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How Effective Are Whole Home Humidifiers in Winter?

It’s that time of year again when the weather gets cold and dry, and your skin feels it. A whole-house humidifier can help alleviate these symptoms by adding humidity to the air. How effective is a whole house humidifier in winter? Star Heating & Cooling explains what this device can do for your home and family this season.

How Does a Whole House Humidifier Work?

Have you ever wondered how a humidifier can help your home feel more comfortable during the winter months? Though it may seem like magic, the process is actually quite simple. Whole-house humidifiers connect to your heating system and add moisture to the dry indoor air via steam or a water panel, in turn adding humidity to your home. 

There are a few different types of whole home humidifiers on the market, each with its own advantages. 

  • Bypass humidifiers are relatively simple devices that work as dry air from your heating system passes over a wet wick, adding moisture to the air before it is distributed throughout your home by the HVAC system’s fan. 
  • Fan-powered humidifiers are a bit more complex, using a fan to draw dry air through a moistened wick. These units tend to be more effective than bypass humidifiers, but they also use more energy. 
  • Steam humidifiers are the most sophisticated type of humidifier, using boiling water to create a stream of moisture-rich air that is piped straight into the ducts. These units are very effective, but they can also be expensive to operate.

Benefits of a Whole House Humidifier in Winter

The ideal indoor humidity levels for human comfort are between 30 and 50%. In the winter, when homes are heated, the air inside can become very dry, with relative humidity as low as 10%. 

Most people are familiar with the benefits of using portable humidifiers in their bedrooms. By adding moisture to the air, humidifiers can help to ease congestion, relieve dry skin, and prevent static electricity.

However, whole home humidifiers offer even more benefits. Because they are installed directly into your HVAC system, a whole house humidifier can evenly distribute humidity throughout your entire house. This can help to improve indoor air quality, reduce the spread of germs, and prevent wood floors and furniture from drying out and cracking. In addition, whole home humidifiers can also help to reduce the occurrence of dry skin, nosebleeds, sore throats, and respiratory infections. 

Cold weather means dry air, and dry air means an increased risk of developing respiratory illnesses. When the air is dry, it can cause the mucous membranes in your nasal passages and throat to become dry and cracked, making it easier for viruses and bacteria to enter your body. A whole-home humidifier helps to alleviate this problem by providing moist air to your home. This not only helps to prevent the development of winter illnesses, but it can also help to reduce the severity of symptoms if you do get sick.

You may think that humidifiers are only used to relieve dry skin and sinuses. However, whole home humidifiers can also help to lower your heating costs. Heat-heated air can hold more moisture during the winter months than cold air. Humidified air feels warmer, so you may be able to lower your thermostat and still feel comfortable when using a whole home humidifier. As a result, using a whole home humidifier in the winter can help to save money on your heating bill.

Install a Whole Home Humidifier Now

Using a whole home humidifier in winter can be an effective way to add humidity to your home. By installing a whole home humidifier, you can help improve indoor air quality and make breathing more comfortable. If you’re interested in adding a whole home humidifier to your home, contact us for a quote. We would be happy to help you get set up with this important piece of HVAC equipment.