The air conditioning unit may be the best tool for regulating the temperature of a house. But air conditioners have another function: humidity control. With the correct air conditioning systems and a smart thermostat, humidity control in a house can be easily achieved, and moisture damage can be avoided. Moreover, regardless of the causes of humidity, with a planned HVAC humidity control you can obtain positive results.
Humidity plays an important role in maintaining a comfortable home climate, especially in summer. Optimum humidity levels for summer should be around 40-50%. However, high humidity levels can create an environment for the development of viruses, bacteria, and mold. This can have a significant impact on indoor air quality. Fortunately, temperature and humidity can be managed with smart air conditioning and smart thermostat systems. So how can the humidity control of a house be done?
Does Air Conditioning Prevent Moisture?
Yes! The general idea is that an HVAC unit can only cool or heat a room. Although the primary function of an air conditioner is to provide cold air, air conditioners also remove moisture.
It is not necessary to change any settings to remove moisture with air conditioning systems. The cooling process reduces the effect of indoor moisture on temperature. Condensation occurs thanks to evaporator coils and provides dehumidification in addition to the cooling process.
Water vapor is formed outside as a glass with a cold drink in it. Air conditioning systems work with a similar logic. Air conditioners have evaporator coils that intensify the humidity in the indoor air.
Hot and humid air in the room is assessed into cold evaporator coils. This air is intensified and removed from the system through condensation. Moisture is sent out of the house through a drainage pipe. This process is necessary for the elimination of moisture damage.
Reasons Why HVAC Humidity Control Is Not Working Properly
While an air conditioner can significantly lower humidity, problems may occur from time to time. Even if the air conditioner is running, there may be situations where the humidity remains high. There are many reasons why ambient humidity does not decrease when the air conditioner is on.
Due to the effect of humidity on temperature, air conditioners may have difficulty managing air temperature in high-humidity indoor environments. In indoor environments where humidity control is not provided, air conditioners expend more power both to reduce humidity and to cool the air. This may result in both a shortening in the life of the air conditioner and a significant increase in energy consumption.
Limited Speed Controls
An air conditioner that offers only a single-speed or on/off function, as an oversized unit, disrupts HVAC humidity control. Without a speed option, the unit turns on to reach the desired temperature, works in full power, and turns off as soon as it reaches the intended temperature. This cycle is then repeated. The air conditioner does not have enough time to remove moisture during this process. This causes problems, especially for those who live in high humidity areas.
A modulated air conditioner offers multiple speed controls. Therefore, when shopping for air conditioning, it is recommended to go with a modulated system.
Large HVAC Units
A large HVAC unit may be tempting to the residents of a large home. It is supposed that the larger the unit, the better the results. This situation is sometimes ignored, but it is difficult to regulate temperature and humidity with comprehensive air conditioning systems.
When talking about the size of an air conditioner, it is also necessary to consider the cooling capacity. An oversized HVAC system would have a powerful compressor and would often be turned on and off. As a result, the air conditioner would not work long enough to take the moisture of the room. Due to the effects of humidity on temperature, air conditioning systems may not provide adequate cooling, no matter how large they are. Therefore, an additional dehumidifier should be preferred to the air conditioner, especially in high humidity areas.
Negative Air Pressure
An improper ventilation system can cause negative pressure indoors. Negative air pressure occurs when there is a lot of ventilation in an area. Although inadequate ventilation is among the causes of humidity, excessive ventilation of the house may also cause problems.
When we open a door or window, we notice that air is flowing in. This is because the rising negative pressure in the room balances the ambient pressure by drawing air from the outside. When humidity levels reach an extreme level, the sultry air moves directly into the house, exceeding HVAC humidity control. The harms of excessive humidity in the indoor environment will affect your health and the life of your belongings.
