How a Whole-House Humidifier Keeps You Healthy
There are many advantages to adding a whole-house humidifier to your Washington home. Adding a humidifier can increase the comfort level in your home and lower your annual energy expenses. Proper humidity levels can allow you to maintain indoor comfort levels at a lower temperature which uses less energy for heating.
At Ballard Natural Gas, our professionals will walk you through the design process and ensure that your Seattle home is the ideal design to properly utilize a whole-house humidification system. We believe you should have total control of your indoor health, safety, and comfort—our mission is to provide you with practical solutions so that you can achieve that goal!
How a Humidifier Keeps You Healthy
Benefits to a properly installed whole-house humidification system include:
- Soothing cold and flu symptoms by moisturizing your nasal passages and throat and bronchial tubes.
- Reducing some allergy symptoms.
- Relieving some dry skin conditions.
- Lessening snoring.
- Protecting wooden flooring and furniture from cracking due to low humidity.
- Reducing utilities.
- Increasing general comfort.
Between work and home, most of us spend the vast majority of our days indoors. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, the concentrations of some indoor pollutants are often 2 to 5 times higher than typical outdoor concentrations.
Choosing a Whole-House Humidifier
You never want to buy a car that is too large for your garage—nor do you want to buy a humidifier that is the wrong size for your home! Similar to your other heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, you want to be sure you are purchasing a humidifier system that suits your needs.
Here are a few types of humidifiers to choose from:
Bypass humidifiers add moisture to air passing through your furnace or air handler. These types of humidifiers are the most basic of your options and pass the warm air from the heating system over the humidifier to collect the evaporating moisture.
The newly collected moisture is then distributed throughout your Seattle home using your existing duct system. Because these units require a home heating system, they work much better with furnaces as opposed to heat pumps because of the higher air temperatures generated by furnaces.
Bypass humidifiers require a drain and water line for proper installation. They are the least expensive of your options for a whole-house system, but also deliver the lowest amount of humidification because they require system operation for evaporation.
The only real difference between a fan-powered humidifier and a bypass humidifier is the need to use the fan to increase airflow and therefore increase evaporation. Fan-powered humidifiers can produce up to a gallon more of humidity per day compared to bypass humidifiers. The internal fan motors within these units are also very efficient, using the same amount of energy as a 25-watt lightbulb. This system is considered much more efficient than bypass humidification systems.
Steam humidifiers create steam to input humidity in the HVAC system. They use electricity to boil the water. The steam is then distributed throughout your home using the existing airflow system. Steam humidifiers are the fastest and most efficient way to increase and maintain the desired level of humidity in your home.
Steam whole-house humidifiers also provide the purest and most natural form of humidity you can have within your home. They are also the most vulnerable to rapid corrosion and system damage due to poor water quality.
Advantages With a Whole-House Humidifier
Any whole-house humidifier is installed directly into your home’s central heating and cooling system. Location and ease of access to your humidification system is another important factor to consider. Your comfort adviser will review the different options for you, including the pros and cons of each type of system.
Once properly installed, a whole-house humidifier is less work than a portable one. Portables require constant monitoring of water tanks and regular cleaning. With a whole-house humidifier, you could perform routine maintenance as little as two times a year. This depends heavily on both proper installation and the quality of water going through your humidifier. If your water is heavily calcified, it will rapidly cause build-up on the humidifier and may require additional water purification devices for the humidifier to function properly.
A properly designed and installed humidification system can make a world of difference in your home but only if designed and installed properly. A poorly installed system can cause a world of headaches for the unsuspecting homeowner. Improper humidification and design can lead to mold throughout the home or attic.
Along with the installation of a humidification system, it is always important to make sure your ductwork is in proper shape to prevent unwanted bacterial growth. Equipment failure due to poor installation can lead to leaks and damage your home’s ceilings, walls, insulation, framing, or even roofing.
Call Your Air Quality Experts Today!
Poor indoor air quality (IAQ) can lead to a variety of health problems. Schedule an appointment today with Ballard Natural Gas to have one of our professionals test the air quality inside your Seattle, WA home or business. Call 206.784.8101 or visit us online to learn more about whole-house humidifiers and other products designed for your comfort.