The Effects of Humidity on your HVAC System
Humidity levels can be a factor in home comfort and HVAC performance in both cold and warm weather. Being that one of the biggest functions of air conditioning systems is to remove the humidity from the air within your home, it only makes sense that this can take a major toll on the quality of your system and potentially affect your system for working efficiently when necessary.
Here are some issues that we have dealt with in relation to humidity, as well as a few solutions that should be considered to provide a desirable home environment throughout the entire year!
Humidity and Central Air Conditioning Systems
An efficiently working system will eliminate the proper amount of heat and moisture from the air. However, if it is not working efficiently, it may never achieve the level of comfort you want, regardless of what temperature or zone you have set. High humidity often leads to air conditioning systems working harder in order to eliminate the moisture. Your home may often feel warmer than it actually is due to the excessive moisture that is not properly being eliminated. This can eventually lead to a system working longer and harder, never achieving the temperature desired and also, increasing your utility bill month after month. Some signals that you may experience if this is the case are:
- The air in your home feels moist
- There is a damp or musty smell in some parts of your home
- Your windows are foggy
Bigger is not always better! Make sure the air conditioning system you are using is the proper size to operate within your household.
Strategies for Dehumidification
The most efficient and reliable way to control the level of moisture within your home is to have a professional install a dehumidifier directly on your HVAC system. This allows the dehumidifier to work with the HVAC system to pull excess water from the system before it enters your home. This will also allow you to control temperature and humidity at the same time in your household. When humidity levels are controlled during the hot summer months, it allows your AC system to perform more efficiently.
Humidity and Heating Systems
Contrary to the summer months, colder air is not able to hold moisture for as long compared to warmer air. A dramatic drop in moisture levels can sometimes make the air feel colder than it actually is. Problems that arise from this situation are dry skin, dry nasal passages, irritated eyes, aggravated sinuses, etc. Your furnace may be using an extremely high level of energy to run without ever providing the warmth that it is intended to provide. If your humidity level is within the recommended range of about 40-50%, most people set their thermostat between 71 and 77 degrees to stay comfortable.
Strategies for Humidification
In winter months, it is recommended that you take a different approach than you did in the summer months and add moisture to the air by using a humidifier. Installing this equipment directly onto your HVAC system can have to the same effect as a dehumidifier; however, this time, it will add moisture to the air before sending it through the ducts in your home. During the winter months, it is recommended that you keep the humidity level within your home between 30 and 40%; which can lead to a more comfortable home and a decrease in your utility bills.
To find out more about how to increase and decrease levels of humidity within your home year round, call Prime Comfort today at (704) 237-3417!