Sunday, 28 August 2016

What is a Dehumidifier and its Health Benefits Explained

A Dehumidifier is typically an electric appliance used in your home that removes excess moisture from the air, reducing the overall level of humidity in your home.

Ideally, indoor humidity should be kept between 40 to 60%.  High indoor humidity levels encourage the growth of bacteria, fungi, viruses, dust mites and more that can contribute to bad health particularly in allergy sufferers, such as respiratory conditions, skin allergies and more.

Functions / benefits of a Dehumidifier

·         Draws excess moisture from the air
·         Helps to reduce humidity levels
·         Helps to combat condensation
·         Helps to prevent mold growth
·         Helps to reduce damp on walls
·         Helps to eliminate musty odors
·         Helps to reduce allergens that thrive in humid environments

Health benefits of a Dehumidifier

Dehumidifiers can help improve your health, particularly bringing relief to allergy sufferers as many common allergens such as dust mites, mildew and mold spores thrive in humid environments.  Using a dehumidifier can therefore help with the following allergy related conditions:

·         Helps to reduce itchy/watery eyes
·         Helps to reduce sneezing or stuffy nose
·         Helps to improve breathing/respiratory problems
·         Helps to improve rashes/skin irritation

Useful tips:  To help reduce the risk of excess moisture in your home, use an extractor fan (or open a window) in your kitchen when cooking and in your bathroom when showering/bathing.  Try to hang washed clothes to dry outdoors rather than indoors.

Signs that you need a Dehumidifier in your home

Dehumidifiers aren’t just for people who live in a humid climate.  Moisture can typically build up in small living spaces especially if they have limited ventilation - basements, bathrooms and kitchens are typical rooms in your home where moisture can easily build up.  Typical signs of moisture build-up / high humidity in your home include:

·         Musty / stuffy odor
·         Wet stains or black spots on walls and/or ceilings
·         Black spots around the bath or shower
·         Condensation (bead of water/fog/vapour) on windows
·         Rotting wood

If in doubt, you can purchase a special thermometer called a hygrometer that measures the amount of moisture in the air.  Try placing a hygrometer in different rooms of your house (and at different times) and see if there's a difference between low and high humidity in different areas of your home. 

Types of Dehumidifiers

There are 2 main types of dehumidifiers which work in different ways:

Refrigerant (also known as compressor):

Refrigerant dehumidifiers draw air in through a filter over cold coils.  The water condenses on the coils, dripping into the water tank.

Refrigerant dehumidifiers typically work better at higher temperatures and higher humidities.

Ideal for most rooms in your home.


Desiccant dehumidifiers use absorbent material to extract water from the air.  This material is then heated, allowing for the water to drip into the water tank.

Because desiccant dehumidifiers use heat to warm the absorbent material, they use more energy, making them more expensive to operate.

Desiccant dehumidifiers typically work better at lower temperatures.

Ideal for garages or conservatories.

Frigidaire FFAD7033R1 Energy Star Dehumidifier, 70 pint, image, buy at low price

Frigidaire FFAD5033R1 Energy Star Dehumidifier, 50 pint, image, buy at low price

N.B.  It’s always advisable to consult your doctor or health care professional if you have any concerns regarding your health.

Prices/discounts indicated are correct at time of writing/publishing.  E&OE.

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