Do you suffer from allergies or asthma? Is constant dampness making your home smell musty and gasp…moldy? If so, a dehumidifier is an appliance that may help make your life a little bit easier.
In this article, we look at the 8 advantages and health benefits of using a dehumidifier so you can decide if it’s an ideal investment to improve the overall air quality and comfort of your living space.
What Is an Air Dehumidifier?
A dehumidifier is an electrical machine that draws moisture from the air to reduce humidity.
Humidity is the concentration of water droplets in the air, taking the form of either a vapor or a liquid. The higher the humidity level, the damper the environment feels.
During hot months in tropical regions, it’s responsible for that “sticky” feeling. You can see it while cooking on the stovetop as water droplets run down the walls. Condensation on windows is also a sign of too much moisture in the air.
If humidity levels are too high inside a home, it can have a damaging impact on health, food, and certain materials.
Some people crank up the air conditioning to ease the discomfort, but even though the air may feel cooler, it actually doesn’t reduce humidity.
That’s where the dehumidifier comes in!
Is a Dehumidifier Good for Health?
Too much moisture inside a home can lead to health problems, especially those who suffer from asthma or allergies.
The constant dampness can trigger persistent symptoms and discomfort that never seems to improve.
And where there’s moisture, there’s mold. If dampness isn’t controlled, those unsightly spots can infest the walls of your home quickly- without you even knowing it’s there. Breathing in mold spores can also make people sick.
How Does a Dehumidifier Work?
A dehumidifier works like a vacuum cleaner, sucking in the air, collecting the water droplets, and blowing out dry air.
It uses a fan to draw in the warm air, then feeds it into a set of refrigerated coils that capture the water droplets. The droplets are contained in a tank that is attached to the dehumidifier for later disposal.
This helps reduce moisture in a room by 30-50%.
The benefits of using a dehumidifier in the bedroom are known, but it can be used virtually anywhere, including:
- Preserving collections
- Garage & Basement
- Greenhouse & Hydroponics
- Kegerator & Keezer
Advantages & Health Benefits of a Dehumidifier
Next, we’ll take a look at the 8 benefits of having a dehumidifier. No matter where you live, it can come in handy. You might be surprised at the difference it can make in your daily life!
1. Dehumidifiers Offer Relief From Allergies or Respiratory Illness
Probably the biggest dehumidifier health benefit is for people who suffer from allergies or respiratory illness.
Any environment with a humidity level above 50% is ideal for allergens (dust mites, mildew, and mold) to accumulate. Exposure to mold or dust mites can trigger respiratory problems, such as asthma.
Dehumidifiers are effective at balancing the humidity in the air between 45-50% to prevent allergens from getting out of control.
This is especially crucial for babies and young children, as it’s proven that exposure to mold in early childhood can lead to an increased risk for asthma in teens and adults.
2. You Won’t Have to Spend as Much Time Cleaning
Breaking out the feather duster is never fun, especially when you have to breathe in a bunch of dust or mold spores- yuck.
But you can actually cut down on regular maintenance by running a dehumidifier since it prevents dust mites and mold spores from flourishing.
3. Dehumidifiers Can Help Get Rid of Odors Caused by Mold & Mildew
A musty basement? A moldy spare room? Your home is starting to get stinky, and it may be due to mold or mildew.
Sure the smell is unpleasant, but it’s also a sign of something more toxic.
With dampness present, mold can grow on many surfaces, including wood, cloth, paper, walls, carpeting, and laundry hampers.
Sometimes homeowners may not even know they have mold until they tear down a wall and find the inside completely covered in black fuzz.
That smell can come from anywhere in your home, and it’s not healthy to breathe either. Some mold varieties, such as Black Mold spores, can infect the lungs and nasal passages.
The main point here is that mold and mildew are sneaky. If your house is beginning to smell, it can be difficult to pinpoint where it’s coming from.
A dehumidifier helps balance the moisture to prevent mold from growing, so the air stays fresh and odor-free.
4. Dehumidifiers Can Soothe Irritated Skin
There are several dehumidifier skin benefits, especially if you suffer from eczema or dry, red itchy skin.
While the cause of eczema is not proven, it is believed that dust mites, chemicals, fragrances, and stress are some of the main triggers.
Some people find that the air composition might affect their skin, especially when it’s too humid.
