Q:

How can you manage home humidity levels?

A:

Quick Answer

People manage home humidity levels in several ways, including properly ventilating clothes dryers and washers outside, running fans to have air continually circulating, operating whole-house dehumidifiers and keeping air conditioning units properly cleaned and functional. Some people select houseplants to absorb excess water as a cost-effective method of controlling humidity. Avoiding activities on excessively humid days, such as boiling water on the stove or taking long showers, reduces household humidity levels as well.

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Full Answer

Ideally, people should keep their homes at a humidity level between 30 and 50 percent. Having humidity levels above that number, in addition to making inhabitants uncomfortable, can damage household furniture and appliances and invite the growth of mold and mildew.

Fortunately, several methods exist for keeping humidity levels in check. Making minor household improvements, such as putting plastic lining over dirt floors, reduces humidity. Fixing leaks in air vents and ducts helps too. People should also inspect their air conditioning units to ensure drip pans and wires remain free of debris. Families can also invest in a dehumidifier, which draws excess moisture from the home and expels it outside.

People should also place vents behind washers, dryers and in bathrooms and kitchens to move warm, moist air outdoors. Outside the home, preventing water pooling, keeping drains and gutters clear and minimizing plant watering helps control humidity levels as well.

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