Why a Gas Furnace Dries Out Your Houses Air and How to Fix It

There’s a reason why air seems drier during cold weather than when it’s hotter. That’s due to the fact warmer air retains extra moisture, or humidity, than colder air. 

The same is true within your the U.S. house. Starting your gas furnace makes your home feel warmer but can also dry out the indoor air. Dry air can carry a whole host of ailments, such as dry skin, cracked lips and make you more exposed to getting sick. 

Here’s why your gas furnace dries out your house’s air and what you can do to counter it. 

Your Furnace’s Combustion Procedures are a share the Issue 

The fuel your furnace consumes isn’t the culprit responsible for making your house’s air seem dry. Rather, it’s the way it combusts. 

There are two different kinds of gas furnaces, standard and high efficiency. With an older standard furnace, you can detect light from the burners when it’s on. A newer, high-efficiency furnace is totally sealed. 

A standard furnace, also known as an atmosphere furnace, draws air from inside your house to function. Because the furnace consistently uses air to burn, it will also use cold, dry air from outdoors, which in turn reduces your house’s humidity. 

High-efficiency furnaces, also known as a sealed combustion furnace, are ideal for keeping your humidity steady. They draw all their combustion air from outside, but it stays locked in the sealed furnace. As an added bonus, they keep your house more warm while consuming less energy. Switching to an ENERGY STAR® furnace from an old furnace can save you as much as 40% on heating costs, according to Lennox®. 

Other than combustion, cold air also naturally flows into your house during cold weather. Reduced humidity means the air will rob moisture fast from your skin, lips, nose and throat. It also contributes to static electricity. 

How to Stabilize Humidity in Your House 

Using a humidifier. While a portable humidifier can only make one room comfy at a time, a whole-house humidifier will transport that comfort around your house. 

These are just a small number of humidifier benefits you’ll acquire when you switch to a whole-home system. 

Improved Health During Cold and Flu Season 

It’s typical that cold weather is the worst time for colds, flu and other sicknesses. That’s since you’re more apt to become sick when your nose and throat are dry. Under specific airflow conditions, air at the correct humidity level can also restrict the spread of some viruses. Also, it can weaken year-round allergy symptoms. 

Eases Dry Skin 

If you have consistent dry skin or eczema, you understand just how aggravating those conditions make you during winter. Getting a whole-house humidifier will help your skin keep more moisture. 

Better Sleep 

Maintaining your bedroom at the preferred temperature and humidity level will keep you comfortable at night. It can also alleviate loud snoring, since your throat and nose will be better hydrated. 

Defends the Wood in Your House 

Cabinets, flooring, furniture and most anything in your house that’s wood is affected when humidity is too low. This is a result of the fact dry air draws moisture from the wood and causes it to split. Balancing your house’s humidity at the correct level will keep your house’s furnishings looking their best. 

Little Maintenance Needed 

Between steady filter changes and continuous refilling, portable humidifiers demand a lot of upkeep. A whole-house humidifier only needs servicing about once a year, which can be done at the same time as your furnace tune-up. 

A steam humidifier has the least amount of maintenance since it doesn’t use a pad. It retains water in a canister and boils it into steam that gets transported through your ductwork. Because it’s independently powered, it can work when the furnace isn’t running. 

Request Your Free Home Comfort Consultation Now 

If your house’s air feels less than pleasant during cold weather, Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing can help. Call us at 866-397-3787 to request a free home comfort consultation. There’s no pressure, just free Expert suggestions on how you can maintain your house’s humidity at just the correct level. And, like our other services, our work is protected by our legendary 100% Satisfaction Guarantee for one year.* 


*Not applicable to the Advantage Program. See your signed Advantage Program Agreement for full details and exclusions. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee is subject to certain restrictions and limitations as set forth in the applicable Terms and Conditions. 

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