The ideal relative humidity for health and comfort is somewhere between 30-50% humidity, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Humidity is a Balancing Act in the North where your furnace operates most of the day (and Night).
Whether you just moved “up North” or lived here all your life keeping your home’s perfect humidity level is a delicate balancing act.
Why? The number one factor, or culprit, is your furnace. Sub factors include your comfort level (what temperature you keep your thermostat at) and of course the outside weather conditions.
Regretfully the perfect humidity level is a moving target. As the external forces of nature change so does your comfort level and so does your need to regulate the humidity.
This is NOT all about your comfort. Regulating the humidity (or not regulating the humidity) in your home can/will affect your health and your homes structure.
Too much humidity in a home is mostly noticeable on the windows of your home as seen in this picture. If it’s on the windows it most likely is in places you do not notice as well such as the walls, up high closest to the ceiling. If you see it here, or even drops starting to run down the wall, you need to turn off that humidifier NOW and let your home dry out some.
I maybe should have started out with the simple advice of go to the hardware store and purchase a humidity gauge. I purchased a couple at Menards for less than $10.00 each. I keep one on the main level of my home and one in the lower level.
Some homes have furnaces with humidifiers built in and in other homes you need an external home humidifier. Just a note, I have yet to meet a furnace repair man who thinks a furnace with a humidifier built in is a good idea. Further note furnace sales people will greatly brag up that a furnace has this wonderful feature (that repair men say is a bad idea), just so you know.
Purchasing the “right” humidifier is more of a personal preference than a science as far as I am concerned. I like having a small humidifier in my bedroom but for some people they are too noisy. I also have a larger one as a whole house humidifier.
This photograph is a good example of the lack of humidity’s effect on your health. While it may not look like much I can assure you it can be painful (BTW Crazy Glue works great on this problem BUT be careful).
In summary: Get a humidity gauge and keep an eye on it. Expect to make adjustments along with the frequency of the operation of your furnace. Ignoring the need for humidity, or excessive humidity can be bad for you and your homes health.
Thanks Nina Hollander, Broker . My space would be similar in size but not as high.
Bob "RealMan" Timm hi Bob... if it's a small space it shouldn't be too expensive to do. My crawl space is probably 16+ square feet and you can stand up in it. That was about a $10K project when I built my house.