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How Your Indoor Air Can Impact Your AC Performance

top-view-of-an-outdoor-air-conditioning-unitDid you know that the quality of your indoor air can actually be worse than the outdoor air? This is especially true for humidity. Humidity is something we’re all too familiar with here in the summertime. It’s when there is excessive moisture in the air that it’s harder for us to cool off, since we can’t sweat. High humidity can even cause health problems.

The relative humidity in your home can quickly climb above 50% at this time of year, when it actually should be between 30%–50%. We’re going to talk about this more below, in addition to what it means for you and your health, as well as the health of your air conditioner. Remember, your air conditioner does have some dehumidification properties, but it’s not designed to effectively reduce your relative humidity level to where it should be.

When Is Humidity “Too” High?

As we stated above, the relative humidity level in your home is too high when it’s above 50%. (It’s too low/too dry when it’s below 30%.) This high relative humidity level is when most homeowners notice discomfort. After all, we stay cool by sweating, and too much humidity prevents sweat from evaporating off of our skin.

When humidity is too high, it means there is too much ambient moisture in the air to allow our bodies to effectively cool off, so we stay heated and don’t feel all that great! Plus, high humidity encourages the growth of mold, mildew, and bacteria that can make you sick.

What Does This All Mean for Your AC System?

The best way to lower humidity is to lower the temperature (which is why many homeowners mistakenly believe that running their air conditioner is all they need to do). This process causes moisture to coalesce into droplets, much like you’ll notice outdoors on early mornings.

This means your AC system is serving as an dehumidifier by default. But there are problems with this. First, the fact that air conditioners are designed for this purpose. Sure, they remove some moisture in the air naturally, through normal operation. But it’s not a significant amount, and you really have no control over how much moisture is actually being removed.

Second, this excessive moisture causes the cooling system to work harder than it should have just to do its job of cooling your home.

“So, What Can I Do?”

Have a whole-house dehumidifier installed! Dehumidifiers are designed to remove excess moisture from your living space without affecting the air conditioner. In fact, they help air conditioners perform better because you won’t have to turn the temperature down as low as you normally would to dehumidify your home, therefore saving energy and slowing down the process of wear and tear on your cooling system.

There are a number of benefits to a dehumidifier installation. We encourage you to give our team a call to learn more!

DB Heating & Cooling, Inc serves the heating and cooling needs of customers throughout Rockland County, NY, as well as Bergen County, NJ and the surrounding communities. You can count on us for expert air conditioning services. Contact us today! 

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