the air – both indoors and outside. Dry air problems are often abundant this time of year, so let’s review how to tell if the air in your home is dry as well as what you can do to put an end to these seasonal dry air issues.

Dry Air Symptoms

There are plenty of ways to tell if the indoor air is dry, as dry air can produce some pretty noticeable effects on our bodies as well as our homes. These symptoms can range from mild annoyances to serious illness. If you notice any of the following signs while spending time inside your home, you may have a dry air problem.

  • Increased static electricity
  • Frequent nosebleeds
  • Dry skin
  • Chapped lips
  • Dry throat and nose

While these physical symptoms may seem mild, they can contribute to more significant health issues. Dry air dries out the body’s mucus membranes, which serve as a line of defense against infection. Dry air can leave you more susceptible to contracting illnesses and viruses spreading through the air supply. Plus, some viruses are more easily spread when the air is dry, putting you at an even higher risk of sickness.

Beyond your physical health, signs of dry indoor air can also include some signs specific to your house and its contents. Wood in homes, from floorboards to doors, can warp or crack due to dry air pulling moisture from within these items. Dry air may cause paint or wallpaper to peel or chip, and wooden furniture may be damaged.

Dry air also causes comfort to decline indoors. The body feels colder when there is little moisture in the air, as moisture helps hold heat close to your skin. Sweat also evaporates quickly in dry conditions, robbing the body of its natural warmth. As a result, you may have to turn the thermostat up higher to maintain a comfortable temperature which expends more energy than necessary, if the air was properly humidified.

Solving Dry Air at Home

As you can see, dry air can affect bodies, structures, and belongings. Fortunately, we don’t have to suffer through long winter months stuck with dry air – the addition of a whole home humidifier can alleviate your dry air symptoms and make your home more comfortable even though it’s cold outside.

A whole home humidifier is installed alongside the home’s HVAC system, which allows the humidifier to treat the home’s entire air volume as it cycles through the system for winter heating. Bypass or fan-powered humidifiers use a water panel to add moisture to passing air, while steam humidifiers boil water and add steam moisture directly inside the ducts.

Using a whole house humidifier will allow you to keep relative humidity levels properly balanced all winter long. Generally, a relative humidity level between 30 to 50 percent is considered balanced, but it can be appropriate to go a bit lower in times where outdoor temperatures are quite low.

Whole Home Humidifier Installation

When it’s present, it’s pretty obvious to tell if your Cedar Rapids area home has dry air because its symptoms are so bothersome. Adding a whole house humidifier is just what you need to keep comfortable and healthy indoors this winter. Call Novak Heating and Cooling to request a quote for whole home humidifier installation in Cedar Rapids, Robins, Marion, North Liberty, or Hiawatha, Iowa.