How to Measure Humidity

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Humidity is the amount of water vapor or moisture that is in the air. Even though though too much of it can create a stuffy environment, we still need it for comfort and health. Too much humidity or not enough humidity can also cause serious complications. If there is too much humidity, mold can become a risk. On the other hand, not enough humidity causes breathing problems, and static and sparks in your home. In order to keep a close eye on how much humidity is in your home, the best device to use is a hygrometer.

Things You'll Need

  • Hygrometer (electronic or mechanical)
  • Purchase a mechanical or electronic hygrometer at any local hardware store. In order to make sure your hygrometer is ready for use, make sure it is calibrated. You can find the steps to do this in your instructions manual. Once the hygrometer is ready for use, place it in the room where you would like to measure the humidity. One of the advantages of the hygrometer is that it can be transported from room to room, so its placement and location are never permanent.

  • Leave the hygrometer alone for two hours; this will give it enough time to measure the humidity in the room. After two hours, come back to the room and check the results. Electronic hygrometers give a digital readout of the percentage of humidity, as well as the words "comfortable," "wet" or "dry."

  • Look for the arrow on mechanical hygrometers. It will point to a number that ranges from 0 to 100. This number is the approximate percentage of humidity that the device picked up on. An ideal percentage is 50-55 inside your home. If the numbers are too high or too low, consider taking action in balancing the humidity in your home.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you find that the humidity in your home is too high or too low, purchase a dehumidifier for the summer or a humidifier for the winter.
  • Never put your hygrometer near heat sources such as furnaces, fireplaces or stoves.

References

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