How to Clean, Maintain & Troubleshoot Your Dehumidifier

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By drawing excess moisture from the air, a dehumidifier keeps the house mold and mildew free during humid months. This makes your house more comfortable in a number of ways, from eliminating musty smells to helping to control allergies, asthma symptoms, and other respiratory health problems.

Although dehumidifiers do not require much maintenance as a rule, they do require a certain amount of upkeep in order to continue functioning properly.

Here’s our tips to cleaning, maintaining and troubleshooting your dehumidifier. By following these guidelines, your dehumidifier will help control the humidity of your home for years, providing a healthy and comfortable environment for you and your family.

Cleaning Your Dehumidifier

A dehumidifier has many parts that can develop build-up. Regular cleaning of each of these parts can prevent problems that can lead to the death of your appliance.
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5 Things to Consider When Buying a Dehumidifier

A dehumidifier is a powerful tool that can make your living and working space much healthier. Whether you’re dealing with damp winter weather or sweltering summer humidity, dehumidifiers can keep you comfortable and protect your possessions from mold and mildew.

If you’re thinking about buying a dehumidifier, these five tips can help you choose the best unit for your needs and use it as efficiently as possible.
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The Adverse Effects of Excess Humidity

Controlling the quality of your indoor air, as well as the humidity levels, is a crucial and necessary step to living a healthy life. Unfortunately, the amount of humidity in the air may have an adverse affect on your health, and could even affect the structural integrity of your home and furnishings. While humidity fluctuates throughout the year and differs depending on the climate in which you live, the fact that controlling the level of humidity in your living space is important, remains the same.

Arid Versus Humid Climates

The climate where you live determines a large aspect of what kinds of plants you can grow in your yard, how many sunny days you experience per year, and how dry your skin is. Every different climate has advantages and disadvantages, but too much moisture or too little can cause serious problems.

Most of the riskiest health problems arise from living in enclosed spaces in highly humid climates. While arid weather will cause skin to crack or become dry and flaky, humid environments are perfect for breeding mold, mildew, and fungus.
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How to Remove Water From Your Home After a Flood

Making a Flooded House into a Livable Home Again

House floods are terrible, catastrophic, and unfortunately, common in many parts of the world. The destructive power of water is amazing to behold from afar, but when it starts inching its way up to your doorstep or in though the basement, that same water becomes your nightmarish reality.

Flooded House

After the flood waters have receded, trying to pick up the pieces may seem daunting, but if you follow the right steps and put in some hard work, it’s not that hard to make your home liveable again. Here’s our guide to removing water from your home, and making it livable again.

Flood Water Contact Rules

Rule Number One: You should always assume that flood water is contaminated. This means that you need to wear appropriate gear when cleaning up your home and follow strict guidelines of how to deal with items that have come into contact with the water. Some of the most important rules to follow are:

  • Wear waterproof boots or waders and gloves.
  • Throw away any food (including canned goods) that have been in contact with flood water.
  • Disinfect after clearing away remaining water.
  • Clean and protect any bodily cuts.
  • Keep children and senior citizens away from flood water.
  • Bury any fecal matter you discover immediately.
  • Wash your hand thoroughly with soap before eating anything or touching your eyes and mouth.

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The 4 Big Benefits of Using a High Quality Dehumidifier

Edgestar DehumidifierA variety of common complaints about living areas, garages, basements, and even closets can be directly attributed to high humidity.  A dehumidifier may be the simple solution you are looking for.  Many people don’t realize humidity is their issue because the air “feels” dry.  Air with humidity levels as low as 50% or less can substantially reduce your comfort level and cause permanent damage to your home.  There are four big benefits of using a high quality dehumidifier in any enclosed spaces of all sizes.

Humid Air Causes a Proliferation of Mold Spores and Dust Mites

Mold and dust mites thrive in moist environments.  Most people associate mold with standing water or areas with that damp, musty smell.  The truth is the rate of mold growth skyrockets when the relative humidity reaches 50%.  Not only does this mean more mold but more mold spores contaminating the air you breathe.  Dust mites react to humidity in the same way mold does.

Air Quality Significantly Diminishes as Relative Humidity Rises

Humidity is nothing more than the amount of moisture in the air.  Unfortunately, moisture is the perfect container for dirt, dust, mold, spores, and other allergens.  The higher the relative humidity is, the more likely an allergic reaction will be triggered.  This is especially true for people with a very low tolerance to light-weight allergens like dander, mold, and dust.

Damp Air Destroys the Structural Integrity of Homes and Furnishings

Your home and furnishing are in a constant struggle battling against moisture.  Humid air acts a tipping point in the favor of mold, fungus, and rot.  While every home is less durable when it contains humid air over an extended period of time, wood is particularly vulnerable.  This includes flooring, cabinets, furnishing, and the wood supporting the weight of your home.

Humidity Makes Air Feel Hotter Than It Actually Is

One of the most popular reasons people add a dehumidifier to their home is comfort.  Air with a lot of moisture tends to feel much warmer than it actually is.  As a result, people force their air conditioners to work extra hard which shortens the unit’s lifespan and drive up utility bills.  A simple dehumidifier will go a long way in helping you save money and feel more comfortable.

