Does HVAC Remove Humidity?

Whether you have a new HVAC system installed or you’ve had one for a while, you may be wondering  About some of the main benefits.

However, most people don’t consider how an HVAC system can affect the humidity in their home. 

An HVAC system helps remove moisture and lower humidity in your home, primarily if you run it with your air conditioner. In order to optimize your dehumidifying with an HVAC system keep the air conditioner and air filter clean, replace old air filters, and inspect the ductwork for damage.

Just because an HVAC system can remove humidity in your home doesn’t mean that your system is doing an excellent job.

This article will detail how an HVAC system removes humidity in your home and how you can make sure that you’re optimizing the humidity removal.

Ideal Conditions for Humidity Removal 

Hot sticky weather and a build-up of moisture in your home can cause uncomfortable humid conditions.

You can invest in large appliances called dehumidifiers that suck the humidity and moisture out of the air in your home and greatly enhance the air quality inside. 

There are other ways to optimize removing humidity from your home.

An AC unit with an HVAC system allows air from the home to be sucked up and passed by the coil to condense moisture away from the air, which will work as long as you keep the air conditioner and air filter clean, replace old air filters, and inspect the ductwork for damage.

However, if you already have an HVAC system, you can remove humidity more easily than buying a new appliance.

An HVAC system works at removing humidity from your home’s air by circulating airflow through the ductwork and moving moisture out of stagnant areas.

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An HVAC system in your home works best at removing humidity when:

  •  It is used with your air conditioner
  •  Your furnace air filter is clean
  •  Your furnace air of filter these replaced occasionally 
  •  The ductwork is not damaged. 

These factors all affect your HVAC system’s efficiency and how well it can remove humidity from your home’s air.

(Source: Polygon Group)

How HVAC Removes Humidity from your Home?

When you have a humid air quality in your home, you may want to turn to expensive dehumidifiers and other machines.

However, HVAC systems can work with your air conditioner to remove the humidity in your home. 

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HVAC works as an airflow system that, among other functions, circulates air throughout your home.

As the air circulates through the ducts, it is brought through a filter in your furnace (past heat strips or evaporator coils).

Finally, the air is pushed back clean and conditioned (heated or cooled) out to the home through the ducts.

Air conditioners elevate the HVAC system’s dehumidification because, through their operation, air conditioners remove moisture from the air.

The air conditioner removes moisture so that the air is more receptive to a cooling temperature, in order to reach a set temperature.

In other words, humid air is not easy to cool, so the air conditioner has a built-in dehumidifying process.

The part of the air conditioning that removes humidity is the evaporator coil, which is located in the furnace.

When the HVAC system intakes air from inside the home, it rushes past this coil, cooling the air’s temperature.

The evaporated moisture condenses and is extracted from the air due to the coldness of the coil. HVAC ducts then return the cold, dry air through the ducts to the home.

Reasons your HVAC may not be Efficient at Removing Humidity

Suppose your AC unit and HVAC system are not doing a great job removing humidity from your home.

In that case, it is probably because of one of these common problems. You must identify this list of problems before you can fix them.

You need to know where to look first. Use this list as a checklist:

The AC Unit is Too Large 

It may seem strange to say that an AC unit can be too large to dehumidify and cool your home correctly.

However, a large AC unit and HVAC system will have a compressor that is continually turning off and on.

An AC unit that is continually turning off and on is not running long enough to dehumidify the air.

The system will not run long enough for the coil to remove humidity from the air.

The AC Unit has Limited Speed

If your air conditioner can only run at one speed, it may be fluctuating between on and off too quickly.

This causes the same problem as having an Air conditioner that is too large.

The air that is sucked up from the HVAC intake from home does not have enough time to stay in contact with the AC coil to cool down.

If possible, upgrade your air conditioning unit for multiple speeds and temperatures.

If you can only turn on and off, you risk having a  humid home even with the air being conditioned. 

The Home has Negative Air Pressure 

Suppose you have a ventilation system that is sucking too much air out of your home.

In that case, the ventilation is causing negative air pressure in your home.

Some places to consider checking when you home is at negative air pressure: 

  • Gaps in the door jambs
  • Window perimeters
  • Ventilation for the dryer
  • Attic spaces

In a negative air pressure situation for a home, the ventilation is too powerful.

Since the ventilation is poorly designed, air from outside the home is being sucked in from every little space in the doors and windows. 

When air from outside is continuously being sucked in, the air inside the home loses its air-conditioned fee very quickly.

A home with negative air pressure is not efficient at spreading air-conditioned air around the home and tends to get muggy quickly.

The AC Unit is Outdated

An old air conditioning unit may need updating or replacement if the air being sucked into it with the HVAC is not cool.

The ac unit may not be up to the challenge of cooling the air and may even have a faulty coil.

Humidity that builds up while using an old ac unit could cause a new ac unit.

You will probably also notice that the ac unit does not stay on consistently or get the air very cool, along with lacking a dehumidifier.

The Thermostat Needs to be Changed

Most air conditioning units with an HVAC system have a thermostat to set the rooms’ temperature in your home.

The only way to know for sure if your thermostat is the cause of your home’s humid conditions is to try different settings.

Set the thermostat temperature to a lower setting and see if the conditions improve. The air may need more time against the coil to condense and remove the moisture from the air. 

(Source: Air Stair)

Dangers of Using an HVAC System for Dehumidification

There are certain times when you should probably not use your HVAC system to circulate air and dehumidify the inside air.

For example, if your home is under construction, it could be problematic to run the HVAC system.

If you run your HVAC system during your home’s renovation or construction, the HVAC system warranty may become void.

If any debris or chemicals get lodged in the duct or appliances associated with the HVAC, this could be hazardous to the system and very difficult to clean out.

The cleaning may be impossible to do 100% so that the HVAC warranty will be void.

(Source: Polygon Group)

Lowering the Humidity in an Air-Conditioned Room

Sometimes the HVAC system is not enough to indeed remove all of the annoying humidity from your air-conditioned room.

If you are uncomfortable, there are a few tips that you can follow alongside using your air conditioner and HVAC system to lower the humidity in your home.

  1. Keep the ventilation/exhaust fan going: If you have exhaust ventilation fans in your bathrooms or a fan as part of your HVAC that can be on all the time, keep them on. 
  2. Take cold showers: Hot showers will add quite a bit of humidity to your home, especially if your ventilation fans are not robust. By taking cold showers, you limit the humidity added to the home from the bathroom.
  3. Fix Leaks: Leaking pipes and appliances can add extra moisture to an already sticky situation. Make sure to check for leaking or evidence of leaking in all of the rooms of your home.
  4. Clean your gutters: Gutters that are overflowing with garbage or leaves can add to moisture seeping down the walls of your home. To limit this moisture exposure, try cleaning out your gutters regularly.
  5. Don’t use a dryer for your clothes: Your clothes dryer may vent exhaust through the ductwork in the back, but it still uses heat and evaporation to dry clothes. This evaporation escapes into the laundry room and adds to the humidity throughout the rest of your house. 
  6. Keep windows open: If it is less humid outside, keep the windows open to promote airflow throughout the house.
  7. Get fake house plants: Real house plants don’t require watering. When you water your plants inside your home, it can add to excess water that the plant doesn’t use and make your home more humid.

(Source: Husky Air)

In Conclusion 

HVAC removes humidity from your home efficiently if all parts of the system are working well. Make sure to have the inefficiencies listed in this article checked.

 Also, keep in mind that an HVAC system works best with an air conditioner to remove humidity.

Not only will the air in your home remain cool but the ac can dry it out too with the help of circulated air from the HVAC system. 

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