New England summers are beastly, and they seem to get worse every year. This summer is no exception and homeowners in the Boston area are well-justified in focusing on their air conditioners to keep their space cool and comfortable. But temperature isn’t the only factor in a comfortable home. Humidity plays a huge part as well, and while air conditioners can crudely address the issue of muggy air, there are better ways to solve the problem. A whole-house dehumidifier can address the problem properly and help maintain comfort levels, as well as providing a number of other advantages in the process.
High Humidity Means Unhappy People
Human beings keep cool by sweating, or more accurately, by the sweat evaporating off of our skin. When relative humidity levels climb above 50% or so, however, there’s too much ambient moisture in the air for that to happen. The sweat stays on our skin, leaving us feeling sweaty, manky and gross. Even worse, our bodies don’t cool down, which leaves the air feeling hotter than it is. In the most extreme case, that can lead to heat stroke, though the air conditioner can compensate assuming it’s functional. That act, however, puts a huge amount of pressure on the air conditioner, forcing it to work harder than it should to make the home feel cooler, and resulting in both higher energy bills and increased strain on the AC’s components.
Even worse, the air conditioner isn’t specifically set up to deal with the issue. Lowering the temperature makes a great way to remove excess moisture from the air, since the water vapor in the air will coalesce into droplets when it cools. (That’s why you get dew on the ground in the cool early hours of the morning.) By reducing the temperature of the air, the AC lowers the humidity, with a drip pan and a drain line to collect the condensate. But that lack finesse: the air conditioner can regulate the humidity, just reduce it in a crude and haphazard way. Furthermore excessive humidity in the air can overwhelm the drain pan, leading to potential overflow and a shutdown of the system.
Dehumidifiers to the Rescue
Dehumidifiers utilize the same basic principle to remove moisture from the air, but because they’re dedicated to that purpose, they can get around some of the difficulties that air conditioners experience (like the need to vent hot air). They can also store or remove the condensate much more effectively, and by allowing you to set the humidity levels to suit your tastes, they provide a significant amount of convenience and comfort.
More importantly, they help you reduce the strain on your air conditioner, and lower your monthly bills in the process. The house will stay more comfortable, the lowered humidity will cut down on mold and other nuisances, and the air conditioner will run for longer periods of time without costing you as much.
If you’d like a dehumidifier installed in your Boston, MA home, call the friendly professionals at Cooling Unlimited, Inc. today!