Incorrect Thermostat Setting
When installing a thermostat, only what temperature is appropriate is considered. However, it is equally important to keep moisture in mind. For example, when you turn on the air conditioner in fan mode, the airflow inside the room is increased before the cold air enters. But this also leads to an increase in the level of humidity. Because the water vapor that has not yet come out inside the unit will return to the room.
It is critical for humidity control to first determine the level of humidity in the home and then choose the correct thermostat setting.
Dirty Evaporator Coils
The evaporator coils are the main component of the air conditioner responsible for the dehumidifying process, but they may become contaminated and lose their function over time.
Dirt particles act as an insulator, preventing water vapor from being drawn from the air. This not only reduces the air conditioner’s cooling capacity but also affects the dehumidification process. In fact, considering the effects of humidity on temperature, it is possible for the air conditioner to make an extra effort but hardly affect the ambient temperature. When there is a noticeable change in the operation of the air conditioner, the cleanliness of the evaporator coils should be checked.
Leaking Duct System
Any moist air source that leaks into the house would gradually raise the humidity level. Hot and humid air will be sucked into the duct system, especially if there is a leak on the turning side. In this case, the air conditioner would not be able to clean the ever-increasing humidity.
When problems with air conditioning humidity control arise, it is best to inspect the ducts and repair any leaks as soon as possible.
Old HVAC Unit
As HVAC units get older, their operating capacity gradually decreases. Old units may not cool like new ones. The efficiency of air conditioners may decrease and maintenance costs may increase over time. In addition, HVAC humidity control components may also be inadequate to maintain ideal levels.
This is due to the decrease in the cooling and dehumidification capacity of the unit over time. This may mean that it is necessary to replace the unit. The average lifespan of an air conditioner is around 10-15 years. Therefore, if this period has passed or is approaching, it is time to buy a new air conditioner.
Why Does The House Become Humid When Air Conditioning Is On?
In addition to air conditioning, a number of factors are effective when it comes to humidity control. Factors such as design, construction material, geographical location, airtightness of the house play a role in humidity control management as well.
For example, if you live in a scorching climate, your air conditioner works most of the time. Therefore, the air conditioner will have enough time to get the moisture of the indoor air. On the other hand, if it is necessary to operate the air conditioner for a limited time, the air conditioner may not be able to reduce the moisture.
Humidifiers, Dehumidifiers, and Air Conditioners
Air conditioners also remove the humidity of the air, but the main functions of air conditioners are to cool the ambient temperature. Humidification is more of an effect of the cooling process that takes place within the unit. That’s why those who engaged in HVAC humidity control should consider other options for managing the level of humidity in their homes.
Humidifiers and dehumidifiers are devices that help fight moisture problems. If a house is always moist, a dehumidifier is needed. On the contrary, if the air around the house is too dry and the humidity levels always remain low, a humidifier would be needed.
Humidifiers and dehumidifiers are separate devices. Although air conditioning systems can remove the moisture from the air, their dehumidifier capacity will not be equal to that of a humidifier.
These devices can be added to a central air conditioner as needed. These can be installed as part of the system to improve HVAC humidity control.
Smart thermostat systems have the capacity to do much more than managing a home’s heating and cooling system. Since it is a system controlled through the application, it can be controlled remotely as long as the phone is connected to the internet. This system allows users to adjust the temperature and humidity. Many models are also compatible with voice assistants such as Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri.
Smart HVAC Humidity Control
The causes of humidity are variable, but with planned humidity control, moisture can be easily prevented regardless of the cause. You can control the humidity in the house anytime, anywhere using a smartphone. When a humidity range is set using the ‘comfortable’ mode, the air conditioner works automatically to maintain it. There is no need to buy another device to measure the humidity in the house. These systems can always be controlled via mobile phone.
A smart solution should be selected for HVAC humidity control. It is possible to pair central air conditioners with smart thermostats, mini compartments, windows, and portable air conditioners via air conditioning controllers. These smart home appliances take the temperature and humidity control of rooms within the air conditioning system to a whole new level.