It's normal for the upper floors of a home to be hotter and more humid than the lower ones simply because hot air always rises up. When air heats up, it expands and becomes less dense.
Basements are often more humid than other rooms because moisture from the ground can seep through basement walls. If the humidity is over 50 percent or under 30 percent in one or more zones of your home, the following solutions will help you get your humidity levels in check.
If you put a moisture meter at the ceiling level, you'll find that the humidity is often much higher than at the floor level. Think of a helium balloon. Let it go and it goes straight up to the ceiling because helium is lighter than air.
The best place for a dehumidifier is close to the source of moisture. In case it's downstairs, then you would certainly want to keep the unit there. If you simply want to slightly lower the humidity level throughout the house, then it is recommended to place the device on the upper floor, close to the stairs.
Why Hot Air Rises and Has Higher Humidity. It's normal for the upper floors of a home to be hotter and more humid than the lower ones simply because hot air always rises up. When air heats up, it expands and becomes less dense. With less surrounding matter, the hot air rises.
While damp cannot be reduced by opening windows, it can help to reduce the humidity levels in your property to make sure that condensation is not a common occurrence.
The idea here is that as air becomes humid in a home, it becomes heavier, causing it to sink down into the crawl space and lower levels of the home. Therefore, ventilating the crawlspace with outside air will circulate this humid air out of the home and keep the space dry.
The Nature of Humidity
It is actually quite normal for the second floor of a home to be more humid than the first. If the indoor air becomes warm, it has a higher level of moisture. This means it has a higher level of humidity. The humid air is actually less dense than that of dryer air.
You want to place your machine in an area where there is good air circulation so the unit can efficiently work. We do not recommend placing a dehumidifier directly against a wall or piece of furniture. Instead, put it at least six inches away from these vent-blocking surfaces.
Best Humidity for Sleeping
The best relative humidity for sleeping and other indoor activities has been debated. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the best indoor relative humidity falls between 30% and 50%, and it should never exceed 60%. Other studies suggest 40% to 60% is a better range.
It is better to open a few windows a little throughout the whole house. This helps the air to move through the house. One window open wide in one room may not be as effective. Try to do this as often as possible (2-3 times a week), but keep windows closed on wet days as damp air may increase indoor humidity.
The Health and Safety Executive recommends that relative humidity indoors should be maintained at 40-70%, while other experts recommend that the range should be 30-60%. Most people find 30-60% most comfortable and this is the level that Airthings recommends.
Comfortable levels of humidity range between 30% and 60%, however, the ideal humidity level, according to ASHRAE, is between 45% and 55%. Anything above 55% is considered to be high.
High humidity in a house can be caused by many things, but the biggest reason is poor ventilation—in other words, air isn't being circulated properly, which causes the air in your house to become stagnant and humid. The other major reason? Too much air exchange with the outside.
The ideal relative humidity for health and comfort is somewhere between 30-50% humidity, according to the Mayo Clinic. This means that the air holds between 30-50% of the maximum amount of moisture it can contain.
Water vapor can move through walls, ceilings, and floors (the building envelope) of a home in following two ways: Air Infiltration: Moisture can be carried by air that transports it through holes or gaps in the built structure of a home. A great deal of moisture can be carried by such infiltration.
As the name implies, this can treat an entire house. They can be standalone in the basement, or they can be installed into your duct system. The Aprilaire 1850 Dehumidifier, for instance, can remove up to 11.9 gallons of water per day.
A home should have a relative humidity of 30% to 60%. Above 60% and you have what's considered “high” humidity. Besides being less comfortable, high humidity causes a host of other problems in your home, including: Growth of fungus and mold in various parts of the home.
Experts generally agree that the ideal indoor humidity levels for comfort and for avoiding health effects are between 35 and 60 percent. When you're spending time in a home or workplace with humidity levels in excess of 60 percent, it's increasingly likely that you will experience certain health issues.
When the weather outside is cold, the air is usually dry. Opening the window during dry, cold weather will reduce humidity levels inside the home or office and would be counter-productive. Keep the windows closed during cold weather and use a humidifier to keep humidity levels optimal.
Can I leave the dehumidifier running at night? Yes, we recommend using a dehumidifier 24hrs, however, be aware that there will always be a noise generated from the machine when it is operating.
Carpets and other porous surfaces can maintain elevated moisture levels long after the relative humidity in a room has gone down.