Water is a primary component of our body. It’s essential for survival, but does that mean our homes need the same amount? Not at all.
Moist and humid homes give way to numerous problems, including rodents and termites, to name a few. Extreme humidity creates a foul smell; it’s terrible for electric appliances, makes your home feel moldy, and is harmful to people with asthma and other respiratory problems.
Which is why dehumidifiers have become essential. But what does a dehumidifier do?
A dehumidifier removes excess moisture or water vapor from your living space and regulates the right level of humidity. Upon reaching the optimal humidity level depending on the weather, a dehumidifier maintains the humidity levels to keep things comfortable for the residents.
Read on as I discuss in detail how a dehumidifier works and whether a dehumidifier will be a suitable investment for your home.
How Does A Dehumidifier Actually Work?
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As mentioned, the primary purpose of a dehumidifier is to pull out excess water from your home to maintain the right humidity level.
There are three types of Dehumidifiers- Refrigerant, Whole House & Desiccant. Here is how each type works:
This is the most common type of dehumidifier found in most households. The working mechanism of refrigerant dehumidifiers is pretty simple and is similar to a refrigerator.
You must have noticed how moisture collects on a glass full of cold water on a hot day. This is condensation, and Refrigerant dehumidifiers function similarly.
These humidifiers have a cool metal plate where moisture from the air condenses. An electric fan constantly draws the moist or humid air and passes it through the metal plates.
The excess moisture in the air condenses into the metal plate and ultimately drips into the dehumidifier water tank.
Like the glass of water, the dehumidifier metal plates or coils are colder than the air sucked in. This process cools the air and reduces its ability to hold moisture.
Next, the cooled air passes through the dehumidifier’s warm motor, which slightly warms the air before releasing it back into the room.
Refrigerant dehumidifiers work best in warm to average temperatures. Its work efficiency reduces in colder temperatures because of ice formation on the metal plates or coils.
Whole House Dehumidifiers
Whole-house dehumidifiers are the cheapest among all the three types. These standalone units use the ventilation system to remove mold, moisture, and excess moisture from your living space.
The ductwork in the whole house dehumidifier draws the humid air, making the moisture condense. The moisture or water droplets fall into the collection pan. The cooled air is again passed through the warm coils to bring it back to room temperature.
The dehumidifier then releases the moisture-free air back into your house.
A large desiccant wheel in desiccant dehumidifiers sucks in excess water vapor from the air. But what is a desiccant wheel or a desiccant drying system?
The desiccant drying system is similar to the silicon gel balls we often find with our packages. The wheel consisting of desiccant constantly rotates through the incoming air and absorbs excess moisture.
A proportion of the rotation cycle passes through a stream of warm air, which is necessary to reactivate the desiccant and remove moisture from it. Finally, dry air is released back into the room.
The water is then collected in the dehumidifier tank or drained out via a pipe connected to the back of the dehumidifier.
A desiccant dehumidifier is lighter than the refrigerant type and is also popular among customers.
What Are The Advantages & Disadvantages Of A Dehumidifier?
Considering the constantly rising temperatures and humid environment, a dehumidifier is necessary for our households.
Following Are Some Of Its Primary Advantages
Helps Those With Respiratory Issues
Dehumidifiers may help asthma patients. Moisture in the air makes the air heavy, making it difficult for asthma patients to breathe. Since the dehumidifiers dry the air by removing moisture, people with asthma won’t find breathing difficult.
Reduces The Risk Of Allergic Reactions
Dehumidifiers also reduce the chances of eye or skin irritation, chest pain, sneezing, itching, etc.
Keeps Your House Free From Mold And Mold-causing Insects
It frees your house from mold, mildew, algae, pollen, etc. Your house will also be free from spiders, cockroaches, and similar insects because these don’t occur in a dry environment.
Limits Water Leakage Damage
A dehumidifier is of great help If you live in flood-prone areas. Most dehumidifiers also work as vacuum cleaners to help soak up the excess water. They also help mitigate the after-effects of floods by preventing mold or mildew growth.
Keeps Your House Odor Free
A musty or unpleasant odor is typical in your laundry room and other areas of your house during the monsoon. Dehumidifiers also prevent this by soaking up excess water from your living space.
Prevents The Damage Of Household Items
Dehumidifiers also protect your household items. Moisture is a great enemy of furniture, books, electronics, etc. You’ll no longer have these issues once you get a dehumidifier for your home.
Following Are Some Of Its Disadvantages
While there are many benefits of dehumidifiers, there are also a few disadvantages. Let’s have a look at these as well-
Owning A Dehumidifier Can Be Expensive
One of the prime drawbacks of dehumidifiers is the electricity cost. It operates 24/7, which racks up electricity bills.
Not Suitable For Extremely Dry Climates
Dehumidifiers may cause adverse effects if you already live in a dry climate. It’ll make the air dryer. Extreme dry air is bad for those with health issues like pneumonia and also for your skin & hair.
Not Safe For People Dealing With Cough Or Stuffy Nose
Dehumidifiers are also bad for stuffy noses or dry coughs. A dehumidifier worsens the conditions.
