Humidifiers Vs Dehumidifiers (What Are The Differences?)

In this guide we are going to do a comparison between humidifiers vs dehumidifiers and find out their major differences and in which situation you should pick one over the other. Many people go through their lives not knowing as much as they should about certain things. This is because asking questions is sometimes discouraged, especially if the question appears to be not very well thought out. However, asking questions is one of the only ways that you will be able to find out the information you need to know.

When you are able to properly understand something, you will be able to continue living your life much more easily. For example, if you do not know the difference between humidifiers and dehumidifiers, you could end up purchasing the wrong one, making your house significantly more uncomfortable to live in. Thankfully, the differences between humidifiers and dehumidifiers are relatively straightforward.

As the names might suggest, humidifiers and dehumidifiers serve similar, but separate, purposes in your house. One device will increase the humidity in the air whereas the other will decrease the humidity. Both of these devices will affect the humidity in a specific area, although they perform opposite tasks. Because of this, if you end up purchasing the wrong one, you could worsen any situation you are already in. If the air is far too dry around you and you purchase a dehumidifier, then you might end up making the air painfully dry. The same goes for purchasing a humidifier for an already humid area: it will only worsen the situation. This is just one of the many reasons why it is important to understand what each device does and how they differ.

Humidifiers Vs Dehumidifiers – What Are the Main Differences?

When it comes to telling the difference between humidifiers and dehumidifiers, there is one key difference: one takes away the moisture and one brings it back in. Humidifiers make the air around you more humid by releasing a mist. Dehumidifiers take the moisture away from the air, making everyone more comfortable. Humidifiers have a container of water that you will have to periodically refill when it gets empty. Dehumidifiers have a reservoir that you have to empty when it has collected enough water. Humidifiers come in two different variations whereas there are multiple different types of dehumidifiers. From dehumidifiers that are refrigerative to dehumidifiers that are electronic dehumidifiers, there are so many choices to choose from. Humidifiers don’t have this type of freedom and diversity. Humidifiers are often used in colder, drier seasons but dehumidifiers are often used during the summer seasons. Despite the fact that both humidifiers and dehumidifiers work to alter the level of humidity in a certain area, they function completely differently. If you end up mixing them up and purchase the wrong one, you’re going to regret it as it will only worsen the situation. By putting careful thought into which type of humidifier or dehumidifier you need, you can not only make your living situation more comfortable for you and your family but you will also be able to ensure that you and your family’s health will improve.

Why Should You Bother Changing the Humidity?

When you can just about smell the moisture in the air, there’s a good chance that you are in a humid area. Humid areas have their benefits and disadvantages over dry areas. Of course, in a more humid area, you aren’t going to have to deal with dry skin and chapped lips. On the other hand, areas that are more humid tend to be the perfect place for bacteria, mold, and dust to thrive, increasing the number of allergens and pollutants in the air. Humid areas are often perceived as being hotter as well. This is because the moisture in the air doesn’t allow your body to sweat, which is one of its primary ways of cooling itself down. Being unable to sweat, you will feel much hotter than you normally would feel on a day with average humidity levels. Nobody really enjoys having this happen. With that being said, low humidity is just as bad as high humidity. When there is less moisture in the air, your skin will become dry and itchy and your lips will become chapped. Typically, areas that are less humid will feel colder than they otherwise would feel. This is thought to be caused by the dryness of the air.

No matter how humid or not it is in your area, both of the extremes can be uncomfortable in your house. If it is too humid in your house, the air might feel muggy and warm. Depending on just how humid your house is, there is also an increased chance of mold and mildew forming, which can be dangerous for your health. When it comes to particularly young children, air that is too humid can cause the child’s lungs to become congested. This can be extremely troublesome for a young child. Similarly, when the air in your house is too dry, it will likely feel just as uncomfortable. The air will be dry and cold. In some cases, it might even be dry enough to affect your skin and your lips. Many viruses and bacteria end up thriving in less humid environments, making it unsuitable for a young child. This is where both humidifiers and dehumidifiers can come in handy.

What Does a Humidifier Do?

As the name might suggest, a humidifier is designed to increase the amount of moisture in the air. Getting a humidifier is the perfect counterpart to handling dry, less humid air. Typically, humidifiers are best used during the winter when the air is at its coldest and its driest. In some cases, dry air can even bring down the temperature of the entire house. Before you consider getting a humidifier for your house, you will first want to consider the humidity levels. People usually decide to get a humidifier when the humidity levels begin to drop below 35%. Once you have obtained a humidifier, there are a few specific applications of it that you should be aware of. Humidifiers are usually used during the winter to moisten dry skin to prevent cracking as well as moistening the nasal passages to reduce the chance that you develop a cold.

