By Howard Baker
It’s no secret that Miami is one of the most popular cities in the United States, both as a place to live and for tourists from all around the country and from all around the world too. It’s pretty notorious.
And it’s not that hard to see why it’s such a desirable place. It’s the birthplace of art deco, there’s a great performing arts scene, there are some amazing restaurants and of course, it’s a coastal city with some pretty incredible beaches.
People flock to Miami during the summer because it’s one of the best beach cities in the country. It’s not just the fact that it’s on the coast which is a contributing factor to that, but also because of the climate.
It’s one of those cities which has agreeable weather pretty much all year round. Even during the winter it’s mild at worst, and winter is actually a popular time for a beach holiday in Miami because it’s warm enough but not uncomfortably hot.
Something else that is a consequence of the climate, and perhaps not quite so pleasant of a consequence, is the humidity. Miami can be a very humid city, and if you’re living in Miami this can have certain effects on your home.
Specifically, your appliances. Before we get into that those potentially negative effects are, let’s quickly cover what humidity actually is:
What is Humidity?
In the simplest of terms, humidity just refers to the amount of water vapor in the air. The term that you have probably heard mentioned in this discussion is ‘relative humidity’, and what this means is how much vapor there is in the air, compared to how much is possible with the current temperature.
The higher the temperature, the more water vapor the air can hold. It’s a different kind of heat, and you’d recognize the feeling of humidity even if you weren’t entirely sure of what was causing it.
The air feels thicker. It’s a heat that’s kind of congestive and heavy and there is a distinct lack of a cool breeze for relief. It can be very uncomfortable outside, but when the air in your home is humid, that’s when problems start arising.
Humidity in the Home
Humidity can cause certain health problems. Prolonged exposure can lead to influenza or asthma and it can also contribute to the spread of mold which is bad for your health in its own right.
But even putting aside the personal effects, your electronics and appliances can suffer from the humidity too. First and foremost, let’s consider the most obviously affected appliances, those being your fridge and your freezer.
The more humid the air is, the more your fridge and freezer will have to work to keep food cold. And while you adjust the temperature setting, this is likely to cause them to overwork and ultimately break down.
Other appliances are also at risk. The moisture content in the air can lead to condensation, which will form when warm air comes into contact with a cool surface. Humid air will often seep inside appliances and condensation can form.
Washing machines, dishwashers, microwaves and even televisions and computers all have internal components which are not designed to handle moisture. Condensation can lead to rust and corrosion which will gradually wear away these internal components.
Allowing humidity to build up in your home is in some ways quite similar to spilling water on these electronics. It won’t cause damage quite as quickly, but it is still moisture which as we all know is not conducive to healthy electronics.
This is the last thing that any of us want. To have our appliances slowly starting to degrade from the inside us without us even realizing it. It’s a result of hot weather that a lot of people aren’t even aware of.
And they might be dealing with electronics which are no longer functioning, and just assume that it’s general wear and tear and not something which they could have prevented with a little bit of preparation.
It’s especially important to keep this under control for appliances that were present when you bought the house and if they are covered by a warranty that is still in effect. And realistically, a warranty that covers all your bases is something that you should prioritize if you’re going to be buying in Florida soon.
So how can you prevent this? First thing you need to do is make sure that the humidity levels in your home are monitored. You can get something known as a hygrometer, which works as both an indoor thermometer and a humidity monitor.
Humidity should be somewhere between 30 and 50% for the most agreeable environment for you and your appliances. If it is too high, you should definitely invest in a good air conditioner as well as a dehumidifier.
You should also think about your house plants. The leaves of most plants retain moisture and if the environment is already humid, the extra moisture from plants will contribute to that, so consider either moving them outside or to a well ventilated room.
And then you could also opt for taking shorter and cooler showers during the more humid months, just to minimize the vapor in the air as much as possible.
Humidity in the home is just an extra thing that you have to think about if you live in a place like Miami, because if left unchecked, the negative effects could be disastrous. But if you are prepared and you know how to deal with it, then the humidity shouldn’t outweigh the positive effects which are also associated with living in Miami.
Haz clic para leer en Español: Protegiendo su hogar: la humedad y sus electrodomésticos