Portable Dehumidifier Vs. Air Conditioner: Which Is Best?

man cooling herself with a fan

Are high humidity levels in your home causing you concern? Are you worried about the damages and health risks that might result from humidity? If you answered yes, then it may be time to look into potential solutions. By doing so, you can alleviate some of the problems that may be caused by excessive humidity in your house.

A dehumidifier should be one of the first things to consider. A dehumidifier can effectively decrease moisture in your home. The two main types of dehumidifiers are the portable dehumidifier and the air conditioning unit. An air conditioner uses a cooling process that also extracts humidity in a living space. But how to know what is best for your particular situation? You will need to assess how effective it is to use a portable dehumidifier vs air conditioner. Once you understand the effectiveness and benefits of each, you can determine the right solution for your space. After all, it is vital to find a solution. However, it is also important to find the right fix that will attend to humidity issues including your indoor air quality and overall comfort within your entire house.

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Should You Choose A Portable Dehumidifier Or An Air Conditioner?

This article will sum up the differences between an air conditioner and a portable dehumidifier. This way, you can decide which appliance will work best to decrease humidity in your home.

What Is Indoor Air Quality?

image depicting indoor air quality of a home

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has stated that humidity is one of the biggest contributors to poor indoor air quality. This is because humidity creates an ideal breeding ground for mildew, mold, bacteria, and viruses. In addition, high humidity in a home can result in health issues. Such issues include breathing problems and respiratory infections. People who suffer from asthma and other respiratory illnesses will usually find it easier to breathe in conditions that are less humid.

Common Signs Of High Humidity

mold growth on wall due to high humidity at home

Some common signs that there may be high humidity levels in your house include:

  • Mold that can be seen with the naked eye
  • Rotted wood
  • Windows that are foggy

You will also observe a musty smell from mildew and clammy air that feels moist. A few other symptoms that could go unnoticed include allergies that are exacerbated or increased respiratory problems including asthma.

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Comfort Levels & High Humidity

high level of humidity

It is essential to understand that excessive humidity affects the indoor air quality as it relates to your family’s health. However, it also affects your home. Humidity can definitely lend itself to an assortment of health conditions. It can also reduce your comfort levels because your home will feel much hotter than it really is. Moreover, high humidity levels in your house can cause the paint to peel. It leads to warped floors, offensive odors, and the discoloration on your ceilings and walls. These damages can result in costly repair fees.

What Do I Need to Know About Dehumidifiers?

A dehumidifier is a device that is engineered to extract the extra humidity from the air in your living space. Basically, the appliance will pull the humid air in and force it over coils that are cool so that the moisture is condensed out of the air. Afterward, the drier air passes over coils that are warm before releasing back into your space. The extra moisture collects in a drainage container that you will need to empty. If your home’s HVAC system uses a whole-house dehumidifier or you are using an air conditioner on its own, the moisture will drain outside automatically.

It is salient to understand that even if you don’t have a whole-house dehumidifier, your air conditioner performs a cooling process that reduces the humidity. In the summertime, the air can be humid and damp. This type of air tends to be hotter than drier air. While the cooling process is happening, the hot air inside your living space is passed over evaporator coils in your air conditioner. As this takes place, it reduces the moisture in the air as it condenses.

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What Are Portable & Whole-House Dehumidifiers?

image of a portable dehumidifier

An air conditioner is a dehumidifier. However, there are other dehumidifiers that reduce humidity. Dehumidifiers come in two primary varieties: whole-house and portable units. Both varieties remove excess humidity in a living space. However, there are some important differences.

Just like the name suggests, a portable dehumidifier is in fact portable. This means you can move it from one area of the house to another. However, it will only remove humidity in one room at a time. In contrast, whole-house dehumidifier functions along with the HVAC system in your home and will extract extra humidity across your home. This works to keep everyone in the house comfortable.

When considering the benefits of each type of dehumidifier, remember that an air conditioner has an easier time cooling dry air than air that is moist or humid. Therefore, a home with too much humidity can result in wear and tear and higher cooling bills. As a result, the air conditioner will have to work harder to maintain comfort levels in your home. Whole-house dehumidifier functions alongside your air conditioner to reduce humidity levels in your house. This helps to safeguard your HVAC system and your home. It is a win-win situation.

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Which Works Better: Portable Dehumidifier Vs. Air Conditioner?

family enjoying cool air at home during summer

There are advantages and disadvantages to using a portable dehumidifier vs. an air conditioner when it comes to eliminating excessive moisture in your house. When it comes down to it, you have to decide what is most important for you. If you buy a portable humidifier, it will be cheaper than installing a whole-house dehumidifier. Perhaps this is a better choice if you only want to eliminate the humidity in one area. Take for example a restroom without an exhaust fan or windows. In this case, a portable unit would be the best choice.

On the other hand, if you want to get rid of the humidity throughout your entire house, the better option might be a whole-house dehumidifier that can work with your HVAC system. A portable dehumidifier unit has its limits when it concerns the levels of humidity throughout your entire home. A whole-house dehumidifier can help improve the quality of the air and diminish damages.

Removing excessive humidity from just one room will certainly not give the same advantages that a whole-house unit can provide. You must take into consideration the price of increased cooling and stress on your AC. There are also potential home damages and health risks to consider.

A whole-house dehumidifier can certainly help when you are ready to improve the overall air quality in your living space. You can protect yourself and your loved ones against dangerous mold and mildew. In comparison to a portable dehumidifier, this option requires less maintenance and you won’t need to check the drip pan in the portable unit every day. A whole-house dehumidifier is an ideal option for anyone who wants to minimize humidity-related issues and combine the use of a dehumidifier with your AC unit.


Call Miller Oil Company to Find Out More About Indoor Air Quality Solutions

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Miller Oil Company offers premium professional cooling and heating services in Hartford County, Connecticut. We employ only exceptional NATE certified specialists who can provide you with excellent HVAC installations, repairs, tune-ups, and replacements. Every team member is knowledgeable and has the experience and skills to service your HVAC system expertly.

Miller Oil Company offers very competitive costs for heating and cooling in the area. Our maintenance services not only improve the comfort levels in your home and improve your indoor air quality, but they can also help decrease your cooling costs. For those interested in improving the quality of air in your home, you’ve come to the right place. Our pros can provide progressive solutions for every home comfort need you might have. We offer affordable services that are backed with a satisfaction guarantee. Call Miller Oil Company today to schedule an appointment or get a free in-house estimate.

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