Beat the Cold, Dry Winter Air With a Whole-Home Humidifier!

Three Ways Homeowners Can Benefit from a Humidifier This Winter

Winter is in full swing, and for many folks, it’s time to stock up on lotion, tissues, and peppermint tea to combat the dry skin, runny noses, and aggravated sinuses that the colder weather brings. But instead of treating the symptoms, it may be better to go after the underlying cause of all that discomfort – that’s where humidifiers come in. 

Winter air can be harsh, cold, and dry, sapping moisture from wherever it can – including skin, respiratory systems, and even houseplants. But by adding a little water vapor to the home’s indoor air with the help of a humidifier, homeowners can keep that precious moisture where it belongs. This article will discuss a few of the negative effects of low humidity levels and how humidifiers can help prevent them!

Better Respiratory Health

benefitsThe air tends to be so dry in winter because colder air can’t hold as much water vapor as warm air. And when that dry air is breathed in, it dries out the mucous membranes in the nose, throat, and sinuses. These membranes are responsible for capturing bacteria and other particles before they can enter the lower respiratory system (namely, the lungs) – but when they’re dry and chapped, they can’t do their job effectively. This is partly why the common cold, flu, and other respiratory illnesses are so prevalent in the colder months.

But dry air doesn’t just make it harder for the body to defend against harmful particles; it also irritates in the form of nosebleeds, coughing, sore throat, and congestion. Low humidity can also exacerbate asthma, allergies, bronchitis, COPD, and other breathing issues.

By raising the home’s humidity levels with the help of a humidifier, homeowners can get some relief from the issues – at least when they’re at home. The membranes in their respiratory systems will have adequate moisture to trap harmful particles and keep the respiratory passageways from drying out, resulting in a healthier, more comfortable winter!

Improved Skincare

Just as dry, cold air saps moisture from the respiratory system, so does it draw moisture out of the skin. Most people have experienced dry hands and chapped lips during the winter, but this issue can be extremely uncomfortable or even painful for some. Particularly dry skin can start to crack and bleed, exposing the skin to the risk of bacterial infection. Even existing conditions like eczema and acne can become amplified in low humidity. 

Of course, hydrating and applying moisturizer regularly can help the situation. Still, this kind of skincare regimen isn’t always practical – and for many, it can feel like an uphill battle. But with more moisture in the home’s air, homeowners will lose less water through the skin and enjoy the winter months without being plagued by dry, itchy skin!

Healthier Indoor Plants

plantsMaintaining a healthy humidity level in the home isn’t just important for the health of the people living there but also for the health of the indoor plants. Plants rely on moisture, oxygen, and light to produce food for growth (photosynthesis). But they don’t just derive moisture from the soil they’re planted in – they also extract it from the air. But if the air is too dry, the opposite will occur; the air will extract water from the plant’s leaves, just as it does from the skin. 

With so little moisture in the air, the plant will begin to wilt and die. Of course, homeowners can try to water it more, but mold or fungus can take hold if the soil is constantly soggy. It can be a delicate balance to strike, but keeping the home at a reasonable humidity level makes it much easier! Fortunately, most houseplants thrive at around the same relative humidity as humans need for ideal health – typically around 40-60%. If homeowners are unsure of their home’s current humidity level but are experiencing the symptoms of dry air, they would do well to ask their local HVAC specialist about installing a humidifier!

About A New Image Heating & Cooling

A New Image Heating & Cooling has proudly served Warrensville Heights and the Greater Cleveland area since 1990. They offer same-day service, a 100% satisfaction guarantee, and a money-saving membership plan. Their punctual and trustworthy technicians are licensed, insured, and available for emergencies 24/7, so homeowners know they’re in great hands when they call A New Image for indoor air quality services and humidifier installation in Warrensville Heights, OH!

Heat Your Home More Efficiently This Winter!

Heat Pumps Make It Easier (and Cheaper) To Heat the Home

Nothing beats coming home to a nice, warm house and cozying up with the family on a cold winter’s day. And to ensure the house stays comfortably toasty all winter, it’s essential to have a reliable home heating system – as nice as a roaring fire may be, it probably won’t cut it for most homes.

Many homes use furnaces or boilers that run on natural gas, oil, or electricity. While these are all effective options for heating a home, there’s another type of heating system to consider: heat pumps. This article will discuss the different kinds of heat pumps on the market, how they work, and how they can improve energy efficiency and save homeowners money on their heating bills!

What Are Heat Pumps – And How Do They Work?

heat pumpUnlike furnaces or heaters, which produce heat using a fuel source, heat pumps draw heat from one environment and move it to another. This is done using two units – one inside the home and one outside. The outdoor unit captures heat energy from the surrounding environment using chemical refrigerant pumped to the indoor unit, releasing the captured heat into the home via metal condenser coils.

This is the same technology that air conditioners use to keep homes cool – only in reverse. Most heat pumps can switch between heating and cooling, so homeowners don’t have to rely on multiple HVAC systems between seasons.

There are a few different types of heat pumps available for residential use. The most common are air-source heat pumps, which derive heat energy from the outdoor air (even on frigid days!). Geothermal heat pumps, on the other hand, can pull heat from water or the earth itself. Water source heat pumps capture heat energy from a body of water such as a lake or reservoir. Since most people don’t have access to such a water source, these are far less common. Ground source heat pumps, which extract thermal energy from deep underground, are becoming more and more common in residential settings.

Ductless Heat Pumps

Another type of heat pump that’s grown in popularity is the ductless mini-split heat pump. Whereas central heat pump systems distribute heated air through the home’s air ducts from one large indoor unit, mini-split systems involve multiple smaller units installed throughout the home, which pump warm air directly into a given room.

Ductless heat systems tend to be significantly more energy efficient than central heating systems, mainly because homeowners can heat individual rooms rather than using energy to heat the entire house. This greater zone control is one of the key benefits for many homeowners since everyone in the home can enjoy a comfortable temperature without fighting over the thermostat. Mini-split heat pumps are much simpler to install in homes without existing ductwork. This also makes them ideal for house extensions, added rooms, or insulated garages.

Greater Energy Efficiency = Lower Billssaving

No matter which variation homeowners choose, the greatest benefit of heat pump systems is their energy efficiency. Thanks to transferring heat rather than generating it outright, heat pumps can be as much as three times more efficient than traditional electric heating systems. And since they are also effective at cooling the home in the warmer months, heat pumps eliminate the need for a separate furnace and AC.

And since HVAC systems are the single biggest source of energy consumption in a typical home, upgrading to a high-efficiency heat pump can save homeowners loads of money on their utility bills. Some types, such as ductless and geothermal heating systems, often come with a higher upfront cost but can save homeowners more in the long run, making them a worthwhile investment. 

Of course, every home is different, so homeowners would consult their local HVAC company to determine which type of heat pump will best suit their needs!

About A New Image Heating & Cooling

A New Image Heating & Cooling has proudly served Warrensville Heights and the Greater Cleveland Metro area since 1990. Their licensed, insured, and pet-friendly technicians always show up on time and provide personalized recommendations, up-front pricing, and 5-star customer service. A New Image offers same-day and 24/7 emergency service, so homeowners can get fast, expert service when they need it most – so call them anytime for heat pump installation in Warrensville Heights, OH!