There’s a reason why air seems drier in the winter than when it’s warmer. That’s due to the fact warmer air carries additional moisture, or humidity, than colder air.
The same is true within your the U.S. residence. Turning on your gas furnace makes your residence feel warmer but can also dry out the indoor air. Dry air can carry a whole host of ailments, such as dry skin, cracked lips and make you more likely to get sick.
Here’s why your gas furnace dries out your house’s air and what you can do to counter it.
The fuel your furnace consumes isn’t the source responsible for making your home’s air seem dry. Rather, it’s the way it combusts.
There are two different types of gas furnaces, standard and high efficiency. With an older standard furnace, you can see light from the burners when it’s heating. A newer, high-efficiency furnace is entirely sealed.
A standard furnace, also known as an atmosphere furnace, pulls air from inside your residence to function. Because the furnace consistently relies on air to burn, it will also use cold, dry air from outdoors, which in turn lowers your home’s humidity.
High-efficiency furnaces, also referred to as a sealed combustion furnace, are ideal for keeping your humidity balanced. They take all their combustion air from outdoors, but it stays trapped within the sealed furnace. As an added advantage, they keep your home more comfortable while using less energy. Switching to an ENERGY STAR® furnace from an old furnace may save you as much as 40% on heating costs, according to Lennox®.
Other than combustion, cold air also naturally flows into your house during the winter. Reduced humidity means the air will snatch moisture quickly from your skin, lips, nose and throat. It’s also to blame for static electricity.
Using a humidifier. While a portable humidifier can only make one room comfortable at a time, a whole-house humidifier will generate that comfort throughout your residence.
These are just a couple humidifier benefits you’ll acquire when you upgrade to a whole-home system.
It’s common that cold weather is the worst time for colds, flu and other illnesses. That’s because you’re more susceptible to become sick when your nose and throat are dry. Under certain airflow conditions, air at the correct humidity level might also resist the spread of some viruses. Also, it can combat year-round allergy symptoms.
If you have constantly dry skin or eczema, you know just how irritating those conditions are during winter. Getting a whole-house humidifier will help your skin hold onto more moisture.
Keeping your bedroom at the ideal temperature and humidity level will keep you cozy at night. It can also help with loud snoring, since your throat and nose will be better hydrated.
Cabinets, flooring, furniture and generally anything in your residence that’s wood suffers when humidity is too low. This is a result of the fact dry air draws moisture from the wood and causes it to split. Keeping your house’s humidity at the correct level will keep your residence’s furnishings looking their best.
Between consistent filter changes and continual refilling, portable humidifiers require a lot of upkeep. A whole-house humidifier only needs maintenance about once a year, which can be completed in tandem with your furnace tune-up.
A steam humidifier has the smallest amount of maintenance since it doesn’t require a pad. It holds water in a canister and boils it into steam that gets moved through your ductwork. Since it’s independently powered, it can run when the furnace is off.
If your home’s air feels less than comfortable during cold weather, Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing can help. Call us at 866-397-3787 to arrange a free home comfort consultation. There’s no pressure, just free Expert suggestions on how you can keep your house’s humidity at just the proper level. And, like our other services, our work is backed by our well-known 100% Satisfaction Guarantee for one year.*
*Not applicable to the Advantage Program. See your signed Advantage Program Agreement for full details and exclusions. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee is subject to certain restrictions and limitations as set forth in the applicable Terms and Conditions.
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