By keeping the humidity level between30-50%, the humidity is balanced enough so that your skin is soothed without drying out and cracking. It also cuts down on allergens, which can penetrate the skin and cause irritation.
5. Prevents Corrosion From Forming on Metals & Stops Wood From Warping
Imagine coming home to find your expensive electronics sporting a bit of orange rust on some of the metal parts. Is it poor manufacturing? Maybe not. It could be due to too much moisture in the air.
Humidity can cause rust to form on all sorts of home appliances and gadgets, including door hinges, guns, cars, and tools.
Too much rust can permanently damage metal objects or even cause wood structures to warp. A dehumidifier can help keep the moisture at bay, preventing corrosion from ruining your belongings.
6. Bread, Cereals, and Other Foods Stay Fresher Longer
Too much moisture also spoils foods such as bread, cereals, powders, and cake mixes. They’ll start to grow mold or become mottled and sticky.
Unfortunately, consuming these moldy foods by accident can make you sick. The only option is to toss them in the trash. What a waste of food and money!
A good way to regulate the moisture in your pantry or kitchen is by storing a compact dehumidifier where you notice a lot of condensation forming, or there isn’t enough ventilation.
It can help preserve these food items for longer periods and prevent mold growth.
7. Clothing and Other Damp Objects Dry Faster
Freshly washed clothes that are hung up to dry will take a while if there’s too much humidity. They’ll also start to smell musty, which means you need to wash them all over again.
Humidity keeps damp cloth from drying quickly, which can be frustrating to deal with when you need clean clothes pronto.
A dehumidifier can help balance out air levels, so your laundry cycle can continue moving smoothly.
Also, clothes and linens bunched together in a damp closet can lead to a mold invasion that affects not just one article of cloth, but also everything stashed away in the closet.
If this is a problem you’re dealing with, consider positioning a compact dehumidifier in the closet to help regulate the airflow.
8. Dehumidifiers Lower Energy Consumption
Air conditioners consume a lot of energy, and while dehumidifiers also use electricity, the energy consumption is less compared to AC units.
This happens because dehumidifiers pull the moisture from the air, which makes you feel naturally cooler.
With a dehumidifier on duty, you won’t need to rely on the air conditioner as much, leading to a lower energy bill.
9. It Keeps Pests Away
It can be difficult to get rid of spiders and cockroaches once you see one in your home, but lo and behold, these pests are attracted to moisture– and there might be too much of it in your living space.
The source of dampness is most commonly found in basements, bathrooms, laundry rooms, or crawl spaces where there are higher levels of humidity.
Setting up a miniature dehumidifier in one of these areas can help dry things out, making it inhospitable for insects.
Who Should Consider a Dehumidifier?
Are those enough reasons to convince you of how beneficial a dehumidifier can be? The cockroach one was enough for us!
If you’re still unsure about the advantages of a dehumidifier and whether it’s what you need, consider these possible scenarios.
You may need a dehumidifier…
- If you or any of your family members suffer from prolonged allergies in the home.
- If you moved to a new house/apartment and you’re allergies are acting up more than usual.
- You constantly notice condensation on the windows and walls.
- You notice unwanted guests scurrying around, such as cockroaches, silverfish, or spiders.
- There is some leaking waterafter it rains.
- The air in your home is muggyto the point that you can see the water vapor.
- You notice mold forming on your bread, clothes, ceilings, or walls.
- Your clothes and towels take a long time to dry and often smell musty.
- You develop a cough and runny nose that doesn’t seem to improve over time.
9 Advantages and Health Benefits of Using A Dehumidifier Conclusion
As you can see, there are several advantages and benefits of using a dehumidifier in your home. When there’s too much moisture in the air, it affects almost everything, from health to even your food.
A dehumidifier is a simple way to solve many of the issues due to dampness, and the results are immediate. By removing excess water vapor, you can enjoy pure air, less dust, and enhanced comfort.
References & Resources:
- Dehumidifier, Wikipedia.
- What is the Operating Principle of an Adsorption Dehumidifier?, KlimaTherm.
- Humidifiers: Ease Skin, Breathing Symptoms, Mayo Clinic.
- How Does a Dehumidifier Work?, Stack Exchange.
- Dehumidifier vs Air Conditioner: Which One I Need?, ATO.