Along with the cold and the snow, winter brings with it another annual scourge: flu season. Winter conditions make it easier for the flu virus to spread, but you can limit the opportunities for the flu to knock you out this year by increasing your indoor humidity levels with a whole-house humidifier.
Winter air is normally much drier than summer air. Inside your home, the addition of the warm, dry air coming from your heating system reduces humidity even more. Dry indoor air produces several uncomfortable physical conditions, notably dry mouths, noses, and throats.
Experts in virology and disease transmission believe it is these dry winter conditions that make the greatest contribution to flu season. Flu is often passed from person to person through contact with moisture droplets produced when the infected person sneezes or coughs. Dry winter air saps the moisture from those droplets, which gives the flu virus more opportunity to remain in the air or on surfaces. In dry conditions, experts believe, the flu virus produces a protective coating that allows the organism to survive.
Evidence also suggests that the flu transmission is aided by the effects of dry winter air on nasal passages and mucous membranes. The flu virus is more likely to be transmitted to your body under these conditions. Then, when the virus is inhaled deeper into your lungs where there is plenty of moisture, the protective coating dissolves and the virus is able to revive and infect your system.
A whole-house humidifier adds moisture to the air flowing through your forced-air furnace, helping keep your indoor humidity level at a beneficial level of 45 to 55 percent. Additional humidity throughout your home not only reduces the uncomfortable effects of dry air, it can help decrease your chances of catching the flu this winter.
More than fifty years in the HVAC industry makes Arpi’s Industries Ltd. one of the Calgary area’s most experienced and reliable providers of heating and air conditioning services. Contact us today for more information on whole-house humidifier systems and how they contribute to improved indoor comfort and reduced chances of catching wintertime flu.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Calgary, Alberta about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about humidifiers and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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