Humidity is required in a home when the season changes to fall, winter and spring. The addition of humidity is required primarily for human comforts, but will also protect wood furnishings from drying out or cracking and artwork (should you have any Rembrants’ or Pcassos’). The reason for adding humidity is that the colder air that enters your home to replace air that has been exhausted could be saturated or containing as high as 100% humidity, but the 100% is only RELATIVE to that temperature. When colder, humid air is heated for human comfort the relative humidity drops significantly. The RH or relative humidity at the higher temperature could be as low as 20% (equal to the Sahara Desert). This degree of dryness can cause dry throats, static shocks with every touch of a door handle and some people even get nose bleeds. Many don’t realize that you can “feel” more comfortable at a lower temperature than normal if the humidity is properly adjusted. During the summertime your air conditioning system removes excess humidity. Without trying to be cliché… It’s not the heat, but the humidity. There are many ways to add humidity to the air in a home. There are evaporative humidifiers, atomizing type humidifiers and steam humidifiers. If you are into ecology and saving the planet you can maintain comfortable levels of humidity in your home by leaving off your range hood while boiling any foods on the stove, leaving the bath water in the tub until the water is cold, leaving the bathroom fan off while showering, reducing the amount of exhaust from the home and making sure your indoor plants are well watered. Many of us that want to save energy lower the temperature at night time and create more problems with humidity than you may realize. Overnight, when the temperature is lowered, the humidity in the house adjusts to the lower setting and before you rise the furnace comes on with a blast of heat causing the RH to drop like a stone. Your humidifier cannot react or keep up with the sudden change in temperature and you wake to sore throats and bleeding noses. Either reduce the degree of setback or maintain a constant temperature in your home and the problem is solved. There is more description in the Learn About section of our site under the General heading and sub title, Humidification.