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The Benefits and Drawbacks of Air Humidifiers

Do you experience dry and itchy skin, sore throat, irritated eyes and chapped lips in the cold season? These are the effects of extremely low humidity levels inside your home. While putting plants inside and using lotions as added moisturizers can help lessen the damages, you can use a humidifier as a more effective solution to combat dry indoor air.

Humidifiers are proven effective in maintaining the right amount of moisture inside the home. However, there are also known problems that come along with its use. Here are some of the things you need to learn about using humidifiers:

Benefits of Humidifiers

  • Improved Health

Humidifiers help create an indoor environment that is less conducive for cold, flu, and other diseases. By adding moisture in the air, humidifiers make disease-causing microorganisms virtually ineffective, thus reducing the spread of illnesses inside your home. This is also the reason why humidifiers are widely-used in hospitals and other medical facilities.

  • Better Comfort

A humidifier can do wonders in boosting your comfort in the cold months. Aside from preventing health-related concerns, it also reduces the chances of static electricity. A spark of static can damage your electronics, and you are more likely to face expensive repair services for your appliances.

  • Savings

The added moisture can bring extra heat so you will feel warmer without depending too much on your HVAC system. With this, you can lower the thermostat setting by a degree or two and save money in the long cold months.

Drawbacks of Humidifiers

  • Breeding Ground For Bacteria and Fungi

There are known microorganisms that thrive in the dirty air humidifier filters and tanks such as the Legionella pneumophila which is the cause of Legionnaire’s disease. Be sure to clean your humidifiers regularly to prevent health-related issues.

  • Noise

All air humidifiers produce sounds during the operation, but the intensity of the noise most likely depends on the type of device installed.

  • Excessive Moisture

Humidifiers add moisture in the air, but these are not self-regulated devices. There are times that excessive amounts of moisture are given to your home. Luckily, humidifiers with humidistats or hygrometers are now available in the market. These are helpful devices that control the operation of your humidifier so that the right level of humidity is conserved.

Humidifiers are helpful devices once used and maintained properly. If you need one before the winter season arrives, feel free to talk to our professionals at Environmental Heating and Cooling. We can help you find the best device for your unique home. Give us a call now!


The Dangers of a Cracked Heat Exchanger

Have you noticed an odd chemical odor when you turn on your heating system? Does it smell like preservative or formaldehyde? Perhaps you might conclude that something near your unit gets too hot or someone has spilled a cleaning solution inside your home. You’ll be lucky if that is the case, but what if the problem already lies in your heat exchanger?

Is this something you need to take seriously? The simplest answer to that is YES! Read on and be guided about the dangers that a cracked heat exchanger can bring and what you can do about it.

What Causes Heat Exchangers To Crack?

There are three common reasons why heat exchangers get cracked. One is if your furnace is already on its last leg. After years of regular use, the components of your furnace may wear out and break. Your heat exchangers are not an exception to this condition.

Cracks may also develop for new units because of limited airflow. This happens when many of your registers are closed or blocked, your air filter is congested, or the air duct is obstructed with dirt and dust. Poor airflow allows pressure to build up inside the unit and causes the exchanger to crack.

Another common reason is an oversized furnace. If your furnace is too big for your home, it might turn on and off frequently. As a result, the heat exchanger constantly expands and contracts, which eventually leads to cracks.

What Danger Does A Cracked Heat Exchanger Present?

Furnaces produce dangerous gases as by-products of its operation. For safety purposes, these gases should be vented out of your home properly. However, with a cracked heat exchanger, these hazardous gases can leak out and pass through your home’s air supply. This is the reason why you smell chemical odors inside.

Another serious issue that a cracked heat exchanger may bring you is the danger of CO poisoning.  Carbon monoxide is referred to as a silent killer. Too much exposure to this can cause serious illnesses and even death.

What Should You Do About a Cracked Heat Exchanger?

First, be sure that your carbon monoxide detector is functioning properly. If it alarms, open your window for added ventilation, leave your home, and seek medical help immediately. If your CO detector is not yet alerting you to any danger but you suspect a crack in your heat exchanger, set an appointment to your trusted HVAC technician immediately for a proper solution.

 

When it comes to cracked heat exchangers, our experts at Environmental Heating and Cooling recommend you replace your entire furnace instead of replacing the heat exchanger only for it will give a less difference in the expenses. If you need a free estimate on a new unit, you can always give us a call!