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Can I Use a Fan and a Dehumidifier at the Same Time?

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Use an Lgr Dehumidifier and a Restoration Fan Properly

Water damage and excessive humidity can cause severe damage to the property, which includes mold, mildew, allergens, water stains, and a musky odor. It is therefore required to assess the water/humidity damage under the guidelines of IICRC to be able to cater to it accordingly. Today, we will be looking at how dehumidifiers and fans work together to eliminate moisture and treat water damage.


Function of Dehumidifiers


The primary function of dehumidifiers is to create a more comfortable and healthy indoor environment by controlling humidity levels. Here are the main functions and benefits of dehumidifiers:


Humidity Control: Dehumidifiers help control and reduce excess moisture in the air, which can lead to issues like mold growth, musty odors, and damage to furniture, electronics, and other belongings.

Prevention of Mold and Mildew: High humidity levels create an ideal environment for mold and mildew to thrive. Dehumidifiers help prevent the growth of these harmful fungi by keeping humidity within a safe range (usually between 30% to 50%).

Improved Air Quality: Excessive humidity can contribute to indoor air pollution by promoting the growth of allergens like dust mites and mold spores. By reducing humidity, dehumidifiers help improve indoor air quality, which is especially beneficial for people with allergies or respiratory issues.

Comfort: High humidity can make indoor spaces feel sticky, uncomfortable, and hot, especially during warm seasons. Dehumidifiers create a more comfortable environment by removing excess moisture from the air.

Protection of Building Materials: Excess humidity can damage building materials such as wood, drywall, and insulation, leading to structural issues and costly repairs. Dehumidifiers help protect these materials by maintaining optimal humidity levels.

Prevention of Condensation: Condensation can occur on windows, walls, and ceilings in humid environments, leading to water damage and mold growth. Dehumidifiers help reduce condensation by lowering humidity levels.


Function of Fans


Cooling: Fans are commonly used for cooling purposes. When air is circulated by a fan, it helps to evaporate sweat from the skin, which cools the body. In rooms or enclosed spaces, fans can create a breeze that makes the environment feel cooler, especially during hot weather.

Ventilation: Fans are essential for ventilation by moving air in and out of a space. Exhaust fans, for example, are used in bathrooms, kitchens, and industrial settings to remove stale air, odors, and humidity. Ventilation fans also help in maintaining indoor air quality by reducing pollutants and moisture buildup.

Air Circulation: Restoration fans help circulate air within a room or area, ensuring a more even distribution of temperature and humidity. This can be especially useful in large rooms or areas with stagnant air.

Drying: Fans are often used for drying purposes, such as drying wet floors, carpets, or freshly painted surfaces. By circulating air, fans promote evaporation, which speeds up the drying process.

Airing Out Spaces: Fans can be used to air out enclosed spaces that have been closed for a while, such as attics, basements, or storage rooms. By circulating fresh air, fans help reduce musty odors and prevent mold or mildew growth.

Improving Indoor Air Quality: Fans, particularly those equipped with air filters, can help improve indoor air quality by circulating and filtering out dust, allergens, and other airborne particles. This is especially beneficial for people with allergies or respiratory conditions.


How to Use Fans And Dehumidifiers Properly?


Each dehumidifier has a specific capacity to remove humidity; according to IICRC, you may need a dehumidifier depending upon the size of space it is to be used in:

For a space of 600-800 square foot –– 75-99 PPD AHAM.

A space of 800-1000 square foot –– 57-99 PPD AHAM.

A space of 1000-1200 square foot –– 100+ PPD AHAM.

And for spaces above 1200 square foot, more than one dehumidifier may be needed.

AHAM is a standardised testing scenario to determine the right dehumidifying equipment you need. According to AHAM, at a temperature of 80℉, the RH should be at 60%.

It is recommended to use LGR dehumidifiers which are more efficient than conventional dehumidifiers to restore the water-damaged buildings.


Dehumidifier Calculation Worksheet

Types of Dehumidifier

Class 1: clean water

Class 2: grey water

Class 3: black water

Conventional Refrigerant

100

40

30

Low Grain Refrigerant

100

50

40


1. Calculate the cubic footage of your drying environment. L*W*H = CF

2. Define the class of water loss.

3. Determine how many pints per day your dehumidifier removes from air based on the American Home Appliance Manufacturers test condition of 80℉ / 60% RH.

4. Using the chart above, calculate your total dehumidification needs. This can be calculated by dividing the factor into the total cubic footage of your drying area. This is based on the AHAM per 24 hours.


After determining the amount of moisture in the area, it is advised to use 3-4 air movers with each dehumidifier. Make sure that none of the equipment faces each other. Keep the air movers facing towards wet/moist surfaces and let them blow out the moisture from the area. The moisture distributed in the air will then be handled by the dehumidifier.

This is where a proper and careful assessment of your requirements plays its part. Choosing a humidifier that over-performs may not be such an issue in comparison to a dehumidifier that underperforms. That is why you must carefully determine the possible amount of moisture (PPD) and select a dehumidifier accordingly. You can use the formula sheet from above and choose the right humidifier based on its moisture-removing capability.


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