Summer in Richmond, Virginia, usually goes in hand-in-hand with high humidity levels. Humidity not only makes outdoor activities more unpleasant, but it can also affect your home's comfort levels and health. When left unchecked for too long, humidity can even lead to property damage like peeling paint and serious structural damage. To keep your home comfortable and property safe, use these six ways to reduce indoor humidity this summer:
Check Your Air Conditioner
One of the first things you should do to prepare for summer is to have your air conditioner checked. Preventative maintenance is crucial for making sure your AC system doesn't break down during the hottest days of the year. Your air conditioner plays a significant role in reducing humidity. If it isn't functionally properly, it'll struggle to keep your home's humidity levels under control. We recommend sticking to an annual maintenance schedule to keep your air conditioner in tip-top condition and help identify minor problems early to avoid major repairs later.
Ventilate Your Home
Ventilation is extremely important when avoiding humidity problems in the home. Open windows or doors at least once a day to help fresh air circulate through the house. You may feel that this counteracts the effect of the air conditioner's efficiency, but you only need to promote this airflow for short periods. Alternatively, you can add a ventilator to your HVAC system. A ventilation system is one of the most effective ways to control indoor humidity. It replaces stale air with fresh air, removing pollutants and improving your home's indoor air quality.
Modify Household Chores
Washing machines, dryers and dishwashers are some of the most wonderful conveniences of modern life. However, these appliances can contribute to humidity in the home. To avoid this, run the dishwasher at night when temperatures are cooler. When doing laundry, only run the washer when you have a full load and dry your laundry outside when possible. This has the added benefit of saving electricity. If you can't hang laundry outside, try to have your dryer vents directed outdoors.
Invest in a Dehumidifier
When humidity levels rise above 50 percent, your home becomes an uncomfortable place in which to live and can even affect your sleep quality. To stay comfortable, humidity levels should remain between 30 and 50 percent. Add a dehumidifier to your HVAC system to keep your home's humidity levels at the correct level. Our air handlers come with refrigerator-styled insulation made without exposed fibrous material, which eliminates condensation to keep you cool and comfortable.
Use Exhaust Fans
Exhaust fans work by extracting excess moisture from the air. In the summer, make use of the exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathroom. Cooler showers will reduce moisture in the air, but an exhaust fan will help if you opt for a hot shower. When dinnertime rolls around, cooking on the stove or in the oven can make your house even hotter. Consider grilling outdoors a few days a week to help keep temperatures down.
Inspect the Inside and Outside of Your Home
Excess moisture hides in all sorts of places — both inside and outside the home. Inside, check for dripping faucets and leaks around the washer. Stagnant pools of water can lead to a significant rise in your home's humidity levels. In addition, make it a habit to wipe all wet surfaces like the sink dry after doing dishes and the bathroom basin after brushing your teeth.
Next, head outdoors and inspect the roof, gutters and downspouts. Leaves and debris clogging gutters and downspouts can cause water to seep into your home. Make sure downspouts point at least 5-6 feet away from your home's walls to prevent water from pooling near the foundation.
Excess moisture can cause all kinds of problems for a house. It can result in a build-up of bacterial growth, which in turn can lead to health problems, poor indoor air quality, discomfort and even damage your property. If your air conditioner needs repairs or you're considering installing a dehumidifier or ventilation system, contact Air Excellence, Inc. at 804-885-3888. We'll help you stay cool and comfortable all summer.
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