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Atlantic Refrigeration and Air Conditioning, Inc. Blog

Install a Dehumidifier to Fight Muggy Air


Delaware summers mean high temperatures and lots of rain, and this summer is new exception. Most homeowners focus quite rightfully on air conditioning in such circumstances, and a good AC is likely the most important part of your home in the summer. But air conditioners are built to deal with heat, not humidity, and while they can cut down on the mugginess in your home, it’s often more of a side effect than an intended action.

Whole-house dehumidifiers, on the other hand, can remove excess moisture in your home the right way, as well as providing a number of other advantages. Here’s a quick breakdown on how they work and what they can bring to your home.

High Humidity Can Be Awful

Humidity levels in the air are usually measured as a percentage called relative humidity. (100% is total humidity – usually rain or snow – while 0% means no humidity at all.) When the relative humidity levels rise above 50%, there’s too much moisture in the air to let the sweat on our skin evaporate. That’s how our body cools off, which means that high humidity makes us feel hotter and les comfortable. The sweat stays on our skin, which is never a pleasant feeling, and the high levels of moisture can encourage the growth of bacteria in your home.

Why Don’t Air Conditioners Work?

Technically, air conditioners work to get rid of high humidity levels. But it’s incidental to the system’s job: cooling the air not getting rid of the moisture. Of course, cooling the air does remove the moisture, since it causes the water vapors in the air to coalesce into droplets. (That’s why you get dew on the ground in the early morning hours: the coolest of the day.)

The problem is that the air conditioner removes humidity very crudely, without any control over how much moisture is removed from the air. Furthermore, the effort of doing so forces the air conditioner to burn more energy and raise your monthly costs in the bargain, as well as increasing stress on the individual components of the AC. That can mean a greater risk of a breakdown and even shorten the air conditioner’s lifespan in some instances. And all of that comes on top of the fact that high humidity makes you feel warmer, leading you to lower the thermostat and run the air conditioner harder to make up the difference.

Dehumidifiers Are the Right Tool for the Job

Dehumidifiers often perform under the same basic principles as air conditioning: lowering the temperatures to remove the moisture. But because the temperature isn’t a factor, it doesn’t need to vent the excess heat the way that air conditioners do. That means it doesn’t need to use nearly as much energy that the air conditioner does. Furthermore, you can properly adjust humidity levels to suit your taste, all while easing some of the burden off of your air conditioner.

Here in Bridgeville, DE, dehumidifiers can be installed by the pros at Atlantic Refrigeration & Air Conditioning, Inc.

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