Why should you consider a dehumidifier? Especially if you live in a humid climate, you know that mildew and dust mites can trigger allergic reactions, and if you already suffer from seasonal allergies, these factors can make them even worse. If you’re suffering from significant allergies and increasingly strong reactions, a good dehumidifier may be an excellent help to you.
Another significant reason to consider a dehumidifier is mold. Even the most carefully cleaned and maintained homes can experience mold issues from time to time. Sometimes known as black mold, the fungus more commonly referred to simply as mold grows wherever moisture can be found – and often where it shouldn’t be. It grows slowly and actually digests wood, drywall or carpet, spreading its airborne spores, often without homeowners or tenants knowing until it has developed into even more serious problems.
If left unaddressed for long enough, mold can result in significant structural damage, various skin problems and even respiratory illnesses like asthma, which can be a terrible burden for young children.
If you live in an apartment, you might not know that mold and mildew spores can build up on walls that separate apartments and even travel through shared ventilation systems throughout buildings. It’s discouraging to know that even if you’re keeping your living spaces clean, you and your family could still be affected by allergens from other tenants.
Read on for more helpful information about why you might need a dehumidifier and what it could do for you.
Allergens and humidity
If you’re regularly experiencing skin irritations, sneezing, a stuffy nose, itchy and watery eyes, breathing problems or similar issues, you may be cultivating a growth environment for mold, mildew and dust mites in your home without even knowing it. These allergy triggers, especially if they’re experienced regularly, are reliable indicators that you may have a problem.
Whether you live in a humid climate or not, humidity inside the home is the culprit for a host of potential problems, not only with your health, but also with the very structure of your residence. Humidity problems in the home are made worse by smaller rooms that lack adequate ventilation, especially in areas where moisture is often present, like small bathrooms and kitchens, or underground – where moisture can accumulate in nooks and crannies, like in basements and crawl spaces.
Signs of needing a dehumidifier
If your home is showing evidence of high humidity in particular rooms, you may want to consider purchasing dehumidifiers. These signs of extra humidity, which create optimal breeding grounds for the uninvited guests we’ve been discussing, are usually fairly easy to notice and include musty or mildew smells, visible water stains or black spots (mold spores) on walls or ceilings or regular condensation on windows.
Any part of your home that experiences high humidity with little or no ventilation, like bathrooms, basements, closets or crawl spaces, could be a prime candidate for a dehumidifier.
Benefits of a dehumidifier
Along with the general benefit of banishing allergens like mold, mildew and dust mites from your family’s furniture, clothes and linens by eliminating their preferred environment, there are several related benefits to reducing humidity in your home by adding a dehumidifier to any room. Reducing these moisture indoors also means a reduction in any related odors, skin irritations, respiratory and breathing problems.
Modern dehumidifiers are quiet, efficient and barely noticed, even when running full blast. Plus, running a dehumidifier can reduce energy costs, as dry air helps HVAC systems run more efficiently without working as hard to remove moisture from the air. As a result, your HVAC system experiences less wear and tear, meaning it should require less service and last longer.
Keeps other household items from weathering quickly
Another significant benefit from using a dehumidifier is its ability to make items in your home last longer. Beginning with the drywall on your walls and ceiling and extending to the wood in your floors and even the sleeping bags in your closets, less moisture in the air means your keepsakes and essentials will be better preserved for a longer life.
Everyday items like clothes, drapes, blankets, pillows and linens dry faster, and rust and corrosion is less likely to grow on the old wrench collection hanging on that pegboard in your basement.
Choosing a dehumidifier
Depending on the level of humidity and the size of the space you intend to use it in, you have plenty of options when it comes to selecting the right dehumidifier for your needs. Dehumidifiers gradually fill with water as they extract moisture from the air, and their water collection capacity varies according to the size of the room they’re designed to dehumidify.
For unique needs in specific spaces, some models are sold with special features, like dehumidifiers with pumps. Dehumidifiers for basement spaces are very similar to dehumidifiers for crawl spaces and perform essentially the same functions as any other dehumidifier. The main difference is the size of the space the unit is designed to dehumidify. The best dehumidifiers for basements are rated for the size of the room, reviewed well by professional appliance reviewers and rated highly by customers who have used them in their homes.
If you live in a very humid climate, have a very large home, suffer from allergies on a regular basis or some combination of all three, you may want to consider a whole-house dehumidifier. A good dehumidifier can definitely increase your quality of life and keep you healthier, but instead of googling “dehumidifiers amazon,” it’s best to do your homework, spend some time on a little research, and familiarize yourself with what’s on the market today.
Does your home warranty cover mold? Once you discover the answer to this question and decide on a dehumidifier – or any significant home appliance purchase – a home warranty, like a home protection plan from Cinch Home Services, makes it easy to cover all your major appliances, all your home’s core systems, or both, with affordable, award-winning plans that deliver peace of mind and help keep your home running reliably and comfortably.
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The information in this article is intended to provide guidance on the proper maintenance and care of systems and appliances in the home. Not all of the topics mentioned are covered by our home warranty or maintenance plans. Please review your home warranty contract carefully to understand your coverage.