How Does a Dehumidifier Work?
Do you ever struggle with humidity in your home? If so, you’re not alone. Many people find that their home is too humid during the summer, which can lead to a number of problems.
In this guide, we will discuss how a dehumidifier works, and how it can help you control the humidity in your home.
What is Humidity?
Humidity is the amount of water vapor present in the air. The higher the humidity, the more moisture there is in the air.
While some people prefer a humid environment, too much humidity can lead to a number of problems. High humidity can cause condensation on walls and windows, musty odors, mold, mildew growth, and increased dust mite activity.
So What is a Dehumidifier?
A dehumidifier is an electrical appliance that reduces the level of humidity in the air, typically for health or comfort reasons. By extracting water from the air, they can also help reduce the risk of condensation and mold growth.
A dehumidifier can be used in both domestic and commercial settings, with various models available to suit different needs. Here you can compare dehumidifiers for your basement.
How Does a Dehumidifier Work?
Here are the basic steps of how a dehumidifier works:
Pull air from the room into the dehumidifier
The first step is to draw air from the room into the dehumidifier. This is done by a fan that pulls air through a series of filters, and over a cold evaporator coil.
The humid air passes over the cold evaporator coil
As the humid air passes over the cold evaporator coil, water condenses on the coil. This is because the air is cooled below its dew point, which causes water to condense out of the air.
The water is collected in a tray or bucket
The water that condenses on the evaporator coil is collected in a tray or bucket. Some dehumidifiers have a pump that will then remove the water from the tray, and send it to a drain.
The now dry air is reheated and sent back into the room
The now dry air is reheated, and sent back into the room. This process continues until the desired humidity level is reached. A dehumidifier is a great way to remove excess moisture from the air. This can be helpful in reducing mold and mildew growth, as well as in eliminating musty or persistent odors.
When Should I Use a Dehumidifier?
There are a few key indicators that typically signal when it might be time to break out the dehumidifier. If you notice any of the following, it could be time to start using a dehumidifier in your home:
If you’re unsure whether humidity is to blame for any of these issues, you can always buy a hygrometer to measure the humidity levels in your home.
Benefits of Using a Dehumidifier
In addition to reducing mold and mildew growth, using a dehumidifier can also:
A humid environment can make it difficult to sleep, as it can cause you to feel stuffy and uncomfortable. By reducing the humidity in your bedroom, you may find it easier to sleep.
If you suffer from dust allergies, reducing the humidity in your home can help reduce dust mites activity, and alleviate your symptoms.
Protect your belongings
Excess humidity can damage your belongings, such as books, electronics, and musical instruments. By using a dehumidifier, you can help protect your belongings from damage.
How Do I Choose a Dehumidifier?
When choosing a dehumidifier, there are a few factors to consider:
1. The size of the unit
Make sure to choose a dehumidifier that is the appropriate size for the room you’re using it in. Otherwise, it won’t be effective at reducing humidity.
2. The capacity
Dehumidifiers come with different capacities, so you will need to choose one that can suitably handle the amount of moisture in your home.
3. The features
Dehumidifiers come with a range of features, such as automatic shut-off, timer functions, and filters. Choose a dehumidifier that has the features you need.
Can a Dehumidifier Stop Dampness and Mold?
If you already have a dampness or mold problem in your home, a dehumidifier can help to control the issue. However, it’s important to address the cause of the dampness or mold before using a dehumidifier. Otherwise, you may find that the problem continues despite using a dehumidifier. For example, if you have a damp problem due to condensation, using a dehumidifier can help control the issue.
However, you will also need to take measures to reduce the amount of condensation in your home, such as ventilating rooms when cooking or showering. If you have a mold problem, you will need to remove the mold before using a dehumidifier. Once the mold has been removed, you can use a dehumidifier to help prevent it from returning.
Our Tips On Using Your Dehumidifier
Here are a few tips on using your dehumidifier:
Place the unit on a level surface
Place the unit on a level surface, such as a table or shelf. This will help ensure that the dehumidifier can work effectively.
Empty the water tank regularly
Depending on the capacity of your unit, you may need to empty the water tank several times a day. Be sure to empty the water tank regularly, as this will help prevent the growth of mold and mildew.
Clean the filter regularly
A dirty filter can reduce the efficiency of your dehumidifier. Cleaning the filter regularly will help ensure that the unit is working effectively. You can do this manually, or by using a vacuum on the air filter.
Vacuum before using your dehumidifier
If your home is particularly dusty, it’s a good idea to vacuum before using your dehumidifier. This will help ensure that the unit doesn’t become clogged with dust.
Keep doors and windows closed
If you’re using your dehumidifier in one room, be sure to keep the doors and windows closed. This will help prevent humid air from entering the room, and offsetting the work of the unit.
By following these tips, you can help ensure that your dehumidifier is working efficiently, and effectively.
Can a Dehumidifier Help With Allergies?
If you suffer from allergies, a dehumidifier can help alleviate your symptoms. By reducing the humidity in your home, you can reduce dust mite activity and improve your air quality.
Additionally, if you have pets, a dehumidifier can help remove pet dander from the air. This can be particularly beneficial for people who suffer from pet allergies.
Compressor or Desiccant Dehumidifier?
Which One Do I Need?
There are two main types of dehumidifiers: compressor dehumidifiers, and desiccant dehumidifiers.
So, which type of dehumidifier do you need? The answer depends on your individual needs. If you have a large home or a particularly humid environment, a compressor dehumidifier may be a better option. If you have a smaller home or a less humid environment, a desiccant dehumidifier may be enough to get the job done.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does the air conditioner work as a dehumidifier?
While an air conditioner can help reduce the humidity in your home, it is not as effective as a dehumidifier. Dehumidifiers are specifically designed to remove moisture from the air, whereas air conditioners are designed to cool the air.
What is the ideal relative humidity for a home?
The ideal relative humidity for a home is between 30% and 50%. However, this may vary depending on your individual needs. If you have allergies, you may want to keep the relative humidity in your home below 50%.
Does warm air hold more moisture than cold air?
Yes, warm air can hold more moisture than cold air. This is why humidifiers are typically used in colder months and dehumidifiers are typically used in warmer months.
Does a dehumidifier take moisture out of the air?
Moist air is drawn into the dehumidifier, where the moisture is removed from the air and collected in a water tank. The dry air is then circulated back into the room. So, yes, a dehumidifier does take moisture out of the air.