Let Action Furnace show you the best ways to reduce static buildup in your home, from treating your carpets with anti-static spray and using dryer sheets to adding more humidity to your indoor air.
Uninvited zaps from doorknobs and clingy clothes are just a few of the problems that come with static electricity building up in your home—but you don’t have to let these issues be everyday occurrences! Reducing static at home may only take a few minor adjustments, and the team of comfort experts at Action Furnace is here to walk you through them.
Below, we’ll explain the best ways to kiss static goodbye—from buying more indoor plants to installing a humidifier. You might be shocked at how easy it is!
Reducing Static at a Glance
We’ve explained the different strategies we recommend below—but if you only have a few minutes, check out this handy infographic that gets the key points across!
Now, let’s take a closer look at each of these techniques and how you can implement them best.
Add Moisture to Your Indoor Air
When the air in your home is dry, more static can build up. Investing in a humidifier can add enough moisture to your home’s atmosphere that it prevents this from occurring.
Adding the right amount of moisture to your home’s air is easiest with a whole-home humidifier. Installing one of these units in your HVAC system allows you to control humidity levels throughout your entire house by using your thermostat.
Whole home humidifiers also take out the guesswork of using standalone humidifiers, which often produce too much or not enough moisture for the air in your home. Ideally, you’ll want humidity levels between 30% and 50% at home for optimal comfort and health.
Cultivate Indoor Plants
Plants enhance your living space, but did you know they can also help reduce static? Through a process called evapotranspiration, the water travels from the soil, through the stem and leaves, and then evaporates into your home’s air where it adds moisture naturally (just make sure you water your plants!).
Of course, finding the right type of plants and purchasing the right amount can take some trial and error. You don’t need to go too crazy on the greenery (unless you want to), but here are some excellent indoor plants to boost the humidity in your home:
- Spider plant: a hanging plant that grows well in bright, indirect sunlight.
- Jade plant: a succulent plant that likes to be in a bright, sunny spot.
- English ivy: a hanging plant that needs bright light and slightly dry soil.
- Rubber plant: a tropical tree that likes partial sun and can survive cooler temperatures.
- Peace lily: a tropical evergreen that blooms a white flower in the summer.
Remove Your Shoes & Socks
Synthetic materials like polyester, rayon, silk, and wool are more prone to static buildup when rubbed against other synthetic surfaces. This means your socks and shoes can quickly become electrically charged when rubbed against your carpet.
Going barefoot reduces static buildup—and it feels nicer, too! But, if you would rather not remove your socks, try to pick your feet up as you walk across your carpet and avoid shuffling.
If you must wear shoes, stick with leather, not rubber. And if you must wear socks, stick with cotton, not wool. Finally, make sure to put those silk pajamas back in the closet until summertime.
Treat Your Carpet with Anti-Static Spray
If you have carpet, the chances of having static buildup in your home are higher than for those who have hardwood floors. To combat this, you can either purchase anti-static spray for your carpet or make your own by diluting some fabric softener with water and applying it with a spray bottle.
Use your anti-static spray on the most commonly walked-on areas of your carpet. There’s usually no need to spray hard-to-reach corners, since nobody walks there anyway.
Use Dryer Sheets on Your Furniture
You probably already have some dryer sheets in your laundry room, so this is an easy tip to apply. Dryer sheets neutralize odours and electrical charges, which is why you toss them in the dryer to ensure clothes smell fresh and don’t cling.
When you rub dryer sheets over your upholstery, they can also help reduce static on your furniture. Think of it like dusting, but for static instead of dirt and grime!
Take Hot Baths & Showers
When you turn up the heat in your bathroom, the steam from the hot water will add moisture to your home’s air. If you turn the fan off and let steam pour out of the shower, this will naturally reduce nearby static by adding humidity.
Likewise, if you take a hot bath, you might want to let the water cool down before you drain it so that you can maximize the heat coming off—just make sure to avoid letting too much steam accumulate in your bathroom so that your walls don’t sweat! We recommend using a humidifier instead so that you can spread moisture evenly throughout the air in your home.
Frequently Asked Questions about Static Electricity
Where Does Static Electricity Come From?
All physical objects consist of atoms with protons, electrons, and neutrons. Protons have a positive charge, while electrons have a negative one. Electrons can move from one surface to another, and through friction, they can transfer and accumulate on a surface, leading to static charge buildup. This charge discharges when it finds another surface, resulting in static electricity. For instance, shuffling on a carpet can build up electrons, which can discharge when touching a metal doorknob and give a shock.
Why is Static More Common in Winter?
Static is more prevalent in winter because the air is drier, which makes it harder for electrons to move. Using heaters during this time can further reduce indoor humidity, promoting static buildup.
Can Static Electricity be Harmful?
While the small shocks from static electricity are usually harmless, in certain situations, static electricity can pose a fire risk, especially near flammable materials or solvents.
Do All Materials Produce Static Electricity?
Not all materials produce static equally. Synthetic materials like rubber, wool, and polyester are more prone to generating static, especially when in contact with similar materials.
How Does Humidity Impact Static Electricity?
Higher humidity levels allow electrons to move more freely, reducing the buildup of static charges. This is why moist environments experience less static.
Adding the right amount of moisture to the air in your home can be tricky, but Action Furnace can help! Contact us to get a quote for installing a whole-home humidifier and learn more about how it can keep your family static-free.