Benefits of a Dehumidifier
A dehumidifier helps you save energy by reducing the moisture in your home. It also helps prevent mold, mildew and dry rot that can weaken structural lumber supports.
If you live in a humid climate and notice peeling wallpaper or water beading on interior glass, you probably need a dehumidifier. These units can also help if anyone in your house suffers from allergies or asthma.
The best dehumidifiers pull air over a coil that’s cold enough to condense the moisture in it. The resulting water drips into a tank, while the dry air escapes. The dehumidifier works better in a heated room than an unheated one, because condensation forms more readily at cooler temperatures.
Moisture can cause a lot of problems in the home, from peeling wallpaper to wood rot. In addition, too much humidity can create breeding grounds for dust mites and mold, which may trigger allergies and asthma. A dehumidifier helps you control humidity levels to a “Goldilocks” level, where the humidity is neither too low nor too high.
In addition, a dehumidifier can save you money. Too much humidity means your air conditioner has to work harder to cool the space, and that raises your energy bills.
If you live in a place prone to flooding, or if your basement has the telltale white marks of a water leak, a dehumidifier can help you restore and protect your home furnishings. Choose a model that has a large water tank, or one that drains directly into a hose connected to a drainage pipe. You may have to empty the tank often. In addition, if you plan to use the dehumidifier regularly, consider choosing a model that can drain continuously. Otherwise, standing water could grow mildew and bacteria.
Many allergy triggers thrive in humid conditions, such as mold, mildew and dust mites. Having a dehumidifier in the house reduces allergens by limiting their growth and eliminating their spores from the air. Using a dehumidifier also protects against asthma and allergies.
Asthma sufferers need a dehumidifier, too, as high humidity can make it difficult to breathe and cause excess sweating and dehydration, says the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Keeping the humidity in your home dehumidifier in that Goldilocks range—between 30 and 45%—can improve breathing and prevent other problems like chest tightness, coughing and wheezing.
During warm weather, a dehumidifier helps you stay comfortable by removing the moisture in the air. It’s important to keep your basement dehumidifier and crawl space dehumidifier rated for their size and power so they can handle the moisture levels in those spaces.
A dehumidifier can eliminate fungus and bacteria that can trigger allergies, according to Healthline. It can also help your skin feel softer and more comfortable by reducing the amount of moisture in the air. For the best results, use a dehumidifier in your bathroom and rooms where there’s a lot of condensation. A dehumidifier can remove the excess humidity in the air, which can inhibit the growth of black mold and mildew and stop spores from spreading throughout your home.
Reduces Mold and Mildew
A dehumidifier can significantly reduce the amount of mold and mildew in your home. Molds are fungi that thrive when conditions are right, such as high humidity, food (cellulose), and space void of other microbial competitors. Molds can cause a variety of health problems, including respiratory issues, skin rashes and itchy eyes. Some molds are toxic and can trigger asthma or allergies.
Mold is also a source of musty odors in the home and can contribute to rot of surfaces such as wood, drywall or carpeting. A dehumidifier can help to remove the musty odor and prevent the growth of mold and mildew by taking out the moisture from the air.
It is important to remember that a dehumidifier should be used in conjunction with other strategies to get rid of and prevent mold, such as fixing the leak, drying laundry outside or improving ventilation. A dehumidifier can dramatically improve the situation, but it is important to fix the underlying problem to stop it from returning.
It is also important to clean your dehumidifier regularly to avoid spreading harmful bacteria and mildew back into dehumidifier the home. This can be done by opening the hatch leading to the collection bucket and emptying it out into a sink or drain. It is also a good idea to wipe the inside of the bucket down with a damp cloth.
Humidity is a Goldilocks issue: too little, and you’ll have dry lips; too much, and your home becomes a breeding ground for dust mites and mold. A dehumidifier helps to keep humidity levels in check by removing excess moisture from the air.
You should also consider using a dehumidifier in rooms that are susceptible to moisture buildup, such as bathrooms, if you don’t have a vent that exhausts the room outside or a window that can be opened. When humidity is high, wood swells, which can loosen nails and screws, crack plaster, and cause doors and drawers to become hard to open or shut.
A dehumidifier will help to keep humidity low in these areas and extend the life of your home’s woodwork, appliances, and furniture. You’ll also want to use a dehumidifier in your attic and crawl spaces, if you have them. Ventilation is the best way to address a moisture problem in these areas, but you can use a dehumidifier to speed up the process.
You’ll have to empty the dehumidifier’s bucket at intervals ranging from once every two days to twice a day, depending on the humidity conditions. You can recycle this water, called greywater, by using it to water houseplants and flowers, but be sure you know if there are any restrictions in your area before doing so.