Product Education   |   July 20, 2020

Effective Virus Protection Through Humidity Control

For basement and crawl space professionals, the quality of air in those spaces is not something considered when compared to encapsulation, or more direct means of removing pests, for example. But no matter how little your customers think about it, the air in their basements and crawl spaces is the same air they breathe in their living spaces. That’s why it’s important for you to consider installing high-efficiency dehumidifiers in these spaces to consistently control excess moisture and create an ideal indoor humidity level and healthy air for your customers to breathe.

 

The importance of maintaining a high level of air quality in basements and crawl spaces has a large impact on the air quality in homes. Keeping the relative humidity in these spaces at 50 percent is especially effective at reducing airborne viruses, as well as reducing issues homeowners can readily feel, like dry skin and scratchy throats. Through everyday activities like showering and washing the dishes, most homes put 25 pounds of moisture in to the air. That moisture has to go somewhere and in newer homes with reduced ventilation, it doesn’t go anywhere. This figure of 25 added pounds of moisture per day doesn’t account for moisture found in untreated or unfinished areas. Without a proper method of moisture control in any part of the house, viruses, mold, and mildew can flourish throughout the home.

 

ideal indoor humidity

Asthma, Allergies, and Airborne Viruses

Bacteria and airborne viruses love air that’s either too dry or too moist. Maintaining a relative humidity of 50 percent reduces the amount of viable airborne viruses to less than 1 percent. COVID-19 belongs to the same family as the flu and common cold, and maintaining proper humidity can reduce the risk of transmission and proliferation of these airborne viruses. According to the US National Library of Medicine, National Institute of Health, it only takes two days to reduce the amount of airborne viruses to the aforementioned figure of less than 1 percent. In addition to viruses, dehumidification also significantly lowers allergy and asthma triggers such as dust mites, mold, and mildew. Not only does a dehumidifier remove excess moisture in a space, but it creates healthy, breathable air.

 

ideal humidity level

Polluted Indoor Air is a Risk Factor

The EPA estimates that the air inside our homes is up to 5 times more polluted than the air inside our homes due to poor ventilation, dust, mold, mildew, and uncontrolled humidity. All of these factors trigger respiratory infections, allergic reactions, asthma, and as mentioned, allow viruses to thrive. Whether in the basement or the crawl space, the factors listed above are all present and can all be mitigated through dehumidification.

 

By quoting and installing Aprilaire Dehumidifiers, you can set the relative humidity in your customers’ basements and crawl spaces at 50% to effectively protect them against viruses and create healthy air from the ground up.