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“Does Dry Air Hurt My Furnace?”


You may have read here on our blog or heard us say that too much humidity hurts your air conditioner in the summer. The reasoning behind this is that the excess moisture makes you feel hotter in your home, which means you may adjust the thermostat so your AC will cycle on and cool your home faster. This practice wears down on the air conditioner, making it more likely that repair needs will occur and shortening the systems’ lifespan.

The answer, in this case, is having a dehumidifier professionally installed—this will cut down on the humidity levels, which should be between 30% to 50%, and allow you to use your air conditioner more efficiently and effectively.

So now you may be wondering, if humid air hurts your cooling system, does dry air hurt your furnace? Read on!

Humid Air Retains Heat

The fact of the matter is, humid air retains heat better than dry air can. So, the cold air of winter doesn’t maintain humidity, and we end up feeling very dry. This is uncomfortable for us—but does it hurt your furnace?

It doesn’t hurt your furnace, but it certainly doesn’t help your furnace, either! Just like with an air conditioner, you may adjust your furnaces thermostat to compensate for the chill you feel, but the truth is you simply need a whole-house humidifier!

The Benefits of a Whole-House Humidifier Installation

A whole-house humidifier is beneficial to your household in a number of ways. Mainly, it helps keep you more comfortable and healthy. Sure, you can invest in a portable humidification system, but this won’t be as effective.

And yes, a whole-house system is good for your forced-air heating system. Since increased humidity makes it seem warmer in your home, as we explained above, you won’t have to set your thermostat as high in the winter. As a result, your heater doesn’t have to work as hard, so it’s not expending as much energy—this results in lower heating costs for you! Plus, if you have your heater regularly maintained on top of this, you can count on your furnace lasting its entire estimated service life.

Dry Air and Your Health

Let’s not forget the effects that dry air has on your comfort and health, which we alluded to above. Air that’s too dry leads to the drying out of everything it is exposed to, leaving you with symptoms like chapped lips, flaky and itchy skin, frequent coughing and sore throats, and even illness due to dried out mucous membranes.

Dry Air and Your Home

Plus, you and your heater aren’t alone in your suffering—dry air also leads to splitting wooden floorboards in your home, cracks in wooden furniture, damage to electronics due to static shock, chipping paint, and splitting wallpaper.

Just like too much humidity can lead to costly home renovations such as mold removal or fixing rotting floorboards and drywall, too little humidity can hurt your property as well. Fortunately, you have a simple solution in the form of a whole-house humidifier. Please don’t hesitate to contact our team to learn more!

For a trustworthy Chicago HVAC company, look no further than Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning. Contact us today!

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