Living in Glenview, Illinois, the winter is the longest season. It’s not unusual for us to run the furnace for eight straight months. The temperature is frequently below freezing and sometimes drops down into the negatives. The chilly air also means especially dry conditions. With the heater blasting, conditions inside the house can become problematic. The low humidity makes the living space feel colder and makes it tempting to raise the thermostat setting. The increased demand on the furnace results in greater energy use and higher utility bills. The added wear and tear can lead to repairs and premature failure. The dry air pulls moisture out of everything it touches, potentially damaging hardwood floors, antiques, musical instruments and wood furnishings. The overly dry conditions can be blamed for aggravating symptoms of eczema, psoriasis, allergies and asthma. Bloody noses, frizzy hair, chapped lips, headaches, difficulty sleeping and longer recovery times from flu and cold are some of the many consequences. For homes in Glenview, a whole-home humidifier is just about a necessity. I tried making do with portable humidifiers and they required constant refilling and provided very little benefit. A steam-style humidifier installed right into the furnace and introduces moisture as the air passes through. It disperses the moisture to every room in the house and allows customized settings. Since investing into the humidifier, the house feels more comfortable and I’ve noticed a significant reduction in my energy bills. I’ve suffered fewer headaches and my kids aren’t coughing or sneezing as often. The savings have definitely recovered the cost of the humidifier.