Will My Air Conditioning Work Better with Dehumidification?

Posted on: October 13, 2013

As the days grow longer and hotter this summer, prudent homeowners and business owners alike will want to make sure that their air conditioning system is working at optimal efficiency. Many people seeking relief from the heat are wondering if their air conditioning will work better with dehumidification.

Anyone who has been in a warm, muggy environment is going to be familiar with just how uncomfortable high humidity levels can be. Humidity makes us uncomfortable because the air has a higher percentage of water vapor. Our bodies naturally perspire when it is hot, to help carry away heat. However, when the air holds more moisture, less perspiration can evaporate from your skin. This is why you will feel more uncomfortable on a hot and humid day compared to a hot and dry day.

High humidity, with the air saturated with maximum water vapor, can make your home's rooms feel stuffier than usual, or even give off a musty aroma. Humidity can eventually attract pests such as centipedes and silverfish, as well as affect your home's structural integrity.

To protect you and your family from the unpleasant, sticky feeling of high humidity as well as to give your electronics and your home itself a fighting chance during inclement weather, you, like many people may decide to use dehumidification with your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system.

1. How a Standard Dehumidifier Works

A dehumidifier typically is comprised of four basic components: A fan decompressor, a reheater, compressor cooling coils and a reservoir.

The fan compressor pulls air from your workplace or home and then sends it into the dehumidifier. As this is happening, the compressor will compress and expand refrigerant gas to cool down the coils of the dehumidifier.

While the air passes through, it makes contact with the cooled coils. Just like water will condense on the outside of a cold can of soda on a hot day, moisture from the air will appear on the coils. This water will then drip from the coils into the reservoir of the dehumidifier.

A dehumidifier will typically have a plastic receptacle to serve as the reservoir, which can drain or be pumped out via a hose to the outside.

Because heat is given off during this process, the reheater will capture and collect the waste heat generated by the compressor. One possible drawback is that if your home or business is super insulated to keep heat from escaping during the winter, it may be harder for the accumulated heat from the dehumidifier to get outside.

However, given the choice between suffering from high humidity during hot weather or needing a bit more energy to get rid of the waste heat generated during the dehumidification process, many people will opt for comfort and use a dehumidifier.

Your AC won't have to work as hard if you use a dehumidifier, because you won't need to make the building colder to make everyone comfortable in the presence of high humidity.

2.  Variable Speed Air Handler with a Dehumidification Thermostat

The best option for most homes is to combine a variable speed air handler with a thermostat that has humidity control.  A variable speed air handler is able to precisely control the speed of heated and cooled air through your home.  The result is more efficient use of electricity, better ability to control zoning, and better air quality.  Combining this with a dehumidification thermostat will improve indoor air quality and allow for more efficient removal of humidity for the air in your home.

People working and residing in the greater Jacksonville area know that they can rely on the professionally trained experts at David Gray Heating & Air to handle all their HVAC installation, maintenance and repair needs. For more information about using dehumidification to cope with humidity and make your home or business more comfortable, please feel free to contact us today. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year. We're looking forward to hearing from you.

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