How to Reduce the Humidity in your Home

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Today on homify we are going to be taking a look at how to reduce household humidity. But why should one be concerned with an increase in humidity in the home? Humidity is one of the main causes of condensation within domestic spaces, which can compromise the health and comfort of its occupants. Additionally, condensation can damage interior finishes, raise the cost of utilities, and increase the maintenance within a residence. If your home feels as though it is a sauna, full of wet steam, or if you are constantly sweating, you undoubtedly have a humidity problem. 

Air naturally contains water vapour, with the volume directly depending on the ambient temperature within the home. Here in Hong Kong the humidity can vary greatly depending on the season. Winter generally experiences lower humidity than the summer months, when the percentage can reach unbearable heights that hover around the 90 percent mark. In order to feel comfortable and healthy in your home, you will want to ensure the interior humidity of your dwelling is between 30 to 50 percent, with an ideal level of 45 percent. During the hotter months this may be almost impossible to achieve, but it is possible to lower the level to ensure a more comfortable ambience and atmosphere.

If you would like some assistance in reducing your domestic humidity, check out the hints below, and safeguard your dwelling against damaging and uncomfortable water vapour today!

Ventilate!

Is your skin feeling clammy? Do you have foggy windows, or perhaps smell mildew? If any of these things ring true in your household, you could possibly have a humidity problem. If you have had a humidity issue for a while, you will be able to spot the tell-tale signs within your dwelling. Mould, mildew, rotting timber and damp patches on the walls and ceiling are a giveaway. And what is the best way to deal with your humidity woes? Well, the answer is to ventilate.

The first point of call for any humidity dilemma in a home is to consider your ventilation. Areas such as the kitchen, bathroom and utility room are notorious rooms that harbour heat and moisture. Cooking in the kitchen produces steam, while taking long hot showers is another steam producing activity. In addition, the use of a dryer can easily create a humidity issue for the whole home.

The best way to combat this is to install ventilation fans, or ensure you have a window that can be opened during these times. Unfortunately, kitchens tend to be located in areas where windows don’t have a large enough impact, and an exhaust fan with additional ventilation is the ideal answer. Consider your budget and choose something that suits the size of your abode. If you are unsure about the particular requirements, chat to a professional to ensure you get exactly what you need.

Choose (the right) house plants

House plants can be used to help home humidity, however they need to be utilised in moderation. They can keep your home cooler, as they reduce the overall heat within a room. When adding plants to a room you must also be careful of how long they are left. 

Plants naturally release moisture and mist into the air, and when added in bulk can significantly alter the humidity in a room. Over-watering is another consideration, as excess water will turn into vapour and contribute to the room’s mugginess.

Insulate…

Insulating your home correctly is an important step towards a home with comfortable humidity levels. Insulation can prevent excess water from the natural environment entering your residence, and can also help your air-conditioner, reducing its workload by keeping cool air in and hot air out. 

Insulation will reduce energy bills, and help to keep your dwelling airtight, which is extremely important in cities that experience high levels of humidity.  Speak to a professional about insulating your home, as it is often a fairly involved process, and more than the average DIYer can take on. Moreover, it is important to remember that many governments have strict regulations regarding insualtion, and this is more often than not, better handled by an expert. 

Consider installing humidity sensors

If you need to take drastic action and simply opening a window isn't enough, you may want to consider humidity sensors in your home. Sensors are perfect for detecting a rise in humidity, and are perfect for those individuals who are particularly sensitive to their surrounds and the air quality in their home. So what does a humidity sensor actually do? They will tell you the source of the humidity within your home along with real time readings that will allow you to take action against the issue. Simple, small, and inoffensive to your décor, a humidity sensor will easily blend in to any interior aesthetic or design. However it will only alert you to the problem, which you will then have to rectify.

Install an air-conditioning system

 Bedroom by Living in Space
Living in Space

Buckland Crescent

Living in Space

Living in Hong Kong you naturally get used to the humidity, however an air-conditioner can greatly improve your day to day life. Air-conditioners create cooler dryer air, and in turn reduce the moisture in your home’s atmosphere. 

You will want to choose a reverse ducted system if possible, as this is one of the best options for constant replacement of humid air, for cooler dryer air. Evaporative air-conditioners can produce a nice cooling effect, but will not substantially reduce the humidity. Check out the options and what your budget will permit, and chat to a professional if need be.

Consider some natural options

classic Bedroom by 4D Studio Architects and Interior Designers
4D Studio Architects and Interior Designers

Historic House, Notting Hill, London

4D Studio Architects and Interior Designers

As well as the aforementioned possibilities, there are also simple, natural alternatives that can help reduce the humidity in your home. If you are environmentally minded, you may want to consider taking colder, shorter showers. This doesn’t tend to be a problem when living in Hong Kong where the humidity can reach unbearable heights, and cooler showers are often a refreshing alternative. Additionally, instead of using dryers or drying clothing inside, use outdoor clotheslines. This will help remove the level of water in the air, and in turn reduce the humidity.

If you are in a position where you might be able to renovate your home, consider adding windows to your dwelling. Windows are perfect for bringing natural air inside, and provided it isn’t too humid outdoors, can help to dry out the interior of your abode.

If you would like to continue reading, check out some more domestic inspiration here: Fight household mould in 5 easy (and natural) steps!

Do you have any tips for our Hong Kong community and living with humidity? We'd love to hear from you in the comments below!
modern Houses by Casas inHAUS

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