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Dehumidifcation Learning Center
Dehumidification Learning Center

Relative Humidity, Temperature & Dehumidification?

Learn how these factors relate to your home environment

SaniDry™ Dehumidifier

Digital control. A SaniDry® basement dehumidifier and air-cleaning system includes a built-in humidistat that allows you to set a target humidity level for the appliance to achieve.

Humidity refers to the amount of moisture that's contained in the air. Whenever we talk about "humidity," we usually mean "relative humidity" (RH) - the amount of moisture the air contains compared to the maximum amount the air can hold at a specific temperature.

Helpful humidity facts

  • People tend to feel most comfortable in the 45%-55% RH range.
  • Low RH (25% or less) increases static electricity in the home. It also has adverse health effects: sinus problems, dry eyes, dry skin, and bronchitis, among other things. Indoor air that's too "dry" is more likely to occur in wintertime when heating systems dry out the air.
  • High humidity (above 60%) encourages the growth of mold and bacteria and also attracts pests like dust mites. These organisms can cause serious health problems. Mold can ruin organic materials and lead to wood rot, which can in turn lead to structural issues. High humidity is more likely to be an issue in the summertime.
  • High humidity problems are more common in moist areas of the house, such as bathrooms, kitchens, basements, and crawl spaces.
  • Moisture condenses out of the air when the air temperature dew point is reached. When you take a hot shower, water droplets on the bathroom mirror or window indicate that moist, interior air has reached its dew point near these cool surfaces.

When you need humidification and dehumidification

In most homes, dehumidification is more important than humidification, because many of our daily indoor activities (showering, washing clothes, cooking, watering indoor plants, etc.) increase indoor humidity. These activities, as well as water from a plumbing leak or water seepage through foundation walls, can increase moisture in the home, basement, and crawl space.

Basements and crawl spaces are common target areas for dehumidification. Even when these spaces seem dry, soil moisture can continually permeate through the foundation and floor slab if the ground outside is wet. When moist air condenses on cooler surfaces in a basement or crawl space, wetness accumulates and creates ideal living conditions for mold, mildew, dust mites, and termites among other pests.

Two ways to combat excess humidity problems are to air-seal crawl spaces and basements, and to run a dehumidifier designed to work well in these areas. Learn about dehumidification and solutions that will keep your basement, crawl space, and other areas of your home dry and healthy.

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