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May 12, 2016
In a majority of Maine’s older housing stock, high humidity levels through the winter months is hardly a concern. Dry winter air and drafty homes often result in very low humidity levels, which requires owners to pump moisture into their homes to avoid itchy skin and dry coughs.
But, as we build tighter homes or work on air sealing older ones, high humidity levels can become a issue, having negative health effects on you and your family. Wet basements and inadequate ventilation in bathrooms or kitchens can introduce a significant amount of moisture to the indoors. Some molds can begin growing in humidity levels as low as 55 percent, and at that point, and even sooner, you would want to start drawing moisture out of your home with a dehumidifier.
It is important to monitor the humidity levels in your home, which can be done easily by setting up a humidity meter. The ideal humidity level for comfort and health is in the upper 30 percent. But you won’t feel a significant difference if you keep your levels safe between 30 percent and 50 percent.
Phoebe C, Waterville
Bo, Thanks for your note. Nice to know you're thinking of me. I am very satisfied with everything you did. My oil consumption is down from the previous year, but I have not yet figured exactly what the numbers are. I will let you know. No water in my basement during the rain these past couple of days. Hopefully that will hold up during a heavy downpour. Stay well and enjoy these warming temperatures.