For the longest time, humidifiers and dehumidifiers were seen as luxury items in homes. In recent years however, they have become increasingly common, as more people become aware of the benefits they can provide for both personal health and overall home comfort.
It helps to know that, according to the Mayo Clinic and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), an indoor humidity level of 30% to 50% is ideal. Unfortunately, even with their clearly contrasting roles, it can be difficult to decide if you need a humidifier or a dehumidifier. Many people assume they need one or the other, when in reality, they could need both.
What Is a Humidifier?
A humidifier is a device that adds moisture into the air by releasing water vapor. The purpose of a humidifier is to add moisture back into the air when the humidity levels drop below 30%. Humidifiers typically have two parts: an evaporator and a fan. The evaporator turns the water into vapor, which is then released into the air by the fan.
This has several benefits. Firstly, the device improves air quality by reducing the amount of dust, pollen and other allergens in the air. Notably, when the air is too dry, your mucous membranes become dry and irritated. This leaves you more vulnerable to the allergens in the air, as there is less of a protective barrier between you and them.
Secondly, having a humidifier can make it easier for people with asthma or other respiratory problems to breathe better. Again, this relates to how the device adds moisture back into the air, helping your lungs to filter out allergens and toxins there.
Thirdly, because humidifiers help control the level of humidity in your home, they can be beneficial for preventing wood furniture from drying out and cracking. When dryness occurs, it becomes easier for dust mites to move around and potentially worsen any respiratory issues you may have.
Additionally, a humidifier can help reduce the symptoms of dry skin. In winter months especially, humidity levels drop significantly, which can leave our skin feeling tight and itchy. Adding moisture back into the air with a humidifier helps to keep your skin hydrated and healthy.
Finally, having a humidifier in your home will make you feel more comfortable in cool weather, as it provides a warmer environment. This is due to the water vapor in the air, helping to trap heat and keep you feeling warmer for longer.
What Is a Dehumidifier?
A dehumidifier, on the other hand, reduces moisture levels in the air by extracting it from the environment and storing it in a container or tank. The primary purpose of a dehumidifier is to reduce the level of humidity in your home and keep it at a comfortable level.
The main benefit of a dehumidifier is that it can help prevent mold, mildew or other forms of fungus from developing in your home. This is because when humidity levels get too high, they create the perfect environment for fungi to grow. A dehumidifier can also help reduce dust and pollen in the air. When the humidity levels are too high, allergens, such as dust and pollen, become airborne more easily, making it much easier to inhale them and have an allergic reaction.
A dehumidifier can help reduce odors in your home, too. Excess moisture can cause unpleasant smells to linger, such as musty or damp odors that usually accompany mold and mildew growth. Finally, having a dehumidifier in your home will make you feel more comfortable in warm weather, as it provides a cooler environment. This is due to moisture being removed from the air, helping to keep you cooler for longer.
So, Which One Should You Choose?
Consider your climate. In an area like Wausau, WI, which experiences fairly high levels of humidity on a regular basis, a dehumidifier might be the better choice.
Also, consider what you want to achieve. Do you have allergies or asthma that need to be managed? Or are you trying to reduce the levels of dust and pollen in your home? If so, then a humidifier might be the best option since it can help reduce allergens in the air. On the other hand, if you’re looking to eliminate odors and prevent mold and mildew, then a dehumidifier would be your best bet.
Finally, consider the size of your home and how much moisture you need to add or remove. Different humidifiers and dehumidifiers are designed for different room sizes, so it’s important to pick one that is suitable for the size of your space.
Both humidifiers and dehumidifiers can help improve air quality in your home and make your lindoor space more enjoyable to live in. It’s important to do some research before investing in either device, so that you can ensure you get a product that fits both your budget and your needs. With the right device from Southport Home Services, you’ll be able to maintain ideal humidity levels in your home, while also improving overall air quality and reducing allergens.
Considerations When Selecting Your Device
When you go shopping for a humidifier or dehumidifier, you will likely find a large number of options. To be safe, consider the size of your room, and make sure you choose a device that is appropriate for it. Having a device that’s too small or too large for your space will be inefficient and likely won’t work as well.
Also, think about the features you need. Do you want a device that you can control remotely? Does it need to have adjustable settings? These are important questions to consider when making your purchase.
Additionally, check the warranty on your device. Sometimes dehumidifiers or humidifiers can malfunction, and it is important to make sure you purchase one that offers a good warranty in case of any issues. For instance, some dehumidifiers may require repairs or maintenance if the condensate tank needs to be emptied frequently.
It’s also important to find out how easy it is to use and maintain the device you choose. For instance, some humidifiers have filters that need to be changed regularly, while others don’t. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance option, then it’s important to find a device that doesn’t need a lot of effort to keep running smoothly.
Finally, check the energy efficiency rating of the device you choose. If you plan on using your humidifier or dehumidifier regularly, then it’s important to pick one that has a good energy efficiency rating to help keep your electricity bills down.
Making the decision between a humidifier and a dehumidifier can be daunting, but with the right knowledge, you can make an informed choice that best suits your climate, needs and budget. If you have any further questions or need help to improve your indoor air quality, our team at Southport Home Services in Wausau, WI can help. We also offer plumbing services, including water treatment, bathroom remodeling, fixture installation, and water heater services, as well as HVAC repair, maintenance and installation. Contact us today to learn more!