Cool Change Heating & Air in Raleigh knows when clients think of their AC, they imagine the big box that keeps air cool for their house. Many people don’t think about the fact that your HVAC equipment is also responsible for keeping humidity levels under control.

Ideally, the air in your house is not only cooled to a nice temperature in summer (or heated in winter), but is also resting at a humidity range between 40-60%. This is the level of humidity at which most people feel comfortable and that best suits human health.

What if humidity is too low

Low humidity can be a result of season, geographical location, or your HVAC equipment. In winter, the cool air carries less moisture than it does in summer months; as air enters the house and heat is added it becomes even more arid. If you live in a dry location that will likely translate to low humidity levels, as well. Concerning your HVAC equipment: as your AC works to pull heat out of the air it’s also pulling out any excess moisture; the more often you cycle your AC, the more moisture it will remove.

The best way to describe the effects of low humidity levels on your skin and eyes? Itchy. The tear film on your eyes dries out and your skin feels scaly and can flake. Thought discomfort is an issue with low humidity, the main problem involves your respiratory tract. Prolonged exposure to low humidity dries out the mucous membrane that lines your respiratory tract. When this happens, it increases your chances of contracting infection.

Additionally, some viruses survive longer in low humidity; as that sneeze you were so sure to cover dries out, the virus remains and clings to the air.

What if humidity is too high

Too much humidity can also be an issue for similar reasons. The most pronounced issue: you’re sitting in a sweat puddle. When the air around us is damp, it makes the air stuffy and uncomfortable. Your thermostat could be set to a perfectly agreeable temperature, but if the air is damp it will seem noticeably warmer.

Higher levels of humidity also create a perfect breeding ground for fungi, mold, and airborne chemicals. High levels of these undesirables can lead to serious health issues for anyone – and particularly those who suffer from allergens and asthma.

What happens when the humidity is just right

When the humidity levels in your home remain between 40-60%, not only can you feel the difference in terms of comfort, but you reduce your chances of getting ill from harmful bacteria because it reduces significantly their chances to multiply and spread which keeps you and your family healthy.

If you’re having trouble controlling the humidity in your home, give this article a quick read to learn about the Most Common Reasons for Humidity Issues. (links to Most Common reasons for humidity issues article).