A dirty air filter is the #1 reason for HVAC system failure. A dirty filter restricts the air flow into your HVAC systems air handler. This restricted air flow places additional strain on the air handler fan motor and could, over time, burn out the motor and cause your system to overheat and ultimately fail.
Stuffy air can sometimes indicate that a room is retaining moisture in the walls, ceilings, or floors. This is very bad for the health of your home; when moisture goes untreated it breeds mold and mildew, which produces an unpleasant odor.
You probably don’t really care about the scientific causes of condensation; you just want to get rid of it! In addition to possibly damaging your house, it’s not any fun to have to peer through hazy windows just to get a peek at what’s going on outside of your home. Fortunately, there are a number of things that you can do to reduce condensation on your windows.
Interior condensation, or the condensation that occurs on the inside of your windows, is the most common type, and there are a variety of things you can do to remedy the problem.
1. Turn Down the Humidifier
You might notice condensation in your bathroom, kitchen, or nursery. In the nursery this problem is often caused by a humidifier, which many parents use. If you use a humidifier in any part of your home (including the humidifier that works with some furnaces), you can try turning it down. As a result, the humidifier will release less moisture into the air, which will hopefully reduce condensation.
2. Buy a Moisture Eliminator
If you suspect that there is excess moisture in certain areas of your home, you can purchase a moisture eliminating product, such as DampRid. These products often come in buckets that you can set on your floor or in bags that you can hang, typically in your closet. You can use these products in your bathrooms, kitchen, or closets (where they will also help protect your clothing from moisture damage), and they will remove excess moisture from the air.
3. Bathroom and Kitchen Fans
Use your bathroom and kitchen fans every time you cook or shower. Showering and cooking releases a lot of moisture into the air, and sometimes this moisture cannot escape from your house easily. The exhaust fans in your kitchen and your bathroom help remove this moisture from the air. You want to run the fans for about 15 to 20 minutes after you shower or cook.
4. Circulate the Air
Circulating the air can also help reduce the condensation on your windows. So, use your ceiling fans even in the winter. You want the fans to rotate in a clockwise direction to push warm air off of the ceiling back down to the floor.
5. Open Your Windows
If it isn’t too cold, you can open your windows. This will release some of the warm, moist air that is trapped in the house.
6. Raise the Temperature
Raising the temperature of the windows will reduce the condensation on them. Condensation occurs when warm air hits a cold surface (the window). Think about taking a cold drink out of your fridge on a warm day. The surface of the can immediately gets wet. In order to raise the temperature of your windows, you can raise the temperature of the house slightly. You can also use blinds, curtains, or drapes to raise the window temperature as well.
7. Add Weather Stripping
Adding weather stripping to your windows can help keep warm air from leaving your home. This can help reduce condensation if you’re using storm windows during the winter months. Weather stripping also helps make your home more energy efficient.
8. Use Storm Windows
If you have older windows in your home, using storm windows during the winter months can help reduce condensation on your interior windows. The space between the two windows allows the interior window to stay warmer. Storm windows can also help reduce your heating bills during the winter. While storm windows themselves can sometimes have condensation, they do reduce the condensation on the interior windows, which helps reduce frost buildup. Condensation on the storm windows often indicates a leak in your interior windows, and you will want to check and/or reapply your weather stripping.
9. Move Your Plants
Plants release moisture into the air, so if you have a number of plants by your windows, moving them to a different place can help reduce condensation on the windows.
10. Buy a Dehumidifier
Purchasing a dehumidifier is an easy, expensive way, to remove the moisture in your home. If a full size dehumidifier, which is usually $200 to $300, is too expensive for you, you can also look into purchasing a mini dehumidifier. Some dehumidifiers will need to be turned on and off, while others will come on automatically when the humidity level in the home reaches a certain point.
11. Air to Air Exchanger
An air to air exchanger is another fairly easy, yet expensive, way to reduce moisture, and therefore condensation, in your home. An air to air exchanger brings in fresh air from the outside and sends indoor air to the outside. These machines remove pollutants from your home as well as removing the moisture.
12. Window Insulation Kits
Window insulation kits can be installed on the inside or the outside of windows, and they can prevent interior condensation when installed on the inside. When installed on the outside, they can help reduce energy costs, but they do not reduce condensation. Additionally, if you have condensation between an interior window and a storm window, sealing the interior window can help reduce this problem. These kits have the added benefit of reducing your heating and cooling bills.
It’s better to keep doors closed for the area you want heated.
Radiators, electric panel heaters and convection heaters all work by creating a convection current in a room. As hot air rises, it circles around to the other side of the room, cools and sinks and travels back along the floor to the heater to be reheated again.
Closing doors makes sure this current remains within the designated space.
An airer is better because tumble dryers use a lot of energy. Try timing it so you put your washing out on a clothes horse during the hours your heating comes on. Drying your clothes indoors on an airer can cause problems with condensation and damp, especially in old and poorly-insulated homes, so it is best to dry your clothes outdoors whenever the weather allows.