Month: June 2018

Humidity Levels in Your House

Humidity Levels in Your House

Have you ever worried your home may be too humid? A typical home in Florida should have a humidity level somewhere between 25 to 50 percent. If your home’s humidity level it too high or too low, your family, yourself, your wallet, and your home may be at risk for some unpleasant and damaging consequences.

 

High humidity levels can affect your overall health. Pollutants such as mold, bacteria, and fungi can cause symptoms such as sneezing, nasal congestion, coughing, throat irritation, and watery eyes. These pollutants can also be toxic and can cause more severe responses such as asthma attacks and allergic reactions. Not only is high humidity in your house an issue, but if your humidity levels are too low, it can lead to problems like nosebleeds, skin irritations, and breathing difficulties.

As far as your wallet and home go, inappropriate humidity levels can cause your home to feel hotter than it actually is. Naturally, you will be bumping that thermostat lower and lower, which will increase your utility bill. Excessive moisture can cause damage to the structure of your house. It can damage drywall and wood fixtures in your home causing them to rot, mold, or warp overtime.

Hygrometer

If you’re unsure about your home’s humidity levels, you can purchase a hygrometer. This is an instrument that allows you to measure your home’s humidity levels. If the hygrometer tells you that the humidity level in your house is not in the ideal range, a humidifier or a dehumidifier will be the starting solution to this issue.

Humidifiers are used when the humidity levels are too low in your house. They come in both portable units that can be moved from room to room or you can purchase a humidistat (or hydrostat). A humidistat will monitor your home’s levels and if it drops too low, the humidistat will help restore and sustain the desired humidity level.  Dehumidifiers are used to help with humidity levels that are too high. Dehumidistats are devices that detect the moisture level of air in your home. They will be set to an optimal humidity range and when the humidity rises above that range, the dehumidistat will automatically turn on and get the levels back to the normal range.

 

If you are having issues with your humidity levels in your home, give Benson’s Heating & Air Conditioning a call today! We will come out to evaluate the problem and recommend the best way to fix it!

Tips to Prepare HVAC Units for Hurricanes & Stormy Weather

Tips to Prepare HVAC Units for Hurricanes & Stormy Weather

Hurricane season is no stranger to us here in Florida. We all probably have a checklist that we go through annually as June approaches that reminds us of the basic preparations that need to be made and what items we need to stock up on in order to survive hurricane season. One thing you may not have thought to add to that checklist is to make sure your home HVAC system is prepared for the storm. Not only does preparing your HVAC system for a storm important to help reduce the likelihood for any damage to the system, but it also helps keep you and your family safe.

Since hurricanes and large thunderstorms bring on high probabilities of power outages, the first thing we recommend doing when bad weather is heading your way is to cool your home before the storm hits. Turn your AC down a few degrees lower than you normally keep it and keep all of the blinds, doors, and windows closed as much as possible. As the storm gets closer, turn off the electricity or unplug your unit altogether in order to prevent damage through electrical surges from lightning strikes.

Another important step when preparing your AC Unit for hurricanes and stormy weather is to secure your outdoor unit by checking to make sure all of the bolts are tightened on the unit. Due to the high winds of these storms, AC units can be easily lifted. Making sure your unit is strapped down with hurricane or condenser straps is recommended to avoid this. If you feel that flooding will be a threat from the storm headed your way, it may be necessary to elevate your unit slightly higher than it normally sits to avoid water damage.

Lastly, make sure to bring in or secure any outdoor equipment that could fly away. Also, be sure to cover your AC unit with a tarp or plywood to protect it from flying debris like tree limbs, branches, or any other potentially hazardous objects in your nearby area. Remember, just because you’ve prepped your yard for a hurricane, does not mean your neighbor has.

After the storm, the main thing to remember is that you should not turn your air conditioning back on until you have assessed your AC unit for damage from high winds, water, or debris. If you have found any damage or you are unsure if there is a problem, call Benson’s Heating & Air Conditioning and we’ll be happy to come out and inspect and repair any damage to your unit!