If you’ve noticed high levels of relative humidity in your home, you’re not alone.
In fact, there are many cities throughout the U.S. that experience higher than normal humidity all year round with levels averaging above 72%. But not all humidity issues stem from the outdoor air. Some problems pop up due to poor ventilation inside the home.
The most common signs that indicate you may have an issue with humidity indoors are foggy windows, a musty odor, mold stains, and clammy skin. At the very least, these things can just be annoying, but if you don’t do something to fix the moisture problem, long-term exposure can be a hazard to your health in addition to damaging parts of your home.
And I bet you don’t want that!
As your trusty companion, I’ll show you some simple ways for how to reduce high humidity in a house that will also keep you safe.
If you follow the tips below, you’ll have a much easier time controlling humidity in your home and getting rid of the moisture buildup that’s causing it.
Open windows and doors
This first thing you can do to lower humidity indoors may seem like common sense, yet many people who struggle with this issue often overlook it.
Opening your windows and doors as much as you can and leaving them open for as long as possible is the best solution to start with.
Ventilating your home in this way for even just a few hours each day can greatly help to reduce your indoor humidity. When air is allowed to flow in and out of your house the moisture doesn’t become trapped and have a chance to accumulate.
Run the air conditioner
You may not know this but your home’s air conditioning system can actually lower the humidity inside the house.
When air is pulled into the system from your home’s interior, the hot air it collects is expelled outdoors, and cold air is returned in its place. During this process, moisture is also removed from the air in a passive manner, and this lowers the relative humidity.
If you’re noticing signs of heavy humidity indoors, try turning on the central air conditioning system so moisture doesn’t stay trapped inside your home. If you don’t have this type of cooling system, or just want to keep energy costs low, consider investing in a window air conditioner.
A window air conditioning unit operates in a similar manner to cool down your home and expels humidity to the outdoors. This option is cheap and very effective.
Run exhaust fans
On days when the moisture content is high outside, it often becomes more of a problem indoors as well.
A simple trick for how to reduce humidity inside is to run all of the exhaust fans throughout your house. The most common places for these fans are on the ceiling inside bathrooms and in the range hood above the stove in your kitchen.
Turning these exhaust fans on, even when you’re not bathing or cooking, will help suck water vapor out of the air and dump it outside. This method is a lot cheaper than running your air conditioning system as a way to lower humidity inside your home, but it’s not nearly as efficient. A combination of both tricks is a better way to go.
Another thing to keep in mind is that dirty exhausts fans don’t ventilate very well. If you’ve never taken a vacuum to the exhaust fan’s air vent on the ceiling inside your bathroom, now is a good time to do it. Over time, dust collects on the vent and clogs it up. So, it may sound like it’s working well, but in reality, it’s not doing a very effective job at all.
A similar thing goes for the range hood in your kitchen. If the grease filter is clogged up from years of use, it’s time to replace it. Otherwise, it won’t ventilate nearly as well as it should, if at all.
Put houseplants outside
If you have a lot of houseplants indoors, one of the easiest ways for controlling humidity in a room is to remove them.
While plants are lovely to look at and are great for purifying the atmosphere, they also release more water into the air than they absorb. This leads to higher relative humidity.
Depending on the number of plants you have in a room, the increased level of humidity can be quite noticeable. In fact, 90% of plants lose their water through transpiration from the leaves. Overwatering your plants can also make matters worse.
If possible, put your houseplants outdoors and try to enjoy them there. If you can’t do that, at the very least, move them to a well-ventilated room of the house during high humidity days.
A small change like this can provide more relief than you may expect.
Use a dehumidifier
If none of the above options are working for you, the next best thing you can do to control humidity inside a house is to use a dehumidifier.
A dehumidifier is a simple device that operates by pulling moisture out of the air and collecting it in a reservoir tank. Once the tank is full, all you have to do is empty it out and it’s ready to start working again.
Dehumidifiers come in all shapes and sizes, and range in price from $15 to $1,200 or more. However, most people find that they only need a small inexpensive product to meet their needs. The more expensive devices are mostly used for larger spaces like a warehouse so you don’t have to waste your time comparing them.
If you’re interested in learning more about how dehumidifiers work to make your home more comfortable, check out my best cheap dehumidifier reviews. That page goes over everything you need to know about buying the most affordable device for your home.
Regardless if you use a dehumidifier or not, the tips outlined on this page should help you gain better control over humidity inside your home. You can start small by just opening windows and doors more often to see if that does the trick or jump right into running your air conditioner and exhaust fans.