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A dehumidifier reduces the relative humidity of the surrounding air two ways. The removal of moisture from the air ( as described above ) reduces its humidity. The relative humidity of the air is further reduced by heating as the air is discharged over the condenser and out the front. The air is actually heated several degrees in this process. It is normal for the surrounding air to slightly increase in temperature as the dehumidifier operates. This heating effect further reduces the relative humidity of the surrounding air.
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Energy efficiency is important in dehumidifiers. Differences of only 85 watts may add 20 kWh daily to your summer electric bill. Some models let the fan run continuously to circulate air back to the humidistat. Since in most situations the moisture content will be the same throughout the enclosed area being treated, this may be an unnecessary energy expense.
Place the dehumidifier at least 6 inches from the nearest wall where air can flow freely to and from all sides. Avoid locating it in a room corner or near a large piece of furniture. Shut all doors and windows to the area to be dehumidified.
For the first few days of operation, turn the humidistat, if the model has one, to drier or "extra dry." This aids moisture removal from furnishings as well as room air. After the area has dried, adjust the humidistat to your particular comfort level.
Before you empty the water pan or bucket, turn the machine off and also disconnect the power cord. This eliminates any possibility of electric shock if you spill water and there is a fault in the grounding system of the unit or your home wiring. Be sure the area, the unit, and you are dry before you reconnect the cord.
Dehumidifiers operate most effectively at air temperatures about 70 F. At temperatures below 65 F frost may form on the coils (which are kept cold to condense as much moisture as possible). If this happens, shut it off, and wait for it to defrost before running again. Frost cuts down air circulation so the dehumidifying process does not work, and may damage the coils. This problem usually occurs in cool basements in spring or fall; check the appliance if temperature hovers near that point.
As water condenses out of the air, heat is given off, raising the temperature slightly in the area around the appliance. This warmer air results in a lower relative humidity.
Dehumidifiers need little upkeep or care. The following simple procedures are sufficient:
Always unplug the power cord before cleaning the unit. For regular cleaning, dust the grilles or louvers with a soft brush or the dusting attachment of a vacuum cleaner. Either dust the cabinet or wipe it with a damp cloth. Every few weeks, scrub the inside of the water container with a sponge or soft cloth and a mild detergent to discourage the growth of mold, mildew, or bacteria. At least once each season, remove all dust and lint from the cold coils with a soft brush.
Always plug a dehumidifier into a three hole grounded outlet. If there is none where you want to put the unit, make sure you install one properly. Using extension cords is not advised because if an extension rests on a damp floor or if water spills on it, is a shock hazard. If you must use an extension cord, be sure it has a three-hole receptacle and three-prong plug for grounding. If a three-hole, grounded outlet is not available, convert it following our instructions and grounding properly. This is particularly important for a dehumidifier because it may be operated on a damp floor that could conduct electricity and because it collects water, which could spill and cause an electrical accident. Never remove the third prong from a dehumidifier plug; to do so invites an electrical accident.
A dehumidifier makes use of the fact that water tends to be individual gas molecules in the air at higher temperatures but condensed liquid molecules on surfaces at lower temperatures. At its heart, a dehumidifier is basically a heat pump, one that transfers heat from one surface to another. Its components are almost identical to those in an air conditioner or refrigerator: a compressor, a condenser, and an evaporator. The evaporator acts as the cold surface, the source of heat, and the condenser acts as the hot surface, the destination for that heat.
When the unit is operating and pumping heat, the evaporator becomes cold and the condenser becomes hot. A fan blows warm, moist air from the room through the evaporator coils and that air's temperature drops. This temperature drop changes the behavior of water molecules in the air. When the air and its surroundings were warm, any water molecule that accidentally bumped into a surface could easy return to the air. Thus while water molecules were always landing on surfaces or taking off, the balance was in favor of being in the air. But once the air and its surroundings become cold, any water molecules that bump into a surface tend to stay there. Water molecules are still landing on surfaces and taking off, but the balance is in favor of staying on the surface as either liquid water or solid ice. That's why dew or frost form when warm moist air encounters cold ground. In the dehumidifier, much of the air's water ends up dripping down the coils of the evaporator into a collection basin.
All that remains is for the dehumidifier to rewarm the air. It does this by passing the air through the condenser coils. The thermal energy that was removed from the air by the evaporator is returned to it by the condenser. In fact, the air emerges slightly hotter than before, in part because it now contains all of the energy used to operate the dehumidifier and in part because condensing moisture into water releases energy. So the dehumidifier is using temperature changes to separate water and air.
Distilled water is created by boiling water, which releases steam. This steam is then condensed, forming liquid water that is collected in a clean container. This process not only produces pure water since any minerals or other substances in the water are left behind, but also the heat sterilizes the water so that live fungal and bacterial pathogens are not present in the distilled water.
