A Quick Guide to Dehumidifiers

If you want a comfortable and healthy home, you’ve probably already given considerable thought to your home’s heating and cooling needs. But there’s another factor, besides the temperature, that has a lot to do with how your home feels: humidity. The amount of moisture in your indoor air can be influenced by many different things, some of which will be beyond your control. Lakeview Heating and Cooling explores the reasons to buy a dehumidifier and how to choose the right dehumidifier for your home.

When Do I Need a Dehumidifier?

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, the recommended indoor humidity ranges between 40 and 60%. When humidity is too low, you’ll notice dry and itchy skin. If humidity is too high, you’ll see condensation on your windows, rotting wood, mold and mildew growth, and higher rates of allergies. Your drywall, your furniture, molding, and many other parts of your home are susceptible to damage from excess humidity.

Something else to consider is that if you’re a collector, keeping your collectibles in the right humidity range can ensure that they stay in better condition longer. Musical instruments like guitars, photography equipment (especially lenses, or older bellows-type film cameras), books, baseball cards, and many other types of memorabilia and collectibles can benefit from a dehumidifier just like you do.

In any event, your best course of action is to have your home’s indoor humidity measured by a professional. If it’s too dry, a humidifier may be called for; if, on the other hand, there’s too much moisture, it’s time for a dehumidifier.

Choosing the Right Dehumidifier

First, a word of caution: if you start by researching brands and reviews, you’re doing this backwards. Like your home’s heating and cooling systems, start by sizing your system. If there’s only one room or space that needs its humidity adjusted, the brand matters less than the volume of the space. If the only room with a problem is your bathroom or laundry room, your needs will be much different than if you need to dehumidify your entire home.

Choosing the Right HVAC Professional

Just as important as choosing the right dehumidifier is choosing the right Chicago HVAC professional. That’s because the dehumidifier may not be the right solution. Remember, your goal should be to identify the source of your indoor air quality problems and to address that if at all possible.

Once we’ve identified the problem, we can help you to figure out the best way to solve it. As mentioned above, sometimes it’s enough to dehumidify a single room. At other times, you may need a whole-home system. Conversely, it may also mean taking other steps — like installing better ventilation, or the judicious use of some plastic sheeting — that address the issue by other means.

If it turns out that installing a new dehumidifier is your best course of action, we’ll help you size the system properly and suggest brands that we know to be effective and reliable. To take your first steps toward better indoor air quality, contact Lakeview Heating and Cooling at 773-698-6569 for a free consultation today.