How to Choose the Right Dehumidifier for Your Space?

There are a variety of different factors you should consider when choosing a high-quality dehumidifier.  The best place to start is the area you want to dehumidify.  The size of your dehumidifier should be based on two variables – the size (square footage) of the area in question and the average level of humidity (ranges from moderately damp to extremely wet).  It is important to remember that when comparing the “size” of a dehumidifier you aren’t actually comparing the physical size of the device.  You are comparing the amount of water it can remove per day.  This measurement is commonly stated in pints.  The more pints a dehumidifier can remove in a day, the dryer your air will be.

What is Relative Humidity?

Almost everyone knows what humidity is and what it feels like. We know it as a feeling of dampness that can be very uncomfortable. However, what most people do not know about is relative humidity. To the surprise of many, humidity and relative humidity are not synonymous. Additionally, most do not know why it is important to maintain certain humidity levels for a healthy and comfortable living environment.

For a detailed explanation of relative humidity and how it relates to air quality, visit the featured article in the Dehumidifiers Learning Center

Dehumidify for Allergy Relief

With the arrival of spring, many of us look forward to getting out of the house, spending time outdoors, and taking advantage of the warm weather. Unfortunately, along with more daylight hours and warmer temperatures comes one of the pesky draw backs of the season….spring allergies. Many are left suffering from stuffy noses, sore throats, and dry eyes.  Allergy sufferers try a number of different ways to combat these symptoms but one of the easiest is to focus on maintaining an ideal humidity level in your home.

EdgeStar 40 Pint Dehumidifier

EdgeStar 40 Pint Dehumidifier

Ideal humidity? What is that you might ask and what does that have to do with allergies? The humidity level of your home can greatly impact your allergy symptoms. A high level of water vapor in the air, or 50-60% humidity, causes mold spores, dust mites, and even pests to thrive. A dehumidifier pulls water out of the air which will in turn decreases the humidity level to prevent mold and mildew growth. You can use a digital hygrometer, like this P3 digital thermo-hygrometer, to allow you to monitor the humidity level. You should shoot for 40-50% humidity, an ideal level that will dramatically reduce air pollutants. 

Before purchasing your dehumidifier, think about the areas of you home that have the most moisture, many times this may be basements, crawl spaces, bathrooms, indoor pool areas. For those that live in exceptionally humid environments the best place to use a dehumidifier might be in your kitchen or bedroom. Once you have identified which area or room you want to use your dehumidifier you can select the best unit based on the size of the room. Use the chart below as a guide to help choose the right dehumidifier. Compare with your room size and moisture level.

dehumidifier comparison

Many dehumidifiers are portable and easy to move allowing you to easily test where you would like to use it. You can use the unit in multiple rooms to achieve the desired humidity level. Ridding your home environment of harmful allergy triggers like mold, mildew, and dust mites can help you dramatically improve your allergy symptoms this spring season. Happy spring!

Home Humidity Problems and How a Dehumidifier Can Help

Many people know when they have a humidity issue in their home, but may not be aware of all the different kinds of issues having a dehumidifier can help address. The following are problems excess humidity can cause, all of which having a dehumidifier in your home can help eliminate.

EdgeStar 70 pint dehumidifier DEP700EW

EdgeStar Dehumidifier

Poor performing air conditioning:

In order for the air in your home to feel cool, the air must be dry; otherwise there will be a hot sticky feeling. So when humidity levels are too high, AC units often run more than they need to, to compensate for the sticky feeling. With a dehumidifier, the excess moisture is removed from the air which keeps your AC from having to over work itself, ultimately saving you money on your electricity bill.

Indoor allergies:

Moisture in the air encourages the growth of dust mites, mold, and mildew. This can be detrimental for those who suffer from indoor allergies. Eliminating the excess moisture ensures that these harmful airborne allergies cannot thrive in your living space, giving you cleaner, safer air to breath.

Damp bathrooms or laundry rooms:

When the humidity in your home is high, an issue you may find is that your bathroom never fully dries after showers, especially if you have towels hanging to dry. Keeping a dehumidifier in the bathroom can help clear the air and ensure that towels can dry and moisture doesn’t settle on your mirrors and counter tops. It can also be helpful in laundry rooms to help clothes that may need to line dry, dry faster.

Musty odors:

When humidity is present in the air and settles on your furnishings it can cause an unpleasant musty odor from the allergens and bacteria, not to mention that gross damp feeling on your furniture and skin.

Structural integrity:

If moisture settles into the actual structure of your home it can cause floors to become creaky, paint to blister, wall paper to peel, and settling of walls that can leave cracks. If you have sliding doors, the metal frames can warp or rust which makes them hard to open and close. This is because these elements of your home are made of porous materials that absorb the excess moisture which then causes structural as well as visible damage. Keeping the humidity levels in check can prevent these issues.

Dehumidifiers come in a variety of sizes, from mini dehumidifiers (for closets, storage spaces, and bathrooms) to much larger commercial dehumidifier units (for restoration use), so whether you need to tend to only one room in your home, or the entire house, there is a unit that can get the job done.