I live along the northern border of the country, where winter is the longest season.
We sometimes need to start up the furnace in late August. It’s not unusual to have several inches of snow on the ground for Halloween and Mother’s Day. During the Christmas holidays, the temperature is most often well below zero with several feet of snow on the ground. When the outside weather is cold and snowy, the air naturally becomes very dry. As we blast the furnace at maximum capacity, it pulls essential moisture out of the indoor air. The overly dry air then sucks moisture out of everything it touches, causing damage to wood furnishings, antiques, musical instruments and hardwood floors. My family complains of sore throats, headaches and itchy eyes. We all sneeze and cough more often and constantly get static shocks. Frizzy hair, chapped lips and dry skin are further problems caused by insufficient humidity. Plus, dry air feels cooler than properly moisturized air, which leads to higher thermostat settings and energy bills. We end up putting a bigger demand on the furnace and there’s a greater chance of malfunction. The solution is both simple and cost-effective. I invested in a whole-house humidifier. This type of air quality accessory installs right into the heating system yet operates independently. I’m able to customize moisture levels and operate the humidifier even when the furnace isn’t running. The humidifier has paid for itself by allowing lower thermostat settings. My home feels warmer and more comfortable. My whole family has fewer health complaints and I don’t need to worry over damage to home furnishings.