Summers in Northern Kentucky and Southern Ohio are no stranger to high humidity. Installing a whole home dehumidifier can be a smart investment in protecting your property and improving the health of your family members. Poor indoor air quality plays a major role in seasonal allergies and provoking respiratory issues. A whole-home dehumidifier is a useful device that helps control high humidity levels throughout your home. Unlike a room dehumidifier, a whole-house dehumidifier mounts into the HVAC system to treat the entire home. Poston Brothers examine the benefits of a whole-house dehumidifier, how it works, does, and how you should use it to get the most out of it.
What is the Purpose of a Whole-Home Dehumidifier?
Excess humidity is common in certain areas of the home like basements and crawlspaces. Spring and summer months can cause humidity to rise throughout your home. A modern air conditioner system helps to control humidity but a whole-house dehumidifier provides a much more comprehensive system. The purpose of a whole-home system can be a preventative measure to prevent moisture problems.
In Northern Kentucky and the Cincinnati area, Poston Brothers Heating & Cooling helps homeowners create a layer of protection between the outdoor environment and their homes. When you consult with your local HVAC professional about a new air conditioner, HVAC system or you are simply experiencing issues within your home, a whole home dehumidifier can maintain the ideal indoor humidity levels. This can have a number of benefits including:
Prevent Mold Growth
Biological growth including mold thrives in moist environments. High humidity levels provide the perfect breeding ground for mold, especially in bathrooms, basements, crawlspaces, and attics, rooms that don’t have great ventilation or a window. Once mold grows it can quickly spread and lead to health issues and damage to your property. A dehumidifier helps reduce the humidity levels so the mold never has a chance to grow.
Fresh air ventilation is very difficult to maintain when humidity levels are high. Stagnant air combined with moisture can aggravate allergies by providing a favorable environment for dust mites and other allergens. If you have family members with seasonal allergies, asthma, and other respiratory issues, you may already have a single-room dehumidifier in your home. These devices treat a particular area like a bedroom or a nursery. Installing a whole-house dehumidifier improves the indoor air quality throughout every room in your home, making life a bit easier for allergy sufferers.
Protect Furniture and Electronics
Flooring that is warped is a telltale sign of high humidity. Wood can swell and warp when humidity levels rise. If you have doors that stick, drawers that jamb, or furniture that is damaged, the cause may be indoor humidity. In extreme cases, electronics can malfunction due to humidity. A dehumidifier helps prevent this damage from occurring.
Improve Indoor Air Quality
Indoor air quality is not only related to allergies. High humidity levels can lead to musty and unpleasant odors in your home. A dehumidifier reduces these odors, improving the overall air quality in your home.
One of the best reasons to invest in a whole-home dehumidifier is to reduce energy use. When humidity levels are too high, the air feels warmer. You are more likely to increase the use of your HVAC system when humidity levels are excessive within your home. Once a whole-house dehumidifier is installed, you can lower the temperature settings on your thermostat without sacrificing comfort.
How Does a Whole-House Dehumidifier Work?
A whole-house dehumidifier is typically installed into the air handler of your home’s HVAC system. The dehumidifier draws air over a cold coil. The coil reduces the air to a temperature below its dew point. This causes the moisture in humid air to condense. The dry air then passes into the air handler where is treated by the evaporator coil and circulated throughout your home. The moisture that condenses on the coil is collected in a drip pan and drained away through a pipe or pump.
A whole-home dehumidifier may be used seasonally or at all times. It is less likely to use a dehumidifier unit during cold seasons. Modern whole-house dehumidifiers have sensors that monitor the relative humidity in your home and adjust the dehumidifier’s operation accordingly. Some models feature a humidistat that allows you to set a specific humidity level that you would like to maintain. In forced air heating seasons, you may opt to turn off your dehumidifier to reduce wear and prolong the life of the device.
Whole-house dehumidifiers are durable and require very little maintenance. One of the only drawbacks of these devices is energy requirements. The devices run on electricity and therefore require ongoing operating costs.
How Do You Know If You Need A Dehumidifier?
Generally, when you consult with your local HVAC expert a quick inspection or just a series of questions can determine whether you need a whole-house dehumidifier. You can test indoor humidity yourself with a humidistat. There are also signs of excessive moisture levels in your home including:
- High Humidity Levels – Indoor relative humidity should be a consistent 50%. Higher levels should be controlled by a dehumidifier.
- Water Spots, Mold, or Mildew Growth – Any indications of mildew growth or water stains can indicate high humidity.
- Musty Odors – If your home has musty odors or stale smells in certain areas, a whole home dehumidifier can help. This can be common in below-ground spaces including basements and crawlspaces where humidity, low light, and poor circulation create an ideal environment for biological growth.
- Condensation on Windows and Doors – Condensation settling on your windows and glass doors is a sign there is too much moisture in the air. A dehumidifier can help remove this excess moisture and prevent condensation from forming.
- Allergies or Respiratory Problems – As previously mentioned one of the most common causes of respiratory issues are high humidity and low humidity. A whole-home dehumidifier can help everyone in the home and even improve sleep patterns.
- Warped Wood or Peeling Wallpaper – If you notice that your wood floors or furniture are warping or your wallpaper is peeling, it’s a sign that there is too much moisture in the air.
Should I Use Dehumidifier in Summer or Winter?
You can use a dehumidifier in both summer and winter but for different reasons.
In the warmer spring and summer months, the air tends to be more humid due to conditions outside the home. Using a dehumidifier can help remove excess moisture from the air, making your home feel more comfortable.
In winter, the air tends to be drier due to colder temperatures and increased use of heating systems. That’s when you might opt for a humidifier. A dehumidifier can take away moisture, and a humidifier can add it. Excessively dry indoor air can also cause issues for those with respiratory issues, as well as dry skin, and electric shocks. The team at Poston Brothers can set your HVAC system up with both devices to provide comfort to your home in every season.
Call Poston Brothers to Install a Whole Home Dehumidifier
Poston Brothers offers complete consultations with homeowners. Our team works to find the best solutions to control excess humidity within your home. In some cases portable and single room dehumidifiers are a practical solution. However, these devices can take up a lot of space, create noise and only offer humidity control in a small space. If you have seen any signs of excessive humidity within your home, then your friendly local indoor air quality experts are eager to help.
There is a simple process of testing humidity levels in your home and matching a dehumidifier that is compatible with your HVAC system. Installation is a simple process and operating the system is very easy. If you are interested in finding out if a whole house dehumidifier can benefit you contact Poston Brothers.