High humidity can not only make you feel really uncomfortable, it can also make you sick and cause damage to things in your home. But don’t buy too many thirsty hippos yet – too low humidity isn’t ideal either. In this manual we explain why and show you some solutions to balance the humidity in your house.
Why too much or too little humidity is not great
Humidity is essentially the amount of moisture in the air at any given time. Temperatures are often high here in Singapore, which helps keep water in the air. For this reason, there is always a high level of humidity.
In high humidity, our body cannot cool down quickly when sweating, as the high humidity prevents the moisture in our body from evaporating. This is the reason why we feel hotter in high humidity.
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Apart from the complaints, high humidity also provides a favorable environment for breeding all types of allergens such as mold, mildew and dust mites. These can lead to allergies and respiratory problems and are harmful to health, but can also damage things in our house.
While high humidity is bad, low humidity is not great either, although this is not often an urgent problem in Singapore. When the humidity is low, viruses such as the flu often survive longer. The dry air can also cause other physical health problems, including itchy and dry skin, dry throat and eyes, and dry nasal passages, which can worsen respiratory problems.
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Low humidity is similarly detrimental to furniture and furniture at home and can also lead to an increase in static electricity. The little bumps you sometimes get on door knobs? Yes, low humidity.
Signs that your home is too damp or too dry
Things at home that are particularly sensitive to moisture
Wine bottles: The best humidity for storing wine is between 60 and 80 percent. Too high and your bottle labels will be damaged. Too low and your corks will dry out, let the air in and leave damaged wine. A wine cooler with moisture regulation makes it easier to store your wine bottles.
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Leather bags: Best kept at a humidity of 50 to 55 percent. If you keep them in areas with too high humidity, they will be damaged over time, while if the humidity is too low, the leather will dry out and crack. Make sure you air your bags by taking them out of storage every few months.
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Camera and lenses: In environments with high humidity, problems with fungi can occur with cameras and lenses that are not stored properly and are not used for a long time. You want to store them in a humidity between 45 and 50 percent. Consider investing in a drying cabinet to make storage less stressful.
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Artwork: For valuable works of art, you should keep the air humidity at around 60 percent. Display them in areas where humidity is generally compatible with minor fluctuations. If you turn on your air conditioner for a few hours a day, your artwork will also be preserved.
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Musical instruments: Wooden instruments are particularly susceptible to moisture. Often, the wrong humidity can cause cracks, playability issues, and tuning issues. Keep the humidity between 40 and 60 percent.
How can you find a balance in the humidity at home?
1. First determine the air humidity at home with a hygrometer: A hygrometer is an instrument that you can use to measure humidity. It may sound like an industrial quality instrument, but places like Muji carry it. You want to use it to measure the humidity in different places at home because not all areas have the same humidity. A good healthy range is between 45 and 50 percent.
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2nd Ventilation is the key: If your house is excessively damp, make sure you keep your house ventilated by opening your windows and doors and using fans. Areas like your bathroom and kitchen are also more prone to high humidity. Therefore, you should use an exhaust fan to quickly remove excess moisture.
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3rd Use plants: There are some plants that actually help lower humidity at home by absorbing humidity. These include the peace lily, English ivy and Boston fern. If you don’t have green fingers, consider the easy-care tillandsia (air plant).
4th What to do if the humidity is too low?: In the event that there are areas in your home where the humidity is too low – not very likely in humid Singapore – you should invest in a humidifier. This is also a good option for areas in the house that are constantly exposed to air conditioning.
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5. Get a dehumidifier for very damp rooms: In areas of the house where you cannot remove excess moisture by ventilating or turning on the air conditioner, you may want to invest in a dehumidifier. Depending on the need and space, there are different types, some of which also serve as dryers and air purifiers. Thirsty hippos or chargeable and portable dehumidifiers are sufficient for smaller areas such as your closet.
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