Dehumidifiers are also pretty noisy. It may bother people who are especially intolerant of noise.
Needs Regular Maintenance
Dehumidifiers also need regular maintenance. You need to clean both the filter and the water tank. You must clean these two parts at least twice a week.
How To Use A Dehumidifier?
Setting the dehumidifier is pretty easy; all you have to do is-
1. Set The Dehumidifier at the Right Setting
Set the humidity level after getting the dehumidifier. The right humidity level is usually between 30% to 40%. However, it may vary depending on factors such as weather, the size of the room, and more. Here’s some information on what is the right setting for a dehumidifier.
2. Place It At The Right Spot
Place the dehumidifier in the right spot. The device should get free space to allow the air to flow freely in and out of it. And close all doors and windows; otherwise, the dehumidifier won’t perform its best.
3. Keep Checking The Water Tank
Emptying the dehumidifier tank regularly is crucial. Most dehumidifiers feature an indicator that lights up when the water tank is full and the machine turns off. You can connect a hose to the dehumidifier to directly drain the water. Some models have a built-in pump to push the water out of the dehumidifier.
4. Keep It Clean
The efficiency of dehumidifiers will take a hit when the filter is not cleaned regularly. Hence, you must regularly clean the filter and the water tank to allow it to work at full capacity.
What Is The Difference Between A Dehumidifier & A Humidifier?
Well, the names are pretty self-explanatory. A dehumidifier removes excess moisture from the air, while a humidifier adds moisture to dehydrated air. Humidifiers are best during winter when the air is too dry.
Humidifiers are of two types- warm-mist humidifiers and cool-mist humidifiers. And the different types of dehumidifiers are already mentioned above. Here is a detailed difference between humidifiers and dehumidifiers.
When Should You Get A Dehumidifier?
If you’re facing the following problems, it’s a sign that your house needs a dehumidifier-
- If you’re allergic and your allergies are flaring up.
- If you live in a flood-prone area.
- If your house faces water leakage frequently.
- If there is a constant damp smell in your home.
- If pests like cockroaches, spiders, and moths are constantly increasing in your home.
- If dry cough, runny nose, and other respiratory problems are familiar to you.
- If your clothes feel damp or you can see muggy air as you enter your home.
What Does A Dehumidifier Do FAQs
Does A Dehumidifier Cool A Room?
No, a dehumidifier does not cool a room. It removes moisture from the air and does not work like an air conditioner.
What Type of Dehumidifier do I Need For a Bedroom?
There are several things to consider if you’re looking for a dehumidifier to use in a bedroom. The size of the room is an essential factor, as larger rooms require more powerful dehumidifiers. In addition, the room’s desired humidity level should be considered when selecting a dehumidifier. For example, if you are looking to maintain relative humidity between 30 and 50%, then a desiccant or refrigerant dehumidifier would be suitable.
A compressor dehumidifier is recommended if you want to achieve lower humidity levels, such as 20%. Furthermore, it is crucial to consider noise levels when selecting a dehumidifier for a bedroom, as the noise from the device can impact sleep quality. Generally, desiccant and compressor dehumidifiers tend to be quieter than refrigerant models, making them more suitable for bedrooms. Finally, it is essential to research different dehumidifiers to find one that meets your requirements and budget.
What Type of Dehumidifier do I Need For a Basement?
When choosing a dehumidifier for a basement, it is essential to consider the size of the space and its conditions. The ideal dehumidifier will have enough power to effectively reduce moisture levels in the basement but not be too powerful or large to become an energy burden. Generally speaking, any dehumidifier with a capacity of 70 pints per day or higher is suitable for a basement. It is also essential to factor in the space’s relative humidity, as dehumidifiers with lower settings may be necessary for humid areas. Additionally, while many models are designed specifically for basements, it is possible to use any dehumidifier that meets the criteria above.
Ensuring that the dehumidifier is sealed correctly and well-ventilated is key to maintaining proper air quality levels in a basement, so it is essential to consider how this will be accomplished. Additionally, check for any noise ratings or energy efficiency labels to ensure you get the most out of your purchase.
Properly evaluating the size, conditions, and requirements of a basement before purchasing a dehumidifier makes it possible to select the optimal model for any given space. With careful consideration and research, finding the right dehumidifier can help ensure that your basement remains comfortable and dry year-round.
What Does A Dehumidifier Do For Babies?
The dehumidifier keeps the Relative Humidity (RH) level stable – 30% to 50%, making the air comfortable for babies, especially if they have asthma or allergies.
What Does A Dehumidifier Do To Prevent Sickness?
Itchy skin, sneezing, chest pain, and eye irritation can be caused by humid air. A dehumidifier prevents such conditions by maintaining a comfortable moisture level.
A dehumidifier is a must-have to remove the water vapors from inside your space. Nobody wants a foul-smelling house with mold and mildew in it.
And the dehumidifier is made precisely for the purpose. By maintaining a comfortable humidity level, the device prevents the growth of dust mites and other allergy-causing substances from the air. This rewards the residents with a fresh indoor environment.