According to the Mayo Clinic the ideal home humidity range is between 30-50%. In the winter, indoor air can have humidity levels as low as 10%. Most smart thermostats have humidity sensors to measure the humidity in your home and to keep your main HVAC system operating as efficiently as possible. Humidifiers can be used to add moisture to the air, improving your health and benefiting your wallet.
Why care about humidity?
- Low humidity damages wood furnishings. Too little moisture in the air can cause wood to split and crack, damaging furniture, molding, doors and flooring. Low humidity can also cause paint to dry out and flake, wallpaper edges to shrink and peel, and damage paintings, plants and instruments.
- You can reduce your heating bill. The heat a body feels is a combination of temperature and humidity. The more moisture in the air, the warmer it will feel and the lower you can keep your thermostat.
- Dry air wreaks havoc on your health. Low humidity can lead to dehydration, dry skin, nosebleeds, and aggravate asthma, allergies and other sinus problems.
- Reduced risk of infection. One 2013 study found increasing humidity levels to 43% could reduce the ability of airborne viruses to transmit disease by as much as 82%.
In addition to the benefits above, humidifiers can also help you heal faster, alleviate snoring and reduce static electricity in the air.