How do I reduce static electricity in my house?

As we head into colder, dryer weather, you’re probably starting to notice an increase in static electricity in your home. The good news? You can actually control how much static electricity forms in your home.

3 ways to reduce static electricity in your home include:

  1. Installing a whole-home humidifier
  2. Adding houseplants
  3. Using “anti-static” spray

We’ll explain why these things help prevent static electricity but first, let’s take a close look at what’s causing static electricity in the first place.

How is static electricity created?

Static electricity forms when two objects come into contact with each other (i.e. your socks and the carpet). The contact/friction between the two objects causes electrons to move from one object to the other.

Let’s say that as you walk across a carpeted room, your socks and the carpet are actively exchanging electrons and your socks end up with more electrons than they started with while the carpet has less.

This “imbalance of electrons” is what sparks static electricity.

The green electrons on this molecule’s outer shell like to “jump” off and attach to other molecules on other objects.Source

So think of that nasty shock as all those misplaced electrons jumping through the air from a negatively charged object to a positively charged object (in order to neutralize both objects and restore the balance of electrons).

Why is there more static electricity in the winter?

Static electricity is more common in the winter because there’s less moisture in cold, dry air.

So how does moisture in the air prevent static electricity from forming?

Well, water is an excellent “conductor” (meaning electrons can easily move through it). So as water condenses on the surface of items, misplaced electrons can easily and quickly travel to find a molecule that is missing an electron, restoring balance and preventing electric shock.

So now that we know what causes and prevents static electricity, let’s look at some ways you can reduce static in your home.

Adding moisture to your home’s air reduces static electricity

3 ways to add moisture to your home’s air include:

1. Adding a whole-home humidifier

A whole-home humidifier is the best option for reducing static electricity because it pushes moisture throughout the entire home and keeps your home’s humidity levels at a constant level all year round.

A whole-home humidifier installs directly into your HVAC system and pushes moisture through your home’s duct-work. Humidity levels are then monitored and controlled via your home’s thermostat.

2. Adding houseplants

Plants are like humans in that they “sweat”—a lot. In fact, 90% of the water a plant absorbs is then released as water vapor into the air through tiny holes in the plant’s leaves. So adding a few well-placed houseplants throughout your home can quick and easy way to add moisture to your home’s air.

Want to kill two birds with one stone?

3. Using “anti-static” spray

While many companies sell actual anti-static spray, it’s simple to create your own on the cheap. Simply mix fabric softener and water in a spray bottle and mist it evenly over the carpet, couch and other surfaces in your home.

(Just remember to spray this daily.)

Interested in a whole-home humidifier?

If you want to banish static electricity from your home for good, a whole-home humidifier is your best option.

Want a professional quote on a whole-home humidifier installation? Just contact us for professional advice and a fair price.