If you need a whole-house dehumidifier, leave it up to a local HVAC professional
Too much humidity can leave your home feeling muggy. Not to mention it provides the ideal environment for mold and mildew. Don’t let that dampen your spirits, though: A local HVAC technician can install a whole-house dehumidifier to maintain the proper relative humidity. Here’s everything you need to know about the job.
Benefits of Hiring an HVAC Technician to Install a Whole House Dehumidifier
Aside from the stuffiness, humidity provides the perfect conditions for mold and mildew growth. Fruits, bread, and any perishable foods left outside the fridge might develop fuzz before you know it (as if you needed another thing limiting your window for eating an avocado). Plus, these spores can disperse in the air, aggravating allergies and causing other health problems for your family. Too-high humidity levels can also ruin your book collection and even cause your hardwood floors to warp or buckle.
Benefits to hiring an HVAC technician to install a whole-house dehumidifier include:
Ensuring proper functionality of your dehumidifier
Finding the best unit and installation method for your home’s unique needs
Maintaining compliance with local code regulations
Saving you time
Preventing potential damage to your home or the unit
Can I DIY Install a Whole-House Dehumidifier?
Installing a whole-house dehumidifier requires professional expertise—not just to guarantee that it functions properly but also to ensure compliance with local codes. However, there are plenty of ways to get more proactive about your home’s humidity. Here’s what you can do to monitor and control its humidity levels.
Checking Your Home’s Humidity
Ideally, the relative humidity in your home should be at 45% to 50%. To check this, you can buy an indoor monitor online or at your local home improvement store. With many models costing less than $20, this is an accurate and affordable way to determine humidity levels throughout the house. Should you find the numbers landing higher than 50%, it’s time to consider a whole-house dehumidifier.
Controlling the Moisture in the Air
Controlling the humidity in your home is all about proper ventilation—and limiting common moisture-causing culprits. Along with getting a whole-home dehumidifier, here are some of the best ways to control your home’s relative humidity:
Use exhaust fans while cooking
Limit indoor plants, especially during the winter months when there is less ventilation
Vent your dryer directly outside
Ensure your home’s HVAC system is running properly
How Do HVAC Technicians Install a Whole-House Dehumidifier?
Whole-house dehumidifiers come in various sizes based on how much water they can remove from the air in a day. An HVAC technician near you will factor in the normal humidity where you live, how much humidity your home’s AC system already dissipates, and whether you have a basement or crawl space that holds moisture. Plan to get multiple estimates from contractors who are appropriately licensed, insured, and bonded. As always, it’s wise to look for pros with specific experience installing whole-house dehumidifiers, as well as positive consumer reviews.
During a whole-house dehumidifier install, an HVAC technician will take the following steps:
Install a humidistat to measure humidity levels.
Hook the humidistat up to your home’s furnace.
Connect the humidistat to your whole-house dehumidifier.
Install a saddle valve to run water lines to the humidifier if local codes allow.
If saddle valves aren’t an option, the technician will install a T-fitting to connect to the water supply.
Install a bypass vent, if needed.
How Much Does a Whole-House Dehumidifier Cost?
The average cost to install a whole-house dehumidifier is about $1,300 to $2,800. Although this can seem like a steep upfront cost, it’s an investment that will improve your indoor air quality.
In some cases, you may also be able to choose a basement dehumidifier that can hook up to ductwork and control humidity levels throughout your home. Prices will vary based on factors such as the size of your home, your existing HVAC system, and the climate where you live.