Is your home cold in winter? Do you know why? Maybe it’s your Imagination!

Understanding how your body works can help you understand why you feel cold in your home. There are a few areas that affect how comfortable you are inside your home. They are air temperature, air movement and humidity.  A comfortable room temperature in the summer is around 75 degrees F. In the winter heating season a comfortable temperature is closer to 68 degrees F.

If your home is drafty you are going to feel chilled. Older homes in particular are often drafty as they lacked the vapour barrier that is designed to control moisture and air movement.  If you know where the drafts are and can control them you will feel more comfortable and use less fuel to stay warm. Having a thermal scan of a drafty home is recommended as one way to find the air leaks. Visit http://www.borderhi.com/thermal-imaging/ for more info on this.

The last and most misunderstood part of our human comfort that we need to look at is humidity. We all know how sticky it is when it is warm out and the humidity is high. We don’t notice low humidity nearly so much. In general our bodies feel most comfortable in the following conditions. In winter it is best if the humidity can be kept to between 20 – 40%. In the summer humidity should be kept below 60%. If the humidity falls below 15% your health may begin to be affected.  Humidity over 75% will also have negative affects on your body.

Most of the homes I inspect have humidifiers attached to the furnace which do not work. I personally do not like these systems as they require a lot of maintenance and without constant attention can cause leaking onto the furnace heat exchanger and plenum. If you feel uncomfortable in your home take the time to learn the conditions of your home and how you can make those conditions better for your lifestyle.

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