In the area where I live, the weather is hot and humid for the majority of the year.
- It’s necessary to start up the air conditioner in early March and we typically keep it running until sometime in October.
The excessive moisture in the air can cause a lot of problems. Difficulty sleeping, headaches, nausea, fatigue and flu-like systems are all consequences of high humidity levels. Warm, moist environments are perfect for dust mites, centipedes, bacteria, mold and mildew growth. High humidity aggravates symptoms of allergies, asthma and dust sensitivities. It can cause wood furnishings, such as antiques and hardwood floors, to swell and warp. Plus, when the air is moist, it feels warmer and sticky. This leads to lower thermostat settings and puts greater wear and tear on the air conditioner. With the air conditioner working harder, it uses more energy and increases utility bills. Air conditioners are designed to create a cooling effect and not to combat humidity levels. Adjusting the thermostat might make the house feel cooler but won’t actually get rid of the excess moisture. While some people try to make do with portable dehumidifiers, these sometimes do more harm than good. If standing water is neglected, it can provide a source for bacteria to grow. Whole-house dehumidifiers install right into the air conditioner and require only annual maintenance. The dehumidifiers run almost silently and be adjusted to preference. Regulating moisture levels improves the health and comfort of the home and typically conserves enough energy to recover the purchase price. Living down south, a whole-house dehumidifier is as necessary as a central cooling system.