What Does a Dehumidifier Do?

Similar to the humidifier, a dehumidifier will affect the humidity levels of your house. Only this time, it will be working to reduce the humidity of a room or house. Usually a dehumidifier will be in warmer, more humid climates during the warmer months of the year. If the humidity levels in your house are beginning to pass 50%, it might be time to consider getting a dehumidifier to return those humidity levels back to normal. There are quite a number of benefits that a dehumidifier can provide that a regular humidifier won’t. For instance, dehumidifiers will reduce the number of allergens in the air, such as molds, dust mites, and mildew. Especially for the young, old, and people who have sensitive respiratory systems, reducing the number of allergens in your home is one of the best things that you can do to improve the quality of your life.

Which Should You Use?

While both of these appliances deal with the humidity of a room or your entire house, they both perform wildly different purposes. Humidifiers are designed to bring humidity, or moisture, into dry air. This is usually done through either a cold or a warm mist. Through the mist, your humidifier will gradually raise the humidity of your house until it is at a comfortable level. On the other hand, dehumidifiers are designed to take the moisture out of the air. If you are in an area that is far too humid, there will be far more moisture in the air than anyone needs. By taking the moisture out of the air, dehumidifiers will slowly drop the temperature of the room as the moisture in the air disappears. Simply put, if you need moisture taken out of the air, you should begin your search for a dehumidifier. If you need more moisture in the air, then you should start searching for a proper humidifier. Before you know it, the rooms in your house will be far more comfortable than ever before.

How Do You Take Care of Them?

As with any other appliance in your house, the time will come where you will have to perform maintenance on your humidifier or dehumidifier. Of course, both of these devices will be different in their maintenance needs. With humidifiers, you will first have to make sure that you are using distilled water. This will ensure that mold and bacteria won’t build up inside the tank, thus causing you to spray contaminated water everywhere. You will also want to clean the tank and the filter regularly to further reduce the chances that you end up misting contaminated water all over your house, potentially harming everyone in the process. Essentially, humidifier maintenance involves making sure that the tank and filter are as clean as possible and as dry as possible when you put them back in your humidifier.

Dehumidifier maintenance is quite a bit different. Because dehumidifiers do not have a tank of water to mist the entire room with, you will instead focus on cleaning separate parts. For instance, instead of a full tank of water that you would find in a typical humidifier, you will find a reservoir of water collected by the dehumidifier. This needs to be emptied on a daily basis as doing it less often can result in mold and bacteria growing inside. Depending on the temperature outside, you will also need to make sure that there is no frost on the coil. If there is frost, you should get rid of the frost as soon as possible since it will reduce the overall efficiency of your dehumidifier.

Can They Improve Your Health?

Both humidifiers and dehumidifiers can improve your health in their own respective ways. After all, humans are rather fickle creatures and too much or too little humidity can cause problems one way or another. Some people will even invest in both humidifiers and dehumidifiers to ensure that the humidity levels stay where they need to be. Many professionals recommend that humidity levels should stay between 35% and 50%. With that being said, if you want to stay safe from certain illnesses such as the flu, you might need to turn your humidity up. For instance, the flu typically thrives in humidity levels well over 98% and in areas where humidity goes from 0% to 50%. This means that if you want to stay safe from the flu, you will want to keep the humidity levels around 50% to ensure that the flu has the least chance of surviving in your house.

Humidifiers can do quite a bit, especially for younger children and people who have sensitive immune systems. While nobody really enjoys having dry skin or chapped lips, that isn’t nearly as much of a health problem as viruses and diseases. Some studies have shown that viruses and other illnesses tend to thrive in lower temperatures and humidity. This means that if your house has a low humidity, you are putting yourself and everyone in your family at risk for catching illnesses. This is where a humidifier can help you out. By keeping the air in your house humid, you can create an environment that is unsuitable for many illnesses, meaning that you and your family will be more comfortable and healthier than ever before.

Dehumidifiers, on the other hand, do more for the environment than for illnesses and viruses. In areas that are hot and humid, there’s a far more likely chance that mold or mildew is growing in some corner hidden from sight. Mold and mildew, when left unchecked, can have horrible effects on your health. If you or someone in your family has a weakened immune system or an allergy to mold or mildew, this can end up being a disastrous situation. Several more allergens and pollutants thrive and travel more easily in humid air. When you choose to get a dehumidifier, you won’t have to worry about these things bothering you ever again. Before you know it, the air in your house will not only be less muggy but it will also carry fewer pollutants and allergens that could affect family members, making everyone more comfortable.

 

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