Health Dangers of Low Humidity in Commercial Businesses
January 17th, 2017 by Smart Fog
Keeping a business warm in the cold months is only half the battle, at least if owners and managers want to keep their workforce and customers as healthy as possible. Controlling the temperature and humidity levels is the combination that will create a healthy and comfortable environment. Let’s discuss this topic by exploring the health dangers of low humidity in commercial businesses.
Safe Relative Humidity (RH) Levels
Ideal RH levels differ depending on the type of commercial business, ideally RH should be regulated around 40% to 60%. Anything below 30% begins to cause health problems and discomfort. Industrial RH levels should be around 45% to 60% to reduce and eliminate static build up – according to Wikipedia: “…humidity above 55% RH ensures that static will never build up.”
Factors Causing Excessive Low Humidity
Where the business is located geographically is a major factor in RH levels, for an instance, commercial warehouse in the dry desert climate of Nevada would have more issues with excessive low humidity levels, even down to 10% to 20%.
Cold weather causes low humidity, especially, during the winter months in locations that already are in dry climates. Artificially heating indoor commercial spaces during these cold winter months is also a factor in creating low humidity levels – heating uses combustion to create hot air, which burns out the water vapor in the air.
Harming Levels of Low Humidity in Commercial
Besides the damages excessively low RH levels can cause to equipment and stored inventory, it also creates health risks for the workforce and customers. According to Wikipedia:
“This low humidity can cause adverse health effects, by drying out mucous membranes such as the lining of the nose and throat, and can cause respiratory distress.”
We learn more from an article on Mercola, called: “Effects of Low Humidity on Health”, written January 13, 2014 by Dr. Mercola, when it states:
“Over time, exposure to low humidity can dry out and inflame the mucous membrane lining your respiratory tract. When this natural barrier is no longer working properly, it increases your risk of colds, the flu, and other infections.”
These reasons explain why people, generally, “catch colds” in the winter months. Low humidity also creates irritation to the eyes and dries out the skin, which creates discomfort and hampers employee production.
Most people understand how excessive high humidity creates a breeding ground for molds and other air-borne pathogens, yet are less aware of the health risks that excessive low humidity creates. Furthermore, employees calling in sick for days or weeks is very disruptive for commercial businesses, and putting: customers, vendors, partners, and other building visitors at risk for getting sick, isn’t good for businesses either.
Commercial Humidifiers are the Solution
Controlling the temperature with a HVAC unit isn’t enough, as we’ve learned, commercial businesses also need to control the humidity levels. This means a commercial humidifier is needed, either in-duct or wall-mounted. The humidifier and HVAC unit work together to control temperature and humidity levels for optimal health and comfort for employees and customers.
The key point to understand at this point is: not all commercial humidifiers are the same. Let’s look at what commercial businesses should want from their humidification systems:
- low maintenance
- no drainage or clogging
- low pressure
- sanitizes the air
- no wetting
- intelligent precise humidity control
- easy to install
These are some of the many attributes of Smart Fog’s commercial humidification systems. It can be wall-mounted, placed in-duct, or used as a mobile unit. Also, these attributes are not found in other humidification systems. Smart Fog® De-Correlation Technology uses Smart Fog’s commercial humidification systems which are the only facility in the industry.
No matter what geographical location or climate a commercial business in, controlling excessive humidity levels is important. Moreover, low humidity in commercial often not taken care of. Also, it has the potential to cause health problems to employees and customers and damages to equipment and inventory.
The good news is: Smart Fog’s innovative commercial humidification systems can solve any excessive humidity problems. If interested in learning more please contact us today.