If the condensation on your windows is so thick that you haven’t had a clear view of the outdoors since November, you may have a winter humidity problem.
When temperatures drop, and drop a lot as they have this winter, high indoor humidity can become a problem.
High indoor humidity can fog and eventually rot your windows. With constant condensation, mold will begin to grow on vinyl windows. And that’s mold that you and your family will breathe in every day. Bathrooms and kitchens are moisture monsters too—boiling pots and steaming showers build up water vapour in the air that condenses when it touches cold walls and windows. In this environment, mold will eventually start to grow.
To vent that moisture, run the bathroom fan for about 20–30 minutes after showers. Use the kitchen vent to clear the air while cooking. And avoid drying your clothes on racks inside. If you must, dry them in the bathroom with the fan on.
On the flip side, not enough moisture in your home can cause its own set of problems, namely itchy skin, coughing and runny noses.
The most accurate way to measure your home’s humidity level is with an inexpensive hardware store hygrometer. This device measures the humidity level present in the air. Or simply look at your windows. If you see condensation, your home has too much humidity. Most experts suggest that 25–30% humidity in winter is where you want to be. Upwards of 60% encourages mold and even dust mite growth. If you have a humidifier built into your furnace, you will want to check it when outdoor temperatures fluctuate. Remember that cold air can’t carry as much moisture, so when temperatures plummet, adjust the humidifier settings accordingly.
With these simple things in mind, you can make it through the winter and still see out the window!
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