Humidifying – without a humidifier

Humidifying 12

I don’t know what winter is like where you live (if, in fact, it IS winter where you live), but here in the Ottawa Valley winter is cold. Very cold. And very, very dry. It’s not uncommon to spontaneously bleed from the nose as you battle a searing headache and croak for more water through parched lips. And that’s not even an extreme case. In our house, the Pie’s sinuses dry up and cause him to snore. My asthma acts up, meaning I cough and wheeze all the time, and, because we have wall-to-wall carpeting, Gren has been avoiding us because we static shock him every time we pet him. It’s no fun.

Humidifying 1

We have a humidifier in our bedroom, and it helps a whole bunch. We did our research and got the one that worked the best for the money we wanted to pay and we’re very happy with our choice (remember, kids: always do your research when buying an appliance). I also picked up a travel-sized humidifier for the various hotel rooms I seem to be finding myself in these days (and Winnipeg is even colder and dryer than Ottawa, and I’m in it as we speak).

Humidifying 11

But sometimes you don’t want to buy a humidifier. Sometimes you can’t afford one (the ones that won’t give you Legionnaires’ Disease or fester with black mould tend to run a bit expensive). Sometimes your dormitory has ruled them out (usually for mould reasons). Or maybe you just need to give a bit of extra oomph to the humidifier you have. Here are seven quick-and-dirty tips to help you humidify your home the old-fashioned way.

1. Shower with the door open.

Humidifying 2

Yeah, so this won’t work if you have roommates or small children or larger children or children at all. But if you don’t, skip turning on the exhaust fan and get things all good and steamy.

2. Get more house plants.

Humidifying 10

So plants, when they’re done with all the nutrients and stuff in the water they suck up through their roots, basically sweat out water vapour through their leaves. It’s called transpiration. And sweaty plants make for a more humid environment.

Humidifying 9

3. Skip the dryer.

Humidifying 4

When you’re doing laundry, hang your clothes to dry inside the house in a warm spot. As the clothes dry the water on them will evaporate into the air in your house, making it more moist. MOIST. Plus you save on energy costs.

4. Spritzy-spritzy.

Humidifying 5

Grab a spray bottle of water and gently – GENTLY – spritz your curtains with a little bit of water. You don’t want them soaked or anything, but a little misting on them will produce the same effect as wet laundry – without putting your skivvies in the middle of the living room.

5. Set out bowls.

Humidifying 6

Place shallow dishes of water on sunny windowsills or on top of heating vents and the water will evaporate as it warms. Make them pretty crystal vases and you’ll add to the decor of your home. Add a floating bloom or some pretty pebbles. Granted, if you have small children or pets, leaving a bowl of water on the floor in your kitchen is asking for trouble, so be warned.

6. Wet a towel.

Humidifying 7

Run a small dish towel under your tap and then wring it out thoroughly. Lay it over a heating vent (make sure the fabric isn’t so thick that it blocks the warm air completely) and let the heat percolate through and humidify the air as the towel dries. Again, probably not a good idea with small children. This is why we can’t have nice things.

7. Cook!

Humidifying 8

When in doubt, cook. Whip up a batch of chilli or soup, anything on the stovetop that will get hot and steamy. I like to make a giant pot of tea, and when the kettle whistles and I’ve poured my pot and turned off the burner, I put the kettle back on the cooling element to let it steam itself out.

Humidifying 13

You could also try a “simmer,” which is super trendy right now. Set a saucepan full of water on your stove and heat it to a low simmer. Toss in some whole spices: bay leaves, cardamom pods, star anise, cinnamon, and allspice; or rosemary, citrus zest, and lavender – or some combination thereof – and let that sit there simmering and scenting your house while it steams it up. Just keep an eye on the pot and add more water occasionally so it doesn’t all boil away.

Advertisements

Author: allythebell

A corgi. A small boy. A sense of adventure. Chaos ensues.

12 thoughts on “Humidifying – without a humidifier”

  1. This is so funny to me. In my house we fight an excess of humidity – even with a dehumidifier running, we sit at about 50% RH right now. Every time I shower, cook, dry my laundry, or fill the cats water bowl I worry about how much humidity I’m adding. Silly old house!

    Like

  2. I used to live in a house where you could never dry anything out. Now I live about 900 miles away in a place where I apply lotion to my whole body multiple times a day and resent the fact that I can’t afford a humidifier that won’t make me sick.
    I am SOOOO trying these tips. And using the reverse when I visit my old home.

    Like

  3. Reblogged this on The inspired girl stuck in time. and commented:
    I usually don’t reblog posts other than those that are mine but this one is AMAZING. If you don’t already have a humidifier I really recommend these, especially the one about the wet cloth in the room, it really helps. If you are planning to buy one definitely buy this one http://www.target.com/p/crane-drop-ultrasonic-cool-mist-humidifier/-/A-15213805#prodSlot=_1_1 because it is the best. It is quiet, doesn’t leave a mess and it easy to clean and control. Great for any room of the house.

    Like

  4. I have the same system, only I have the pot on a wood stove, however to humidify the room in winter and in summer it is necessary to think about the fact that to buy a regular humidifier. though I wonder what will be cheaper to buy new or to do with their hands, I mean, how much does it consume energy?

    Like

  5. Yes you are right. Here I see that whole house humidifiers spend much more energy than portable. interestingly, you can find some alternative solutions for these humidifiers?

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s