A dehumidifier works by simply condensing water from the air (from the water vapor that is present in household air) and collecting it. Since this does not involve boiling the water, the water is not sterilized. In fact, older dehumidifiers, which may not have been cleaned out, can feature many fungal spores in the equipment and in the water that is collected (since fungal spores are naturally found in damp air anyway).
So, while the water collected in the dehumidifier may not contain problematic minerals and chemicals, such as sodium or chlorine, that might be in your town water supply, it can contain high levels of microbial contamination and it not suitable for drinking or for hydroponic systems--unless it is boiled first.
Humidifiers & Dehumidifiers Energy saving tips Purchase a low wattage unit. If youre comparing dehumidifiers with the same capacity, check the wattages on the nameplates. A lower wattage unit that does the same job is the better value. Humidity makes you feel warmer. Use a humidifier in the colder months. With the proper humidity level, youll be able to turn your thermostat down to a lower temperature, save energy and still feel comfortable. Dehumidifiers remove moisture. Use a dehumidifier in the warm, humid months to remove moisture from the air. A dehumidifier works best when air can circulate freely through it. Place it away from walls and bulky furniture. Reducing moisture and humidity in your home. Place dehumidifier in the area with the highest humidity. For safety reasons, dont place it directly in water or near your sump pump. Check for frost build-up. If your unit is running in temperatures less than 70º F, check it occasionally to see if frost is building up on the coils. If so, turn the unit off until the frost melts and the room is warmer. Clean the unit. Dust or vacuum the dehumidifier at least once a year before you plug it in. If your unit is difficult to clean, check the owners manual.
How do humidifiers work and what is the daily output of water? Are they silent? There are two basic types of humidifiers, passover and heated. IN the case of the passover models, air passes over the surface of the water in the humidifier and gains humidity. A passover humidifier is completely silent and actually decreases slightly the noise transmitted thru the hose.
The amount of water used per night is a function of the temperature and humidity of the air coming from the humidifer, the water temperature in the humidifier, the amount of air flow, and the amount of water surface area the humdifier provides. Most users will find they have used 1/4 to 1/2 cup during a night. This is usually enough to keep the airway moist and comfortable. A heated humidifier greatly improves the amount of water vapor being delivered to the user.
Air can only hold so much moisture for a given air temperature. This
measure is the relative humidity. If the air is saturated with moisture,
we say it is at 100% relative humidity. That is like when you are in a
steamy shower with clouds of moisture in the air. If the temperature in
the room is lower, it will steam up even more since the air can't hold as
much moisture before it condenses (changes from vapor to liquid) on a
surface. The air in a room will will lose moisture to a dehumidifier
because it is cooled below the existing temperature and cannot hold as
much moisture as it did at the warmer temperature. The cold surface will
cool the air, and the moisture in the air will condense from vapor to
liquid onto the cold surface. To condense a vapor to liquid, it must give
up a certain amount of energy. This is absorbed by the chilled plate in
the de-humidifier. (An example is the mirror in a steamy bathroom with the
Tabletop humidifier works off the principle of evaporation. More energy efficient
than warm-moisture humidifiers because there is no heating element.
Q - Will my desiccant dehumidifier work in a cold room ?
A - A desiccant dehumidifier will not operate satisfactory in a room that is below 65 degrees F. At this temperature it will become necessary to operate the dehumidifying coil below freezing temperatures in order to reduce the relative humidity to a reasonable valve. Frost on coils usually will appear.
Q - My unit will not operate at all, help.
A - Unit may be unplugged. House fuse blown or circuit breaker tripped. Check the bucket, it may be full, empty it. Float not inside the bucket properly, adjust the float so it hangs in the bucket properly.
Q - I have frost building up on my coils.
A - Is the air temperature to cold, below 65 degrees? Dirty coils can effect the air flow over the coils, unit may need to be steam washed. Poor air flow from a slow fan can also allow the coils to frost up.
Q - My unit does not seem to remove much moisture.
A - Poor air flow from a slow fan or the fan motor may have quit completely. Dirty coils, may need to be steam cleaned. Unit too close to the wall giving poor air flow. desiccant dehumidifier s have a compressor inside, it may not be running due to a bad start relay or a bad compressor or faulty float switch.
Q - My desiccant dehumidifier is making a squealing noise.
A - This often is a bad fan motor. It will need to be replaced.
Q - My desiccant dehumidifier will not collect water and seems to be making a clicking on and off noise.
A - Often a clicking on and off noise is the compressor trying to start but cannot. Often this can be as minor as a bad start relay or as major as a bad compressor itself.
Q - My desiccant dehumidifier will not collect water.
A - If the fan is operating ok, some desiccant dehumidifier s have a frost guard switch ( round device attached to the evaporator coils ). If this frost guard opens circuit it will stop the compressor from running at all. A ohm meter can be used to test the frost guard switch.
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