From checking your plumbing for clogs and leaks to ensuring your roof is sturdy enough to provide shelter, it is easy to see how maintaining your home can be overwhelming. Unfortunately, most homeowners do not place much emphasis on the humidity level inside their home. High humidity not only increases the risk of dangerous mold growth, but it can also lead to home damage, expensive repairs, and high energy costs.
High humidity levels inside the home may stem from a variety of issues. However, understanding how your doors and windows contribute to indoor air quality and humidity levels is smart. Using this guide, you will understand the dangers of high humidity and learn if you need to replace or improve your doors and windows.
High Humidity Dangers
If humidity is high in your home, you may first notice a clammy feel in your house and on your skin. This moisture is not only uncomfortable, but it can also lead to serious health issues while damaging your home.
To test the humidity, consider investing in a hygrometer. Hold the hygrometer in the air at a few different locations of your home. The meter will take a measurement after a few seconds. Healthy levels will be between 30 and 50 percent. If your levels are measuring over 50 percent, humidity is high in your home.
High levels of humidity may irritate your skin, eyes, and respiratory system. If mold begins to develop due to the moisture in your home, you may also develop serious breathing issues, fatigue, dizziness, and headaches.
An increased level of humidity can also cause paint and wallpaper to peel, decreasing the look of your home. In addition, your house may have a foul, musty odor.
Signs It Could Be Your Doors and Windows
Inspecting your doors and windows periodically is essential for preventing and correcting a humidity issue.
Start on the exterior of your home and look for gaps between the exterior siding and the doors and windows. If you notice gaps, conditioned air is not only leaking out of your home, but the outside air is also seeping into your home. During the summer, the air from the outside can increase your home's humidity levels.
After inspecting the exterior parts of your doors and windows, move to the inside of your home. Check for visual gaps between the frames of doors and windows on the inside. Inspect the threshold of each door. If you see daylight peeking through, the gap is also allowing air in and out of your home.
Not all air leaks are visible, so you should also use your hands to feel for air leaks. Move your hands along the sides of the doors and windows. Air moving through the cracks between the frames and doors or windows is a cause of humidity problems.
If you notice visible cracks that are less than ¼-inch wide or feel air seeping into your home, apply a caulking compound to seal up these cracks. The application of caulk will prevent air leaks, preventing any further increase in your high humidity levels. To seal up cracks around doors and windows, opt for a water-based foam sealant. Water-based foam sealants do not expand, so you do not need to worry about the sealant stopping the doors and windows from opening properly.
Condensation on glass doors and windows is also a sign of high humidity. Over time, this condensation can cause the wood frames to warp and rot. In most cases of damage due to condensation and humidity, you will need to replace the frames, doors, and windows.
Replace your old, damaged doors and windows with energy efficient options to restore your indoor air to a healthy, non-humid state while also decreasing energy usage. Less air will leak through these new energy efficient windows, reducing your home's risk of moisture and humidity. Also, new energy efficient windows reduce energy costs by up to 12 percent.
High humidity can affect your health and the quality of your home, so proper understanding is smart. With this guide, you will learn the dangers of high humidity and determine if your doors and windows are a cause for concern. Contact a company like Statewide Energy Solutions to learn more about energy efficient doors and windows.