Low indoor humidity levels is why we tend to get sick in the winter and why heating bills can be 20% higher.
At 10 degrees outside your home’s indoor relative humidity can be in the single digits with a furnace. The relative humidity of one of the driest places on earth, Death Valley, CA, is 25%. Your body likes around 35% to stay healthy.
How your body’s immune system works and the power of humidity.
It’s dark and cold when you come in the back door. Red faced, dry, itchy skin, chapped lips. The house even feels chilly at 70 degrees. You naturally feel dry air in the wettest parts of your body first. Your sinuses, throat, eyes and skin dry out making you uncomfortable. Dry nostrils can crack and give you a nosebleed.
Scorched sinuses, itchy skin.
Did you know your sinus cavities are protected by paper thin and fragile mucous membranes? Mucus keeps them pliable. When dry, they crack allowing germs and sickness a direct channel into the bloodstream. That’s a real problem in winter, when cold bacteria and flu viruses linger longer in the dry air after someone coughs or sneezes or touches a doorknob.
Mucus’ job is to wash viruses and other icky invaders found in your nose and sinus into a little opening at the back of your throat, your uvula. That’s where mucus from sinus cavities drains into your stomach allowing acids kill the germs.
How does your body furnace regulate temperature?
Body temperature is controlled by secreting moisture from perspiration, which evaporates, absorbing heat from your skin. The dryer the air, the faster evaporation and quicker your body cools.
When it’s cold you feel chilly and turn up the furnace thermostat, drying the air even more causing your body to evaporate moisture and the cooler you feel.
Your furnace then kicks up clouds of dust, pollen, and other allergens that can inflame your sinuses and airways. (Learn about air cleaner.) For some people with asthma, cold and dry air can lead to a narrowing of breathing passages and trigger an attack.
What’s the lowest-cost way to lower heating bills?
Moist air will help keep your skin, mouth, and nose lubricated, help prevent those nasty static shocks and makes your home warmer allowing you lower heating bills up to 5% for every 1 degree you lower the thermostat. A whole home central humidifier also helps with creaky wooden floors, piano or other wood instruments, leather, furniture, rugs, sinus problems, comfort complaints, even electronics.
Dry winter air reminders.
Seal your home windows, doors, basement, attic. Prevent the cold, dry outside air from paying you an unwelcome visit. Can help lower heating bills 10% according to the EPA.
Hydrate often. Keep your skin and mouth moist by drinking.
Moisturize your skin. Use a good lotion for dry skin and keep your nasal passageways moist by using saltwater (saline) drops.
Air cleaner. Since your furnace is blowing dust and germs around, a whole home air cleaner can help you breathe easier. See air purity video.
Add comfort. Improve your health and indoor comfort by trying a PDM Whole Home Humidifier. We believe in a humidifier so much we want you to try it for 30 days free. If you are not happy we’ll remove it and refund your money. Contact PDM.