Measuring humidity in your home is a regular task you should be doing as a homeowner.
Having too much or too little humidity levels in your home can wreak havoc, cause damage, and even harm your health and your family’s health if there is mold growth.
Some ways you can measure humidity in your home are with the ice cube method, wet and dry bulb temperature test, hygrometer, and homemade hair hygrometer.
Read on to find out how you can start managing indoor humidity in your home.
4 Ways to Measure Humidity in Your Home
1. Ice Cube Method
This technique will show you how humid and dry the air is currently in your home.
All you have to do is put some ice into a glass of water and set the cup in a room where you think the moisture level may either be too high or too low.
Note: Do not put your cup in a kitchen or bathroom where moisture levels are not the same consistently.
Next, place your water and ice cubes on a table in your room and walk out quickly without too much movement as it can impact the outcome.
You will need to leave the ice cubes and water in the room for five minutes.
After the time has passed, check the glass. If the condensation formed on the outside of your glass cup, the moisture is too high.
2. Wet and dry Bulb Temperature Test
An easy way to figure out the humidity levels in your home is by using two old-fashioned thermometers (the ones that have glass and mercury tubing).
You will need to use one of the thermometers as a “dry bulb” measure and one as a “wet bulb” measure.
Before you begin, shake the mercury in both thermometers so it can settle in the bulb of each one.
Next, moisten the wet bulb thermometer. You can use a damp cotton ball and put it on the thermometer’s bulb.
Be sure to use room temperature water for this experiment.
Now, you will want to duct tape the dry bulb and wet bulb thermometer on a piece of cardboard. Make sure both bulbs are facing outwards.
Turn on a fan where you want to check moisture levels, pointing it towards both thermometers. Leave the fan on for five minutes.
After the time is up, check the temperature on both thermometers.
You will need to subtract the temperature on the wet bulb from the dry bulb temperature.
For example, using the Celcius scale, a 10 degrees Celsius difference – also known as the depression value – will show the humidity percentage.
To find the percentage and value, check out some free tables online like this one.
Hygrometers are a simple tool that can be used to measure humidity levels and the amount of water vapor present in the air.
There are several types of hygrometers you can use, you can even make your own! If you don’t own a hygrometer, check out the steps below to make your own hygrometer.
What Humidity Level Should Your Home Be?
The ideal indoor humidity level is between 30 and 50 percent, but the ideal level may vary slightly depending on the season.
Humidity Too Low Isn’t Any Better Than High Levels
Dry air is not a good thing either.
It can also damage wood furniture and floors. Use a humidifier to increase the moisture in the air if needed.
So, whether your humidity levels are too high or low, it’s important to take some steps to improve the situation.
By measuring the humidity in your home and taking the appropriate actions, you can make sure that you and your family are comfortable and healthy.
Why It’s Important to Regulate Your Indoor Humidity
The humidity levels in your home play an important role in your comfort, health, and overall wellbeing.
Too much humidity can lead to problems such as mold growth, increased allergies, respiratory problems, and even structural damage to your home.
Too little humidity can lead to problems such as dry skin, static electricity, sinus congestion, and difficulty sleeping.
How to Increase Your Indoor Humidity Level
- Increase the humidity level in your home by using a humidifier.
- Open your windows to let in the fresh air and increase the humidity levels that way.
- Remove any excess carpets or rugs from your home, as they can trap moisture and decrease the indoor humidity levels. You don’t have to remove all of them, but if you have some you could go without, it could help.
- Put plants in your home; they act as natural humidifiers.
- Dry your clothes indoors; this will add moisture to the air.
- Take shorter showers and baths and use cooler water, as hot water evaporates more quickly and can actually decrease the humidity levels in your home.
How to Decrease Your Indoor Humidity Level
- Use a dehumidifier to reduce the humidity in your home.
- Open your windows and doors to allow air to circulate and help remove excess moisture from the air.
- Turn on fans to help circulate the air and remove moisture. Installing some exhaust fans (if you have the proper room ceilings) can help tremendously with this, especially in the bathroom for when you take showers and for a while after you get out. An exhaust fan will reduce a lot of the moisture buildup that happens naturally with warm showers. If this is not an option, you can just leave the door open just a bit or crack a window.
- Reduce the number of plants in your home, as they add moisture to the air.
- Hang clothes to dry outdoors; this will remove moisture from the air.
- Take shorter showers and baths and use cooler water, as hot water evaporates more quickly and can actually increase the humidity levels in your home.
How to Consistently Manage Proper Humidity Levels in Your Home
The first step to creating a comfortable environment in your home is knowing what the ideal humidity levels are.
If you have central heating and air conditioning, your HVAC system can help you maintain ideal RH levels.
Most units have a humidifier/dehumidifier option that can be turned on as needed.
Maintaining proper humidity levels in your home is an important part of creating a healthy environment.
Too much humidity can cause mold and mildew growth, while too little humidity can lead to dry skin and respiratory problems.
By using a hygrometer and following these tips, you can keep your home at a comfortable humidity level all year round.
Maintaining the proper relative humidity level in your home is important for your comfort, health, and overall wellbeing.
Use a humidifier to increase the humidity in your home, and a dehumidifier to decrease it.
Be sure to monitor the humidity levels in your home with a hygrometer so that you can make adjustments as needed.
If you notice you have a humidity issue that you can’t seem to find a resolution for, you should contact an HVAC technician.
They will be able to help you measure and resolve the humidity levels in your home.