Too much humidity in the air can be hazardous to your health and lead to structural damage that is costly to repair. The most effective way to keep humidity levels down is to install a dehumidifier, which is a device that removes moisture from your indoor air. Whether you choose a whole-home dehumidifier that integrates with your existing HVAC system or a portable unit that you can place in the most humid areas of your home, you're likely to notice the following benefits:
Less Mildew in Your Window Frames
Do you feel like you're always wiping mold and mildew off of your window frames? This is one of the most obvious signs of a humid home. Moisture tends to condense on the windows when the outdoor temperature is lower than the temperature inside. This condensation makes your window frames the ideal breeding grounds for mildew.
Installing a dehumidifier will reduce this condensation so mold and mildew are kept to a minimum and your spring cleaning routine is made less demanding.
Warm, humid environments are a breeding grounds for bacteria, many of which can cause illnesses such as sinus infections and upset stomachs. By installing a dehumidifier and removing moisture from the air, you are making your home less appealing to these bacteria. You may find that you and your family members get sick less often as a result.
Decreased Allergy Symptoms
Moisture in the air contributes to mold growth. Even if you don't see mold anywhere in your home, it may be slowly growing on surfaces such as window frames and the corners of your bathroom. The spores release by this mold cause allergy symptoms in many individuals. Removing the moisture from the air reduces mold growth, so you're less likely to wake up with itchy eyes or a stuffy nose.
Lower Energy Bills in the Summer
When the air in your home is humid, you have to keep the thermostat set even lower to keep it comfortable. Once you install a dehumidifier and start drying out your air, you'll notice that you can set the thermostat a few degrees higher and not worry about sweating so much. Your air conditioning bills will be lower as a result.
If you have a large, multi-level home, your best bet is probably to have a whole-home dehumidifier added to your existing heating and cooling system. For smaller homes with only mild humidity issues, portable dehumidifiers do an acceptable job. Surely, a portable dehumidifier is better than nothing if you're on a tight budget. Talk to several HVAC companies such as John Legg's Heating & Air Conditioning to get estimates, and use these figures to decide which option is right for you.