A Whole-House Dehumidifier: When an Air Conditioner Alone Can't Do the Job

A Whole-House Dehumidifier: When an Air Conditioner Alone Can’t Do the Job

Jul 18, 2013
outside of home

Air conditioners not only remove heat from your home; they also remove moisture from it. Living in Florida, you undoubtedly know the discomfort high humidity can cause, but in your home high humidity can create additional issues, such as mold growth and moisture damage. To avoid these problems, it’s recommended that you keep your home below 50 or 60 percent relative humidity. If your air conditioner can’t remove enough moisture to keep humidity below these levels, a whole-house dehumidifier might be necessary to prevent problems.

Air conditioners remove moisture from the air because significant amounts of water condense on their evaporator coils and is drained away. Making sure your air conditioner is properly sized helps ensure it will remove as much moisture as possible.

Dehumidifiers commonly remove moisture from the air in the same manner an air conditioner does. However, they do it more efficiently because they are specifically designed to to remove moisture instead of heat. Dehumidifiers don’t end up cooling the air because unlike air conditioners, their condenser coils are located in the home so heat removed by evaporator coil is returned to the home instead of being transferred to the exterior air. Because heat is released when water condenses, dehumidifiers actually warm the air slightly. Luckily, since dry air feels cooler than moist air, you likely won’t notice any difference.

Dehumidifiers are available as portable units, but if you’re looking to dehumidify your entire home, you’ll want a whole-house dehumidifier. Using multiple portable dehumidifiers is not as efficient or convenient as a whole-house dehumidifier.

In order to use the ductwork to exchange air with all the areas of your home, whole-house dehumidifiers are installed as part of your central HVAC system. They can provide additional dehumidification while your air conditioning is running, or they can work on their own to dehumidify without cooling. It’s a good idea to buy a model that has the ability to measure the relative humidity of the air so it can turn itself on and off as needed.

If you’re interested in a whole-house dehumidifier, please contact us at Rinaldi’s Energy Solutions. We provide service, repairs and installation to homes and businesses in the Orlando area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Orlando, Florida and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about whole-house dehumidifiers and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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